Potato Growing

Ballinderry, Co. Galway

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Potatoes are sown in this locality in ridges and drills. It is easier to sow them in drills than ridges because a horse can do the work when they are sown like that. It is harder to sow potatoes in ridges because a man has to lay out the ridges himself unless it is lea land where a horse can be used. When potatoes are sown in drills it is usually in land where a crop of oats or something else was taken from it the year before. First the field is ploughed then it is harrowed and drilled by means of a plough. then they leave the slits on the dike and cover them with clay by means of a shovel. Then they put the manure over them and they close them with a plough. They call this “sticking” and they prefer it to any other way. The other way they sow potatoes in drills is they spread the farmyard manure on the dikes, spread the slits and then close them with a plough.  When potatoes are sown in ridges the first thing they do is to lay them out. Then they spread the manure on the grass and leave the slit on top of it and cover it with clay by means of a spade. Wooden ploughs that were used entirely long ago. they did not know about iron ploughs that time. There is not one of these ploughs to be seen now. When the potatoes are just beginning to come up they are “landed” which means clay is put up with them to keep them strong. When they come to be a good height they are sprayed. This spray preserves the crop from blight. Three times the crop is sprayed. In the autumn, the potatoes are dug and picked. They are put into a hole called a pit and preserved there until they are needed

Collector: Unknown

Informant: Patrick Freany, Ballynastuckaun, Co. Galway

Place: Ballinderry, Co. Galway

Footnote: Duchas, http://www.duchas.ie

This page was added on 14/05/2017.

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