The other week I couldn’t stop myself and popped into the garden centre and got myself a bag of Desiree seed potatoes. They cost us £3.99 for about 40 which isn’t bad, as you’re talking 40 plants that will give you a good few spuds on each come harvest time in September, well worth it!
The first thing I’ll be doing is encouraging the seeds to sprout or “chitting” them, which will give them a head-start before planting them outside. We’re not talking the long pale shoots that you see when potatoes have sprouted after being stored in the dark, but ones that are short and sturdy. It’s worth chitting spuds before planting as their shoots usually appear in the ground a couple of weeks before seed spuds that haven’t.
All you basically do is stand the seed potato’s upright in a container (a seed tray or a cardboard egg box) with the blunt end of the tuber upwards (the end that has the “eyes”). Make sure the container is in a cool position with natural light and where’s there’s no risk of frost. I’ve stuck mine on the floor in the back room by the patio doors. Fingers crossed I don’t stand on them when I’m half asleep doing me tai-chi in the morning!