Listen to the hush…happy potato and herbs

Potatoes don’t like the heat, they don’t like the frost and cold, they don’t like the shade, snails eat them, the are prone to diseases, but when they are happy the buzz is audible.

I don’t see me growing potatoes commercially, so for now I feel free to play around a bit with mixed plantings on the agenda. This photo is of a bed on the border of a shaded area, that I planted with potatoes, tansy, radish and linseed. The plan was for the tansy to be a companion herb for the potatoes, the radishes to harvest quickly and the linseed for prettiness and to see how shade hardy it was.

As it turns out it was a happy mix where there was enough sun for the potatoes and I got the feeling that they all liked growing together. The radishes never got picked and I let the whole lot go to seed, and the linseeds incidentally was the best of all four in shade tolerance, flowering well.

I’ve yet to dig up the potatoes, but I got an excellent yield from a neighboring bed with tansy, chamomile and thyme as friends. Unfortunately I never got to taste one. I took them on my trip to South Australia and had to leave them at the border. So sad. I tried to get the official on duty to take them home, but he assured me it was out of the question. I do, however have a photo…

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