Thanks to Sir Walter Raleigh bringing back tobacco and potatoes from South America in the 1500’s the Brits have been enjoying potatoes for centuries now. Energy packed and versatile, does anyone not like them? But there isn’t just one standard type of potato, there is loads to choose from, each cropping at specific times in the growing season and suited to certain types of cooking methods.
Waxy potatoes make ideal salad potatoes, they stay firm and are moist. Floury potatoes on the other hand are more fluffy and crumbly, making them perfect for mashing or roasting.
By planting different types of potato, you can ensure a regular supply of fresh potatoes for your kitchen. There are first early types that will give you an early crop of potatoes, planted at the end of March they will be ready for harvest in June. These are followed by second early, planted in mid April they can be harvested during the second half of August. Main crop potato types can be planted at the end of April or early May and can be harvested from late August, right through until October. Second cropping potatoes can be planted in August and will be ready for Christmas.
Here are just a few potato varieties to tantalize your taste buds.
There’ll be potatoes growing on the White Cliffs of Dover, tommorow, just you wait and see! You won’t have to wait long as they are an early cropper. The potatoes were introduced in 1942, and helped feed the country going during the war. Spitfire Pilots, Land Army Girls, Ack Ack gunners and the Dads Army, all enjoyed them, so get digging for victory! A fluffy texture makes them suitable for chips, boiling, mashing and roasting.
A perfectly round potato with a bright reddy pink skin and bright white interior flesh. They date back to 1920, the same year that women got to vote in a presidential election in the USA. A floury texture, so good for chips and mashed potatoes.
This potato is popular with gardeners with slug problems, as it has a good resistance. A good salad potato. Oval shaped with white skin and flesh. First grown in the 1930’s.
White potatoes that are very well suited to be grown in potato growing bags on decking and patios. They do well in full sun and produce baby new potatoes, that are great with salad. Another benefit off growing these potatoes is that they are very disease resistant.
Beauty of Bute
A heritage potato, with a long history of growing in the Bute area of Scotland. A good mashing potato with a floury texture. They grow to an average size and are a light yellow colour with pink eyes (indents). They have an above average resistance to potato blight.
A dramatic purple/violet colured skinned potato with a great taste. It first became available during the First World War. It’s extremely fluffy texture makes it a good potato for mashing or baked with the skins still on. It has a low resistance to blight.
First introduced near the end of Queen Victorias reign, it produces a great yield of potatoes, that are ideal for frying and roasting. Cream coloured and oval in shape.
Another regal second early potato dating from Queen Victoria’s reign. The Royal Kidney potatoes have a scrumptious flavour. A salad potato with a waxy texture. Yellow skin and flesh.
Pink Fur Apple
These long, gnarly potatoes have a distinct nuttiness to their flavour and with a waxy texture make a great salad potato. They can grow well in potato growing bags on the patio. This type of potato dates back to the Victorian era, and remains a popular quirky choice amongst gardeners.
These potatoes have been recently developed from wild potatoes from Peru. If you are a budding Jamie Oliver, then these could be the potatoes for you as they very popular with top chefs at leading restaurants. Their bright orange colour and fluffiness, mean that they make gorgeous gourmet chips.
A 21st century spud, that was launched in 2001. It has great disease resistance against Scab, Blight and Eelworm. It has nice foliage and the plants produce high yields.Good mash potato.
If you like baked potatoes, this is a good potato to grow. Keep the plants well spaced apart and make sure the soil is in good condition and you should plenty of large potatoes. Good drought resistance.
Vivaldi the versatile, will bring you some garden memories to your Christmas meals, as they are a potato that can continue to grow through the darker days and colder nights. They are a new potato type of potato but can be used for boiling, roasting, and mashing.
Good yields of late season potatoes that have a white skin and flesh, with a new potato taste. General use, and make good potato wedges to go with your leftover Christmas turkey!