Digging up sweet potatoes. Sweet.

Country Man’s been combining corn this week. Into the fields early, home after dark. While I’ve become used to this schedule, a girl does get a little stir crazy in this old homestead of ours…

The under ground garden crops have been patiently waiting to burst out of their hiding place, in need of a big strong man to dig them out, to gently wipe the dirt off of their skins and place them softly into a basket for winter keeping . However, since that man is busy, this year they had to settle for a kinda big, kinda strong woman who often sacrifices small produce to hungry, sweet potato-eating dogs.

South Dakota dog

So the other day, with a potato fork and basket in hand, I looked hard labor straight in the face and began digging mounds of sweet potato plants. Over 100, to be exact.

South Dakota potato fork
Despite my good hair day, nice jeans, and three unhelpful helpers, I dug into the sandy soil.

South Dakota kitty
South Dakota dog
It felt mighty good. With an aching back and bleeding fingernails, I dug 1/4 of the first row successfully.

South Dakota potato
And then I got hungry. Stomach eating itself type of hungry.

Just like God intended. Hard work, growling stomach, and at the end of the day, visible results of day’s work.

South Dakota potato

‘scuse the kitty behind.

But I best be going. Lots more where that came from…

South Dakota sweet potatoes
… I’ve got plenty of digging to do. And on a full stomach, this time.


60 thoughts on “Digging up sweet potatoes. Sweet.

  1. You need a big, digging dog like my Shelby the Wonder Shepherd – she probably would have dug them all up and eaten them, too! Love your pictures, as always.

    • My husband mixed sand in with the dirt, and that has helped the sweet potato growth greatly. We’ve got good soil here. Out west where my folks are, they have red dirt and can’t grow anything well.
      Since my husband has been in the field until late, I decided to take a photo for proof of my hair. I had only dug several plants before taking the picture, because it got pretty dirty going forward.

  2. What are you going to make with all those sweet potatoes? My mouth is watering just thinking about it. Sweet potato pie?

  3. I didn’t plant a garden this year (first time in…? well ever) and your potatoes really make me wish I had! My husband is away at his last horse show for the season and he’s got some combining awaiting him when he gets home! Soy beans first, then corn. I think it’s gonna be a looooong autumn. πŸ˜‰

  4. One hundred plants… mounds?? Egad! I only planted six sweet potato vines and we got HUGE tubers off of four of them, the others normal sized. What on earth do you do with that many?

    I miss harvest time in Nebraska. Here in Oklahoma peanut harvest will soon begin and then follows the cotton.

    • We do two long mounds, and yes, 100 plants! We store them in the basement all winter, and eat them almost nightly with deer, antelope, elk or beef. Also, we make a big batch of sweet potato pancake batter and freeze them in quart size bags to eat throughout the winter.
      I imagine cotton harvest to be really pretty. Think I will google that to see how it looks.

      • My little Farm Girl forgot to tell you… she made sweet potato pancakes using the recipe you shared with us last year to try out the huge bunch of tubers off the first plant we dug up. That is now, officially our new, favorite pancake recipe (had some for breakfast this morning)! The rest she made into spicy sweet potato fries! Mmm… wouldn’t those be good with back-strap steaks?! Uh, Farm Girl… I know what I want for supper…

  5. Ooooh sounds kinda like fun. I’m sure the novelty wears off though. My dogs love sweet potatoes, I dry slices for them as treats. I myself only like SP in fry form, horrible right? Sounds like I will be stocking up soon when they go on sale here. But this year I will stay away from the mandolin slicer, to avoid a repeat of last year.
    Have fun!

  6. This post reminds me of a chore given to my brothers, sisters, and I as children…weeding the family garden and “hilling” potatoes…(not my favorite) I must say. Fortunately, I still love gardening; though I have never planted any potatoes….I buy them from a local farmstand.

    I love,love mashed sweet potatoes…yumcious!


    • It’s a lot of work, isn’t it? I dug up the regular potatoes, which wasn’t so bad since we plant much less compared to the sweet potatoes. We’ve tried sweet potatoes various ways, and so far, cut thinly and placed on a baking sheet, brushed with olive oil and sprinkled with Lawry’s is our favorite.

  7. First of all, let me just say, yes you WERE having a good hair day!! LOL You’re a gorgeous farmerette! I can never get enough of these pictures and stories. I wonder if Uncle Jesse would like sweet potatoes…

  8. You can garden and still look that good! Wow! If I am just pulling a few weeds I look like a schlumpa-dinka. Sweet potatoes must be a very good source of ‘gee your hair looks terrific’ vitamins! Will have tonight.

    • lol, well, I had dug a few and then took the pic. I still had a ways to go, and that’s when the dirt and bloody fingernails came. Sweet potatoes have some amazing health benefits: vitamin A, beta-carotene, balances the digestive system, and has proven to help with colon problems. Maybe I should just do a post on this. πŸ™‚

      Thank you for stopping in!

  9. I love reading your posts. They remind me of my days spent growing up on a farm. Oh, wait, I didn’t grow up on a farm. But when I read posts like this, I like to pretend I did.

  10. and it will be wonderful to have that full basket in the house when you need to eat them. Food is getting kind of expensive around the Midwest and it is nice to have homegrown food that you don’t have to pay for and know what is in it.
    I bet Country Man is happy you went ahead and dug while he was harvesting!

  11. You weren’t just having a good hair day … it was a GORGEOUS hair day! Can’t believe you look that good after a day in the garden digging! I love that your animals cluster all around you no matter what you’re doing — what a sweet life!!

    • Thanks Betty! All photos were taken at the beginning, because I wouldn’t be able to hold my camera much afterward. As for the animals, they are so much fun to have around. I am hoping to find out sweet potatoes are an anti-aging vegetable and they’ll stay around for a long time πŸ™‚

  12. Yum Yum!

    My favorite sweet potato recipe: Peel and slice into thick slices or long spears; toss in olive oil and spread into a single layer on a cookie sheet. Add sliced onion & fresh garlic; sprinkle liberally with salt free Mrs. Dash and bake till carmelized (the sw. potatoes will curl a bit) – about 25-30 min on 350. YUM!!

    Cheers, MJ

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