Wild Potatoes

Discussion in 'General Food and Foraging Discussion' started by Big B, Nov 3, 2008.

  1. Big B

    Big B Well-Known Member

    Does anybody know anything about wild potatoes?
    I had an old fellow mention that there are about seven varieties of wild potatoes that grow everywhere in North America.
    He said that they were small, thumbnail size and very common.
    I lost track of him and never followed through with his story.
  2. ke4sky

    ke4sky ke4sky

    Heirloom potatoes

    I found this reference:
    Heirloom Potatoes: 2000s Archive : gourmet.com

    Potatoes come in all the same natural colors of the other members of the genus Solanumto which they are botanically related (eggplants, peppers, and tomatoes, for example). Generally, this means red, purple and blue (the color varies greatly due to soil), yellow, orange, pink, and white.

    The natives of the high Andes, where potatoes originated, enjoy thousands of different varieties and colors. They shrug off the potatoes we grow in North America and Europe as rather bland and uninteresting, yet to us many of their potatoes taste somewhat bitter or sharp. This is because potatoes with a lot of pigments in the skin or flesh carry different genetic material inherited from wild potatoes, which rely on their bad taste to fend off animals. This natural defense system is still present in the plant itself and is toxic to humans and many animals. It is also found in potatoes that turn green (a sign that they’ve been improperly exposed to light), so never buy potatoes with green spots on their skin.

    Interested in growing your own heirlooms?
    Contact Seed Savers Exchange in Decorah, Iowa (319-382-5990).

  3. dunappy

    dunappy Well-Known Member

    Yes I have some growing in my gardens (Native plants they just grow and I let them in case I ever need them). They are tiny, tiny things, hard to located and dig up, takes tons to make any kind of meal at all, and they are quite bitter. Yea I tried them once.

    You are better off getting a setting of seed potatos and saving some seed potatos each year then to try and cultivate the wild ones.
  4. Carley

    Carley New Member

    Hello everybody. This is a nice post. We can share whatever we want with the people from all of the world.
  5. bunkerbob

    bunkerbob Supporting Member

    WELCOME, :welcome:Carley from a long time preparer. Look forward to your replies and posts. Don't forget to intro yourself in the introduction thread.