Tuesday, 27 June 2017

First Potatoes Lifted

After a rather mediocre Sunday weatherwise Monday was a lovely summer's day with the temperature making it up to a pleasant 20.6C (69.1°F) it felt pleasantly warm in the afternoon sunshine.

We've emptied out a few potato bags from tubers started off in the greenhouse but to be honest I'm not very good with potato bags and we rely entirely on the potatoes grown on the allotment for our main supply. I decided it was time to try lifting a couple of roots of our first early potatoes "Casablanca" and see how they'd performed. 
Key Dates for Early Potatoes - "Casablanca"
They've had what I would consider to be a very poor growing season. A few unseasonably cold nights in mid May resulted in the foliage being frosted at which stage they didn't look too happy at all.
Casablanca Potatoes 10 May 2017
The plants recovered well but the second weather obstacle this year has been the lack of rain. We've had more than enough watering to do on the plot trying to keep seeds and seedlings watered so all our potatoes have gone unwatered.
I've highlighted the rainfall figures in the table above. I've added up the totals to save you a problem. In a normal season over the 3 month growing period our potatoes could expect 139.9mm (5.5in) of rainfall but this year that's amounted to less than half the amount at 65.8mm or 2.6in.

Although the plants looked healthy enough I wasn't expecting a large crop when I lifted the first root.
I was pleasantly surprised as there was a decent crop of potatoes considering the poor growing season they'd had. The potatoes were very clean with no pest damage or skin problems at all. At cooking time all they needed was a good wash.
They are pictured with the rest of Monday's harvest above.

When cooked the potatoes tasted great but they did boil into the water a little bit but I'm putting that down to the very dry growing conditions.


  1. havent lifted my potatoes yet but its been so dry im not expecting a great crop of PFA im ilke you have never had great success with potato bags maybe its the watering

    1. I'm going to plant some sweet potatoes in bags and keep them in the greenhouse. Ever the optimist!

    2. i'll watch with interest we like sweet potatoes but didnt know you could grow them in this country

    3. I'm not sure you can grow them in this country either David. I'll post about how they progress.

  2. At least spuds are resilient.

    1. After Wednesday's rain they should be alright for water. Notice we've now had a blightwatch notification!!

  3. Beautiful harvest of potatoes! They look so good!


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