Seedy Saturday and Sunday Organic Potato and Shallot Varieties:
First Earlies: MARIS BARD
A cream skinned and white fleshed oval tuber variety. Produces a medium waxy potato which holds its shape making it good for boiling and chipping, and a delight in salads. A fast growing and high yielding crop can be expected. It is considered a gourmet variety on account of its very fine flavour.
First Earlies: COLLEEN
A good all-rounder – good in the kitchen and high yielding. High disease and pest resistance give this white tuber a good appeal to all growers looking for a bountiful harvest. Colleen is an early bulking variety with waxy flesh and also has medium dry matter. Particularly good for baking and chips as well as being an excellent new potato – it has good disease resistance.
Second Earlies: CHARLOTTE
Charlotte is best known for its culinary excellence, of course it is French. Best eaten fresh as a salad it can be stored up till Christmas. It is noted for good resistance against slugs and common scab leading to good appearance. Charlotte potatoes have a fresh flavour which tastes great either hot or cold. They are ideal boiled as part of a salad as they hold their shape well and can even be roasted whole. It is a high yielding variety and is a well-deserved favourite amongst gardeners for its reliability.
Main Crop: SETANTA
Maincrop red skin variety which doesn’t suffer blight easily making it ideal for organic and allotment growing whilst still appealing to large growers for high resistance to blight and blackleg. In the kitchen, good for baking, boiling, roasting, and chipping. Another high yielding variety.
Main Crop: ARRAN VICTORY
A very popular Heritage variety. Named on the Isle of Arran after the first World War, first marketed in 1918 and bred by Donald McKelvie.
This round to oval tuber has consistently been popular with growers due to high yields and long seasons. Distinct blue/purple skin covers white flesh, which although it will mash well it does fall apart when boiling. They have a good earthy taste and make the best roast potatoes
in the world! It has very little blight resistance but if we have another summer like last year that shouldn’t be an issue!
SHALLOT Sets: MELOINE
Meloine is a great tasting shallot that will compliment any dish they’re added to. They are a heavy cropping variety with round, plump bulbs producing reddish-yellow skinned shallots. They have a great resistance to downy mildew and store very well.
Infinity Foods Potato Growing Info:
When you get your seed potatoes home take them out and put them on the windowsill to “chit”. This starts them off growing and you’ll soon start to see the “eyes” on the potatoes start to sprout and grow. This gives them a head start for when they actually get planted.
You don’t need to do anything more at this stage except put them in the light to get them going. All potatoes need to be planted after there is no risk of any frosts – usually the end of March is fine. Traditionally Good Friday was a day when people weren’t working and had some
time to get out into the garden and plant. Plant in a sunny spot if possible or at least not in a completely shady position. The better start you can give them the better the likelihood of a good harvest! First Earlies will be harvested first, usually around May – June, then the Second Earlies are harvested in July and the Main Crop potatoes are harvested September – end October. When harvesting check first by having a rummage around the potato roots to see how they are doing and whether they are ready. If you feel they could get a bit bigger, then leave them for a couple more weeks and give them another feed.
The planting distances vary. As the First Earlies give a smaller crop, they can be planted around a foot apart, the Second Earlies give a more substantial crop and can be planted about 15 – 18 inches apart and the Main Crop potatoes get planted up to 2 ft apart to
hopefully help to ensure a bumper crop.
Enrich the soil with manure or soil conditioner and plant about 6-8inches deep. Some people plant them in a row, some people plant them individually mounding up the soil around them. Once they have started growing, you’ll need to earth them up as it is the stems beneath the ground that produce the potatoes. Don’t forget to do this as you won’t get many potatoes unless you do! Keep your potato plants well-watered, especially in dry weather and once they start flowering give them a foliar feed or a high potash feed to help the potatoes grow big. Its also possible to grow potatoes in containers – try and give some space and aim for no more than 2-3 tubers per potato grower. First or Second Earlies are probably best to grow in containers as they are harvested before full summer sets in and the difficulty in keeping containers watered isn’t so much of an issue.
Unpack and spread out in a cool, light place. Plant from late March onwards as weather conditions permit. Allow approximately 30cm between rows and 15cm between
bulbs. Plant somewhere that gets sun at least part of the day. Shallots grow like a “hand” with one bulb producing many shallots. Plant with the bulb’s half in the soil and half out. Lift crop when leaves turn yellow, dry in a sunny spot, and store under cool, dry frost-free