Tuesday, 21 August 2012

New potatoes and Nasties. Nematodes next year?

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.


  1. oy! bugs in the garden (with the exception of bees and ladybugs!) cause the heebie jeebies in me. to find them in one of my foods i think i would faint. (what can i say, i am a whimp!)
    it is going to be intereing to see if with better weather next year the nematodes help. i try very hard to use no chemicals in my yards and am always happy to learn of new ways to keep things going well. the colors of your squash and cukes are really lovely. deep bright and i like that that are small, so seeds have not gone wild! beautiful post.

  2. Don't you just love this time of year with all the fresh veggies? The worms I can do without, but it's worth it for the lovely fruits and vegetables...

  3. That looks great, what a cool potato. Good you found it.

  4. So sorrry about the worms! I do love new potatoes.

  5. Creative potato! ~ Love it ~ Glad your garden has other goodies! ~ (A Creative Harbor)

  6. Australian 'new potatoes' are nothing like as scrumptious as English New Potatoes. Reading your blog made me feel quite homesick. Except for the bugs!

  7. Great and funny shots. I love potatoes!!

  8. Sorry about the worms. I've been helping in a community garden and just pulled the lovely red potatoes yesterday. Can't wait to cook them up. We're inundated with zucchini, crookneck, green beans, pepper and all kinds of other goodies...not complaining!! No, not even a little!!

    I do love the Mr. Magoo potato, though! :)

  9. That has got to be awesome, eating what you grow. I remember as a kid we had fruit trees and bushes and I used to love going to pick something for a snack. The neighbor used to grow cucumbers, tomatoes and peppers. I used to love picking a tomato and just biting into the warm fruit. People here in the city, don't understand why I like my berries and fruit warm. They think I am weird. I love it, I miss the days of picking and eating something warmed up by the summer sun.

  10. Aww, Mr. Magoo was a cutie in his short lifetime! I don't have a garden but am going to be watching closely when cutting into some new potatoes from the store!!

  11. What a cool potato! So sorry you have had such problems with the bugs this year.

  12. mmmm, fresh veggies are one of my favourite things about summer :)



  13. What cool potato! I love the face!

  14. This was a neat post! I really liked it! That potato face was amazing! I could live without the annoying pests that ruin our food! :(

  15. Oh man.

    Nasty worms eating your yummy potatoes before you could!

    I like the potato face, though!

    Thanks for the smile!

    Hope next year is worm free!

    Or worm free-er!

    Thanks for linking.




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