Our root-cellar-in-a-box overflows with potatoes

Our root-cellar-in-a-box overflows with potatoes. Photo by Rory Groves

Spring starts with a bang around here—planting seeds, preparing beds, mulching and weeding. Throughout the summer we enjoy fresh greens, ripe strawberries, and the incomparable BLT (with our own bacon and tomatoes). But by harvest time in Fall, we are ready to whimper. We often find ourselves too tired to preserve the harvest we worked so hard to cultivate all summer long.

Spring's inspiration to "build a root cellar this year!" has faded along with our energy levels, which are focused by this time on splitting wood and settling in for winter. The root cellar will have to wait, yet again.

But what to do with the Yukon Golds, the Red Norlands, the Danvers Carrots? Over the years, we've tried many approaches to storing root vegetables with varying results. But our spuds kept sprouting within a few months and the carrots would dry out, leaving us without homegrown roots for most of the winter.

all hands on deck for the potato harvest

9/16/2021 3:25:38 PM

I am moving to a small home in Kansas and the basement is partially finished. That meaning the center is concrete floor and walls are concrete and 5'6" tall with dirt behind them on 3 sides with about 4 feet width of dirt. Can I utiilize this area of dirt for storing vegetables etc? Any ideas or suggestions are greatly appreciated!

9/10/2021 6:49:57 AM

Worth trying! We have had some success with carrots layered with sawdust. But the sawdust tends to draw moisture from the carrots a little bit. The peat moss sounds like a better solution.

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