Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Chitting Potatoes

Monday was a mixed bag of weather, some sunny spells but then some short sharp showers and a gradually falling temperature.

Having decided to put gardening on hold for a few weeks and wait for some better weather that idea went out of the window when our seed potatoes arrived from Alan Romans.
Arriving as they do at this time of year it a tricky decision deciding the best place to keep them. They could go in the garage and be kept in the dark for a few weeks where they will be safe from any frosty weather or go into the greenhouse in boxes in the light to allow them to start chitting.

Our potatoes in storage in the garage have managed to grow a few sprouts due to the mild winter so far. Bearing this in mind I’ve decided to take a bit of a risk and to put the potatoes in the greenhouse, set out in boxes, which will allow them to chit by forming tiny sprouts before planting which will be early April.
The potatoes are now set out in old supermarket boxes on the greenhouse shelving with the varieties each carefully labelled. The boxes are into their second recycling life as they were used to store last summer’s potato harvest in the garage. They’ll probably make their way down to the plot in April when the potatoes are planted and once emptied chopped up and placed in one of our compost bins for their final recycle. 
To finish off each box of potatoes has been covered with a couple of layers of fleece just for a little bit of frost protection. I think if some really severe cold weather is forecast I might have to move the boxes into the garage to give them a little extra protection from the cold. I’ll need to keep an eye on the forecast as until the end of February we can expect especially frosty nights which may damage our seed potatoes.

Our potatoes have started off our “sowing” record for 2012 which can be found here.


  1. I've got my potatoes chitting at the moment too. I'm not putting any in the allotment this year, just some earlies in containers in the garden.

  2. I won't receive my potatoes until March. Thank goodness!

  3. Hi Jo
    We had a good crop from containers last year so we'll be trying them again this year with the rest planted in the plot.

    Hi Robin
    March would be good for us too but if we leave ordering or buying until then only the poor quality potatoes are left. Can't help but expect one cold spell of weather in February.

  4. I'm surprised that you can't order and pay for your potatoes and have them shipped later.

    I ordered and paid for mine last month. They won't ship until March though.

  5. What a brilliant way to be able to buy your potatoes. I've never thought of asking our supplier if he would deliver in March. There's nowhere on the order form to ask for a delayed delivery. Might email them to see what they have to say.


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