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Monday, 10 September 2018

Harvesting the Potatoes

The time has come at last to start harvesting the potatoes. Everything is late this year. We left it till later before we started this autumn to give the potatoes as long as possible to grow.

Some of them are still pretty small and slip through the web of the harvester and are lost. My niece managed to pick up quite a few for her tea!

Meanwhile husband and little one looked on.

He is such a happy little chappie.

There is something else a bit different about the field for this time of year. Normally by now the helm would have been sprayed to make it die off preventing the potatoes from continuing to grow. This year we want them to continue increasing in size.

You may be thinking that this would make a good choice for A Field of Plenty. The reality is that the likely tonnage of potatoes is far less than last year. Although the price of a 25kg bag is £9.50 as oppose to £5 at the end of last season it is quite likely that the actual profit will be little more this season.
That's farming for you.


  1. That seems quite an increase/bag, but certainly a welcome one. Does the price vary that much year to year, or is this unusual? My mother-in-law grew up on a farm, and tells stories of going out early in the day to start picking potatoes by hand. Her parents owned a farm equipment business so there must not have been potato harvester at that time.

    1. The price does fluctuate but yes this is quite a dramatic change. Last year was very low and this year is high.

  2. Ah, I thought the haulm was sprayed off to make the potatoes easier to harvest. Perhaps this is true too? They seem to harvest them a bit later here in West Suffolk, through October and even November. I’ve got fields of potatoes in front and behind our plot and they were still irrigating two weeks ago. We have quite sandy soil here.

    1. Hello Phillip. Thank you for visiting my blog. Yes the haulm ( and thank you for the correct spelling!!!) is usually sprayed off to make the harvesting easier once the potatoes have grown to a good size. However this year anymore growth will be a bonus! Normally we also spray with a growth regulator we also haven't done this year.
      We normally in harvest and store from mid September to October. The ones we are harvesting here are to sell straight away. The skins are not fully set yet so they are not ready to store and also the weather is too warm.

  3. Ah the plight of farmers - not only subject to the weather but the market prices. Such a beautiful field of plenty photo. I like when the local markets have freshly dug potatoes for sale & I do prefer the smaller ones. We in Canada are having a re-investment of notoriety into our farms, both nationally & locally, which I believe is long over due.