Dobies' seed potatoes
The only way to savour the superb tastes and textures of new potatoes is when you, dig, prepare and cook them, all in the space of an hour or two. and the only real way to do this is to grow your own potatoes.
- How do I plant my seed potatoes?
When your seed potatoes arrive unpack them and place them in trays (an egg boxworks well or you can use a wooden tray) in a light, cool, airy frost free place to develop the sprouts prior to planting. This will enable your seed potatoes to grow much faster once they are planted in the ground. The pre-sprouting is a process called chitting.
Dig a trench about 10cm (4") deep using our Garden Ridger is the easiest way to do this. Place the seed potatoes in the bottom with the sprouts facing upwards.Fill the trench to cover the seed potatoes and a top dressing of Potato Fertiliser can be applied to boost growth. As the shoots emerge it is important to "earth up" (cover them with soil) to protect them from frost which will cause the shoots to blacken and delay cropping. During prolonged periods of dry weather you will need to water regularly to enable the tubers to form.
When the stems have grown to 25cm (10") above ground level they should be "earthed up" again to prevent the tubers near the surface turning green. Lift early potatoes when the flowers start to open and the tubers are the size of large eggs. Maincrop varieties potatoes should generally be left at least two weeks after the leaves and stems have withered, cut the stems just above soil level to prevent diseases such as blight getting into the crop. Lift the tubers gently from underneath with a Potato Fork or with our Potato Harvesting Scoop. The lifted potatoes should be left on the surface of the soil for a couple of hours to allow the skins to cure before being stored in paper or Hessian Sacks. Potatoes stored in plastic bags will sweat and begin to rot very quickly.
BENEFITS OF SEED POTATOES
• The potato is now a staple food for two thirds of the World's population.
• An acre of land planted with potatoes produces four times as much food as the same plot planted with corn and is much easier to harvest and prepare.
• Potatoes are the world's leading non-grain food crop.
• Britain produces six million tonnes of potatoes a year involving 3,400 commercial growers.
• Boiled potatoes have the 2nd highest concentration of folic acid after bread. Baked in its skin, an average sized spud contains over 30% of the Recommended Daily Allowance.
• Potatoes contain no cholesterol.
• Potatoes provide approx 15% of Britain's Vitamin C intake. Rice and pasta provide none whatever.
• The British Nutrition Foundation says that one of the keys to healthy weight-loss is to eat 'more carbohydrate-rich foods such as potatoes'.
• Potatoes are 72-75% water, 16-20% carbohydrate, 2-2.5% protein, 0.15% fatty acids, 1-1.8% dietary fibre.
• Potatoes actually top bananas in potassium content: a medium banana contains roughly 450 mg, while a medium baked potato or 20 French fries contains 750 mg.
• One medium potato supplies, on average, 30 mg vitamin C, nearly as much as in a glass of tomato juice and 1.5 mg iron, which is around the same amount as in an egg.