There is nothing like the thrill of turning over the soil and uncovering a cluster of creamy new potatoes which gleam out of the rich soil. Unless it is 2012 that is. With the wet weather the wireworms and slugs have thrived. The former drill little holes into the spuds through which the latter enter and start eating and excreting.
The bowl on the left (2/3) contains all the infested portions.
The pan on the right (1/3) all the salvageable chunks.
(As you bite you must have faith that if there is no hole going in or out
then all you are going to taste is nice new potato!)
Last year I bought nematodes, which have to be kept moist, if you do that they will eat all the baby slugs from the inside out - rough justice. The drought conditions must have killed them (we only have water butts and no mains in the 'big garden') buy luckily it also kept the slug numbers down.
After that experience I decided not to waste my money on nematodes that I can't keep moist
and look what's happened.
I was thinking of giving up growing new potatoes. But then a miracle ...
and I have a wireworm to thank for the neat little eye hole. If he looked a little more like Jesus and a little less like Mr Magoo I would feel even more blessed (and no doubt be quids in).
Instead we ate him the night before last.
On a happier note the garden is producing plenty of nice things too.