You’d think I might have learned my lesson about how not to store seed potatoes after last years shoot sphaghetti episode. But did I? No, I was too busy being a hippopottowhale as I was affectionately nicknamed during my pregnancy. I didn’t heed Hazel’s advice to store the potatoes in brown bags to delay their sprouting until March. I did have copious amounts of shoot spaghetti on the spuds that were unceremoniously dumped in egg boxes in the cellar. Again!
Anticipating rationed allotment time this year I only saved a few of last years spuds for re-sowing. Our favourite red skinned Robinta and white skinned Nicola, some Gloucester Black Kidney (a heritage variety I’ve not come across anywhere else) and some Peruvian Purples (for the novelty factor of purple potato salad).
Last years post about sprouted potatoes generated lots of helpful tips which included Choclette’s husband suggesting the long shoots could be potted up and would take root to form new plants. And that burying the potatoes with all their tentacles might produce a better yield anyway. Sadly I didn’t remember this before pulling them all off so I can’t put that theory to the test (so much for my blog being a reference guide for improving my gardening skills year on year)!
What I did remember was Rebsie’s affirmation that even the most shrivelled looking potatoes have enough life in them to thrive. A theory I shall be putting to the test as I only saved the very smallest Robinta potatoes, (the ones I couldn’t be bothered to peel if I’m honest!) because we enjoy eating them so much.
The Charlotte and Nicola potatoes were bought from Wilkinsons and rather than buying as many as I think we’ll need I cut the larger potatoes in half – a ‘Dig for Victory’ tip I picked up from my visit to the Imperial War Museum a few years ago.
I’m keeping my fingers and toes crossed for fine weather next Thursday when ‘Operation Plot Taming‘ will commence with the help of my Mum and Dad, without whom last year’s harvest would have been rather paltry.