Seed Potatoes

Potatoes can be grown in practically every type of soil. Choose a sunny spot if possible. Dig the soil in autumn and add peat or compost if the soil was not manured for the previous crop. Handle your seed potatoes with care. Do not drop bags onto hard surfaces as this can cause bruising and crushing.

Planting

As soon as you can obtain your seed potatoes set them out, shoots uppermost, in trays containing a layer of 1" of dry peat. Keep them in a light frost-free room so that there will be sturdy 1/2" to1" shoots at planting time.

Planting times

First earlies - February, March
Second earlies - March, April
Maincrops - April
Should the weather be too wet or cold, all varieties may be planted up until the end of April.

Care of the crop

  • If there is still a danger of frost when the shoots have emerged, draw a little soil over them for protection
  • When the haulm or stem is about 9" high it is time for earthing up. Use a draw hoe to pile loose soil to make a ridge 6" high
  • If the weather is dry, flood the trenches between the ridges

Harvesting


With Earlies, wait until the flowers or buds wither. Then carefully remove soil from a small part of the ridge and examine the tubers. They are ready for harvesting when they are the size of a hen's egg. Insert the fork into the ridge well away from the haulm. Lift the roots forward into the trench.
With Maincrops for storage, cut off the withered stems, remove them and wait 10 days. then lift the roots and let the tubers dry for several hours. Then place them in a suitable container and store them in the dark inside a frost-free room or shed.

STAR TIP!

Handle seed potatoes with great care - do not drop bags on hard surfaces which may cause bruising. Avoid exposure of seed to frost and draughts