A few days ago we discovered that this year the feed store was selling seed potatoes. They had about fifteen types to choose from, and all were supposedly suited to growing well in this area. I don’t know how their price compares to seed potatoes in other areas, but this was the only local source and the price seemed reasonable… seventy-nine cents a pound for any of the potato types. We bought twenty pounds of russets. I read somewhere that you can expect a crop of approximately ten pounds of potatoes for every pound of seed potatoes planted… so will we end up with around two hundred pounds of potatoes to dig? Probably not… but it will be fun to find out.
This is the first time we have bought seed potatoes, although we have grown potatoes for the last two years. Previously we have always just saved and planted potatoes that had developed eyes… and yes, I do know that planting potatoes from the grocery store isn’t supposed to be a good thing to do, although it has worked great for us. Both years we ended up with unexpectedly huge crops. Our only reason for buying seed potatoes this year was because we haven’t found any potatoes with eyes.
I also have a few small potatoes that I saved from last year’s crop, and they actually have more eyes than the seed potatoes we bought. We will plant them in a different area so we can see how the two yields compare. The potatoes I saved were from russet potatoes that were long, dark and rough… the seed potatoes we bought look more rounded, with skins that look smooth.
The man at the feed store said that the seed potatoes should be planted within the next couple of weeks, so we will probably plant them this weekend. For various reasons beyond our control we have always planted potatoes much later than we should have, so it will be interesting to see if an earlier planting will yield an even bigger crop.
I suppose we should cut at least some of the larger potatoes into pieces… and somehow in the next couple of days we’ve got to come up with new planting areas.
And that will almost certainly involve digging up lots of big rocks!