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Free Tomatoes and Potatoes

Big Boy tomatoesIt is very relaxing and rewarding to plant your own herbs and vegetables.  You don’t even have to have a “green thumb” for planting these vegetables, and fruits, as you most likely will correct me, and call a tomato a fruit, rather than a vegetable.

I feel that some plants require much more care than others.  I have a hard time planting onions and carrots, as for some reason they just do not turn out as nice and appealing as the ones in the store.  If you have any suggestions, please share them, so I will perhaps give myself another chance with these two.

However, growing tomatoes and potatoes is so easy, and this year especially, as they turned out totally free.

Last year I bought a couple of tomato plants, one Beefsteak Tomato plant, and one Cherry Tomato plant.  They both did very well, and produced lots of fruits.  Some of these fruits fell off the plant and worked themselves into the ground, so this year I noticed free tomato plants sprouting in my garden.  I let them grow into at least 6 inch plants, before transplanting them into a more suitable location.

So, here is my first picking of my free Cherry Tomatoes, which grew even larger in size this year, than last year:

Free Cherry Tomatoes

I already mentioned in my previous posts that I like to turn my vegetable kitchen scraps into compost, so I have been doing that during last fall and early spring.  I dug up several deep rows in my garden, kept on filling them up with the veggie scraps, covered them with dirt, and left them there until it was time to prepare the garden for planting.  Most of them were already decomposed, but some still stayed intact.

The excitement came in late April, when I noticed that besides the self seeded tomato plants, I also had numerous Pepper plants(not sure yet what color they will be) and potato plants, sprouting from my compost rows.  Since these plants self seeded themselves, they were hardier to survive any weather changes, as spring has kind of unpredictable weather most of the time.

Eventually I will share the peppers cultivated from these plants, but here are my free potatoes.

Potato crop from one plantThese Red Potatoes are a result of one piece of a potato which I must have discarded together with the potato peels.  I was very pleasantly surprised when the potato plant dried up, thus a sign that it is time to harvest the crop, and I found all of the above potatoes under that plant.  Amazing, don’t you agree?

I also told you that some of the potato peels sprouted as well, and these plants of course were much weaker, as the peels did not have much nutrition to feed the plant, unlike the potato chunk.

Nonetheless, they still managed to produce some potatoes.  Can you believe this, growing potatoes from a potato peel?

Here they are, free Russet Potatoes.

Free Russet Potatoes

These are baking potatoes, so the skin is darker and thicker than the Red Potatoes.  Since these are a product from only potato peels, they are much smaller.  The larger ones are the size of an egg, and the smallest ones are the size of a grape.

I am still in a total disbelief that potato peels had enough nutrition to produce these potatoes.  I could have let them grow a little longer, to give them a chance to get larger, but I needed to dig them up as the tops were totally gone, and they just grew in between my other vegetables, not exactly where I would normally plant a potato.

So you see how easy it is to grow plants in your garden, even from scraps!

If next year you wish to try growing your own potatoes, I will post easy to follow potato growing instructions.

All you will need is at least one chunk of a potato, and a place to plant it.

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