The majority of people probably never bother to take the time to prepare their seed potatoes and simply stand them in a tray ready to chit
When showing, you need to take extra care to ensure you don't carry any disease through on the potato, so why should you take this care when growing for normal.
I take each potato and wash it with a sponge under running water. You don't need to overs scrub too hard but you need to get it reasonably clean without breaking the skin. You will be surprised what is unearthed once the potato is clean. I then remove and bin any potato which has scab, as although there is many debates on whether or not scab transfers to the new yield but every time I have had scabby potatoes, they have produced scabby potatoes. Whether showing or eating, I don't want scabby potatoes.
Once clean, I then dry off with paper towel and then stand on more kitchen towel to dry some more. Then I stand them in a tray ready to chit. Make sure you stand them upright. This may sound simple, but you need to ensure they eyes are at the top. The bottom of the potato will have a mark where it was connected to the plant.
Some of the varieties I am going to try this year are Blue Belle, Bonnie and Winston
Blue Belle has a lovely deep coloured face which is more purple than blue
Bonnie is more rounded with a pink red'ish face
When freshly dug, Winston is probably one of the purest whitest potatoes there is, one of the top performers on the show bench but taste awful
Good advice I'll be checking out my spuds closely!
Thanks for the post Darren, some great advice.
Very good advise, Darren. Thanks!
that looks like the plan for me too, this year I want to get them off to the best start possiable
Once they start chitting i spray them once a week with a mild seaweed extract solution. They seem to love it. They have not told me but you see that look in their eye's.
Gary, I know some top showers who recommend the same.
Some also use Maxicrop as do I
I pretty much prepare my tatties the same as Darren although I've never sprayed them once they have started to chit. (Think I will this year) The only difference is from Darren is that I do not nesessarily bin tatties which have a little scab on them. The main debate is usually in gardeners circles. The farming circles which I also work in do not see this as a problem. However when growing limited numbers I can see the thought process and why take the risk. I make my decision based on number of seed tatties available and number I want to grow & to be honest I have found no difference.
Yeah I get from JBA. I asked for mine to be delivered week starting 12th Feb. This will give me approx 6 weeks to chit them. I've ordered Amour, Purple eyed Seedling, Kestral & Pixie. I have kept my own Maxine and Blue Belle. My Whites from JBA are Sherine, Casablanca, The Bishop and Harmony. So hope to grow about 130 to 140 bags. But need to make a better job of watering this year.
I was only talking about purple eyed seedling today
I am told it use to be a top show variety
I don't know what it looks like
This is a variety that has been "cleaned up" using stem cuttings and micro tubers. It had become so badly infested with viruses etc that you could not get exhibition size tubers. Anyway JBA were instrumental in growing it on. It has dark purple splashes not unlike a "good" coloured Kestral but with a clearer skin and more rounded.
I will see if I can pick some up at the local potato day