Vegmonkey and the Mrs.

Vegetable growing in a very small space in Cheltenham

Potato Day @ Dundry Nurseries, Cheltenham January 19, 2008

I treated myself today.

After going to pick up the Mrs.’ new car this morning, she drove home and i snook off to the garden centre.  It is close to where i live which is handy, but the main purpose was to buy some seed potatoes. I’ve heard of potato days in the past but have never been to one. Bizzarely, i really enjoyed myself (as much as is possible at seeing 150 varieties of seed potato!).  It was possible to buy any of the varieties loose, in 3kg bags or 25kg bags. This is great for me as i don’t have to pay the high postage costs commanded when buying online, and have the exact variety i wanted. I bought a 3kg bag for £4.25, which will give me enough seed pot’s to plant, plus do the work veg patch and give a few away to friends so they can be ‘amazed and astounded!’ Whoever heard of a potato as a present!

I chose ‘Ulster Sceptre,’ a first early potato which can be chitted now, planted mid March and harvested early to mid-June. It is known as an ‘early, earlie’ potato which will be ready 10 weeks after planting, and was first bred in 1964.  When i harvest them, the leeks can go straight into the space, and the ground use is maximised. I also bought 2 large black potato buckets which will take 3 tubers each and produce about 6kg of potatoes per bucket, Ulster Sceptre having a particularly high yield. Sadly i will only be able to grow first earlies due to the size of the garden, but we are going to have plenty.

It does amaze me though, how many people appear at an event like a potato day, and how much of a massive operation it is. A very patriotic British occasion. There were also some ‘show quality’ veggies there, to which i can only aspire. I’ll let the pics to the talking!




6 Responses to “Potato Day @ Dundry Nurseries, Cheltenham”

  1. SNAP!! We just got back from it about an hour ago and had a really fab time, it does seem bizzare that we get excited about potatoes!! We ended up buying 30 earlies (3 dif varieties) 20 maincrops (3 dif varieties too) I think I have enough to supply our entire allotment site!

  2. Meg Says:

    Wow! I’ve never heard of anyplace in the US having a potato day, but I wish they did. What a great resource. I hope they do well for you.

  3. Curtis Says:

    Hmm potato day! Sounds like a mash of potato pickers, picking up their potatoes.

    This year I am growing potatoes, it was kinda late last year since I was building raised beds instead of having a garden in the ground.

  4. Paul Says:

    lol We were there too, can’t seem myself in any of your pics tho… 😉

    Was great fun, we got a selection of varieties so we can do a bit of a taste test this year to see what we like best.

    At least we now have an allotment to plant them on! 🙂

  5. VP Says:

    I wish I’d known about this – much closer than the one at Ryton I’m thinking of going to next week. Looks like you all had a great time.

    It’s not such a bad thing just growing earlies – a lot of my fellow allotmenteers in Chippenham do just that to beat the dreaded blight, in spite of having oodles of space and the fact there’s some blight resistant varieties around.

  6. Sinta Says:

    Well, that looks like great fun! I wonder if we have anything like it here in Yorkshire. Most likely, I have yet to discover it! I’ve got my maincrop Kestrel potatoes waiting in the shed for planting day, but next year I might try your Ulster Sceptre. I too have to think of maximising the space and usage. I will definitely check in often to see your progress in this potatoes – leek transition.

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