Unwanted Volunteers

DSC_0047Bloomin’ heck, look at this. An invader among my lovely January King savoy cabbages.

To be absolutely honest, it’s the cabbages that are the invaders, this plant was here first, but it has to go.

Last season I grew International Kidney potatoes (grown as Jersey Royals in the Channel Islands) in this bed, and I must have missed a couple in the harvest. Self-seeded potatoes are known as ‘volunteers’.

DSC_0050

Fantastic! Free spuds!

Uh-uh. However tempting it is to let them be, or even gently lift them and move elsewhere, resist the urge. Potatoes left in the soil overwinter are terrible blight-harbourers – they must go. I haven’t even put the roots on the compost though the haulms (stems) are probably okay.

It’s worth remembering that blight overwinters in organic matter, not the soil itself. Remove that and you significantly reduce the risk of getting the disease next year. That’s why crop rotation is so important.

International Kidney potatoes are one of my core Event crops – they taste like no other spud. I am determined not to fall victim to blight and lose these light-cropping but stunning-tasting treats.

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