Perry Hill Farm is participating in the NOFA-NY 2008 Variety Trials. NOFA-NY (Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York) sent us 5 different varieties of potatoes to grow and gather data on their performance. We were sent the following: Adirondack Blue, Ambra, Eva, Early Ohio and Yukon Gold as the control. These trials are to see what other organic varieties of potatoes will do well in New York.
We are using raised beds in our garden this year. Each bed is approximately 5 X 8'. The beds are created using permaculture ideas and practices. We are using materials on the farm to create these raised beds. The process of building these beds reminds me of making lasagna. We have a layer of fresh manure/compost/hay then cardboard. This cardboard does not contain ink. The cardboard we are using was recycled from our solar electric installations. Instead of going to the recycling bins of our local town transfer station, we are utilizing this cardboard here on the farm. We then have a layer of dirt mixed with a layer of aged compost. Finally, there will be old hay and straw used for the mulch around the plants.
The potatoes were all planted on May 7. Each variety is in it's own raised bed. The first plants to emerge were the Adirondack Blue on May 15th. A beautiful purple small potato sprouted beautiful purplish green plants. The Early Ohio's also emerged the same day. The last to emerge was the Ambra on May 21st. Yukon Gold and Eva emerged on May 19th. The plants were very healthy and did not seem to have too many pests at this point.
A great harvest! This was a fun experiment and we are so grateful to have had the opportunity to participate in the Potato Trials for NOFANY. Our combined harvest yielded 136lbs of potatoes. The best variety for us was the Ohio Early potatoes. They yielded 48lbs with 258 tubers. The Adirondack Blue variety did well and the Eva's produced large perfect baking potatoes.
Joshua helping to plant the potatoes
Adirondack Blue plant
Adirondack Blue as of June 15
Adirondack Blue Flowers
Aerial photo by Hudson Valley Photo All other photos were taken at Perry Hill Farm by Vicki Harkness.