Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Potatoes rock!

People have been asking me recently what my potato plans are this year. We are lucky enough to have a fabulous Potato Day in our local area whereby you can preorder your seed potatoes in single batches and collect them on the organised potato day in mid February.

This is brilliant because you can try lots of different varieties and also get a mix of first earlies, second earlies, early maincrops and maincrops so you can spread your planting, growing, pulling up, eating and storing activities.

I'm really looking forward to another year of potato growing - it really is incredibly simple and so rewarding - digging up potatoes you've grown yourself is like finding treasure!

These are the key stages:
  • Buy your seed potatoes now
  • Chit your seed potatoes - put them in a light cool dry place for a good few weeks so they sprout really well (I use eggboxes which work perfectly)
  • Plant out your seed potatoes in April - sprouted end up
  • Watch out for frost - cover any plants if frost is due
  • Keep covering up the plant roots with soil so no tubers are uncovered (as they'll go green and poisonous if uncovered)
  • Keep well fed and watered
  • Start digging up first earlies in August
  • Dig up maincrops before first frosts and eat or store (perfect potatoes only) in a cool dry place out of the way of any potential pests

-- Holly Rowan Hesson

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