So yesterday being the first weekend in March, it was time for our annual outing to Potato Day and, worryingly, I realised that this is now our fourth (or our third to the Kelso one as the Bigtown one was a bit more low key). Even more worrying is the realisation that we’re now beginning to get the hang of the whole thing – we even remembered to bring a bag and get there early (10 minutes after the doors opened; it was still packed) although we still didn’t remember any reading material for the other half. Still, he made himself useful picking up the potatoes I was getting for my mum and a fellow gardener in the village and then retired for coffee and cake while I wandered around making my selection. At a competitive event like Potato Day, especially when you’re up against the determined opposition of the massed gardeners of the Scottish Borders, this is a risky strategy but I like to keep my options open in case there’s an amusing looking one or something with a funny name.
Amazingly, last year I managed to grow exactly the right number of potatoes to keep us through the winter so I knew how many I needed although, as is traditional, I have completely lost track of which ones are which variety so my plan of gradually building on experience to home in on the perfect potato is a little stymied. I did remember that Vales Emerald was particularly successful last year – and that Shetland Dark were particularly decorative the year before. My mum swears by Pink Fir Apple and everyone else raves about Charlotte so I gave those a whirl (although I now realise from looking up my old blogs that I grew Charlotte last year as well and completely forgot so they clearly didn’t leave much of an impression). I filled in the gaps with Highland Burgundy and something else whose name I’ve forgotten but which I’m sure will be wonderful.
That leaves my seed order, which I still haven’t done, not that I’m panicking or anything. Much. I do have some emergency broad beans and some leek seeds which the landlord had left over so it might be time to clear out the shed windowsill, prepare my pots and start thinking about the growing season ahead…
What with the weather, waterlogged ground and blight last year was a poor year for potatoes here. I’m growing Vales Emerald and Charlotte, which are one of my favourites, again this year.
Still plenty of time to do a seed order, but don’t leave it too late! xx
Lady Balfour, I like the name.
Flighty – the waterlogging didn’t seem to affect our potatoes, fortunately – everything else suffered though
John – I didn’t try those, may give them a whirl next year
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We have a great local greengrocer who stocks various types of potatoes, none particularly unusual, but we have found that Wija cook and taste fantastic. Perhaps it’s just in comparison with the tasteless supermarket brands.
I’ll have to look out for that next time
Oops spelling mistake – I meant Wilja. Doh.
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