Growing Seed Potatoes

The humble potato might not be exciting, but they are easy to grow and can be cooked in so many different ways. In fact, because of its versatility, the potato could well be the most valuable vegetable in the kitchen.

Created by Martyn Loach on Thursday, 24th of January, 2013.
Updated on Friday, 19th of April, 2019.


Seed Potatoes

Potatoes are impressively adaptable, able to be boiled, baked or fried, and so easy to grow. I would say, if you only grow one vegetable in your garden this year it should be potatoes.

Newer Varieties

Romano is one of the newer varieties of seed potatoes to look for that is making an impact on our palates. It's a red skinned variety of early potato that is an excellent baker. It is set to oust the ever popular Desiree as the best red, maybe?

Wilja is a second early crop potato which was introduced from Holland in 1972, with a characteristic yellow Dutch flesh. Wilja established itself because it is so clean and adaptable to use.    

Old Favourites

Of course the older varieties are still in great demand, particularly King Edward and the ever popular Maris Piper. Both of these main crop varieties exhibit a creamy white flesh and floury texture. Use either of them boiled, mashed, baked, roasted, sautéed or chipped and you will get first class results.

They can be used even in salads but Arran Pilot or Home Guard will give better results. These, and most other early varieties are rich in Vitamin C. Dig them out of the garden and serve them on the table the same day to enjoy them at their delicious best.

How To Grow

To grow potatoes successfully set the seed out in a light frost free room to allow the shoots to sprout. They will be ready for planting when the strongest shoots are 1-2 inches long.

Place them every 12 inches along the rows, with each row 24 -30 inches apart. Draw soil over the tubers until they are covered to a depth of 3-4 inches When the plants are 3 inches high draw more soil over them, completely covering the growth.

The early varieties will be ready for lifting after about 12 weeks, some 10 weeks before the main crop.     

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