Your Potato Handbook

Published in the October 2009 Issue Published online: Oct 16, 2009 Tyler J. Baum, Editor
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We hope you're enjoying the improvements we've made to Potato Grower magazine so far. As you're probably starting to notice as you've picked up this issue, that includes the annual October issue-the Industry Directory. We've consolidated and updated and labored to make sure this issue is better than it's ever been.

So we're even changing the name of it to the Industry Handbook. Why handbook?

According to, a handbook is a "book of instruction or guidance" or a manual. Don't we need more of those?

Because I grew up in rural Idaho, I joined the ranks of the Boy Scouts of America as an official Boy Scout when I was 11. In the process of pursuing the ultimate Scout ranking, the Eagle Scout award, I used a book to help get me there. A very thick book, with lots of tabs and concise, to-the-point information. I did a lot of the work to pursue my Eagle-so did my mother, of course-but the book provided guidance to help me attain that award. That handbook was the Boy Scout handbook. It's been updated several times over the course of nearly a century, but it's still a valuable book, even if you're not a Boy Scout but still like to go camping and want to make sure you know how to identify poison ivy or tie a taut-line hitch.

The University of Idaho Research and Extension has recently provided a simple and easy-to-use handbook called the "Field Guide to Potato Pests," which clearly documents all kinds of pests such as nematodes, weeds, diseases and insects.

Which brings us to the Potato Grower Industry Handbook. Our goal in revamping the Industry Directory into the Industry Handbook was to make this issue more current-as current as a print magazine can be-and more user-friendly so that you can keep this issue in your pickup, along with your travel phonebook, as a convenient reference. We've provided the listings of companies and organizations in chemicals, equipment, seed and irrigation and have all divided them up into categories that are easy to find.

Please let us know how we can improve on it each year so we can help you use this handbook as a useful resource.