Thursday, 1 March 2012

Does anyone speak potato?

I consider myself a fairly good linguist, as I am a fairly fluent French speaker, but try as I might, I cannot speak potato.

In the interests of growing a few potatoes on the patio, I have been doing a little research.  Now, I'm not thinking  of self-sufficiency or anything like that, just a sack of home-grown charlotte potatoes would be great.

But I am bombarded with potato-language like 'earlies' and 'second earlies' and 'maincrop' and 'chitting'. Is there a translation manual I could buy?   Or could my lovely, knowledgeable readers help me out?  I don't know how early and maincrop relate to a normal non-gardening calendar.

I really don't intend for this blog to become a book blog.  I want it to reflect everything that interests me, books, knitting, christianity, home, garden, everything, I don't want to specialise.  However I have read a really good book this week...................

The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox

It's a story about the bad old days of psychiatric hospitals, Esme Lennox is incarcerated into an institution at the age of 16, basically for being a bit odd, for not wanting to get married, and for not wanting to cut her hair. She ends up staying there for 60 years.  The story starts with her release, and her first taste of freedom.

The ending was a bit predictable and disappointing all at the same time, but that didn't spoil the book.

I am now in the middle of a very intriguing book called The Roundabout Man by Clare Morrall....

Product Details

about a man who decides to break away from his past, in his sixties, and live in a caravan on a big traffic island.  I've got a feeling someone really did that once, and died a few years ago.  Maybe that was her inspiration.  So far it is really good.  And it is in English, not potato-ese!

9 comments:

Jane and Chris said...

Her in Canada we only have one crop as our growing season is so short....so we have it easy.
Jane x

♥ Tina said...

I'll get back to you...my hubby is a potato guru! xx

♥ Tina said...

Ok, got the info...

If you get your seed potatoes at somewhere like B&Q, the varieties will be categorised for you.

Earlies - plant in March

Second Earlies - end of March

Main crop - April

Main crop potatoes are the ones you can store well over winter.

Chitting is a way of helping the seed potatoes to start sprouting. Lay them on a seed tray and keep in a warm, light place but not in direct sun. It should take 2-3 weeks (half an inch to an inch long sprouts)

It's not really necessary to chit main crop potatoes.

Hope this info helps! Nothing like home grown spuds! xx

Pom Pom said...

Wow! Tina has all the potato tips!
I know nothing about growing them, only eating them.
Thank you for sharing your book reviews, Jayne!

Jayne said...

Wow, thank you so much Mr Quiet Home for imparting your wisdom, and to Tina for passing it all on! I'll go to B & Q as soon as I can and let you know how I get on, and thank you so much Pom Pom and Jane and Chris for your comments.

I am looking forward to tucking in to my home grown potatoes one day!

♥ Tina said...

Our pleasure! xx :)

magsmcc said...

Our book club read Esme a whie ago but it's still the universal favourite! I have been thinking about her recently- doesn't it say in there somewhere that they would put away women who just sat and brooded and did no housework....

Marie said...

Hi Jayne

I think the man lived in a tent on the traffic island and died quite tragically.
Marie

Meanqueen said...

I see you have the answers to your potato questions. My way is to plant them all at the same time. I always have a good crop. I have a big bag of potatoes my shed, I'm supposed to be eating them, but they are all sprouting (chitting) so I might end up planting some of them, ha ha.

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