Ordering Seed Potatoes for 2022

Last year I went a bit OTT with my potatoes. We did too well really. I gave away the harvested surplus so no harm done. This year I’m being a bit more restrained, but not a lot.

It’s always difficult ordering seeds and seed potatoes. So many wonderful varieties to choose from. Honestly, I found about 50 types I fancied trying. Like a child in a sweet shop.. I’d like them all! There’s an article on choosing seed potatoes here to help you along with articles on what varieties are best for which culinary use (best for mash, best for chips etc.) See How to Grow Potatoes

My actual seed potato selection for 2022

Potatoes Chitting

Potatoes Chitting in seed trays in the potting shed. from 2021 I use the labels from the nets in the seed trays to avoid mix-ups at planting time.

Casablanca (1st Early)

Casablanca is a productive, multi-purpose, recently developed (2009) variety. It’s new to me so I’m hoping it lives up to its listings. Normally my 1st early banker is Arran Pilot. It’s been around for 90 years. Not hugely productive, but over the years Arran Pilot has proven reliable for me. Casablanca is supposed to give twice the yield, so hopeful this is a good move.

Colleen (1st Early)

Colleen is another modern variety, not even 30 yet. A pal reckoned this was a lovely spud which is why it’s on my list. Supposedly yield is near to that of Casablanca so it will probably come down flavour which makes next year’s list.

Charlotte (2nd Early)

Charlotte is the salad potato. Waxy texture as you’d expect with great flavour. One of my ‘bankers’ Reliable enough to bank on. Can be harvested small but the last plants left produce some very large tubers.

Orla (Early or Main?)

Orla is a strange one. Some describe it as a first early, others as an early main. I like that you can harvest as an early or just leave it to bulk up until blight starts and then harvest. It’s a great all-rounder – mashes and chips.

Kifli (Early Main)

Kifli is a member of the Sarpo family which gives great blight resistance. It’s is a lovely, waxy salad potato with a similar flavour to Charlotte. Kifli is an early maincrop and can be on the table as early as August. My plan is that the Kifli will follow on the Charlotte and hopefully store until and beyond Christmas 2022.

Setanta (Main)

Setanta is a good all-rounder and quite blight resistant. Whether it is as blight resistant as Sarpo will depend on what strains are around next year. Even potato blight has its variants! I’ll try growing a kilo and see how they do against Axona.

Scapa (Main)

Scapa is a new to me variety, a cross between Mayan Twilight and Mayan Gold. Reputed to be great for boiling, baking and mashing with a deep yellow flesh. Near top for scab resistance which is a problem here it also has reasonable blight resistance.

I read on Orkney.com that it was developed by James Thorburn in South Ronaldsay, one of the Orkney Islands. The main force behind breeding Scapa was flavour so I’m really looking forward to seeing how we do with this.

Sarpo Axona (Main)

We did really well with Sarpo Axona this year and generally we prefer the flavour / texture to that of Sarpo Mira. It stores well too so I’m confident we will be eating our Axona until next year’s earlies are available.

Sarpo Mira (Late Main)

Harvesting Sarpo Mira Potatoes

Harvesting Sarpo Mira Potatoes

Sarpo Mira is the bruiser of the family. Mira laughs at blight most years whilst it’s swamping the weeds. It’s very, I mean very, productive and often produces exceptionally large tubers. That can be a problem though. If you let them carry on too long or don’t give them enough water in a dry spell which is followed by rain they have a tendency to hollow heart.

I’ve been growing Sarpo Mira for 16 years now and it never fails to produce a crop, even in a bad blight year.

The flavour is good but they’ve a very dense flesh which doesn’t fit to everyone’s taste. Fantastic for oven dishes like leek and potato pie or Boulangère as, being firm, they hold their shape well when cooked. I love them mashed as well – I really don’t like watery mashed potatoes and the dense texture of Mira is perfect.

Posted in Allotment Garden Diary
24 comments on “Ordering Seed Potatoes for 2022
  1. John Harrison says:

    They’re genuinely nice people, too.

    • Mick Thomas says:

      High John, happy new year. Picked my new seed potatoes up on Christmas eve.Only grow the reliable croppers. First early, Maris Bard. Second early Maris Peer. They work a treat in Norfolk soil. Expected a price increase and got one. I usually get 25 kg of each.I checked the price before I went to collect them and got told same price as last year £23.40 a bag.Same as last year or so I though until I got them home and realized they are now 20 kg bags.That’s a 20% rise or there about’s. Afraid i’m going to have to charge the pensioners in the village this year. That will go down very well i’m sure. Take care Mick.

    • Barry spedding says:

      happy new year John I have gone for Sarpo Mira lates its toss up between Belle de Fontenay or Charlotte for seconds
      (what say you)
      have a great 2022

      • John Harrison says:

        Tricky one – better yields and confirmation with Charlotte but Belle de Fontenay has better flavour if left to mature (it’s an early maincrop rather than a second early like Charlotte)

  2. David Gray says:

    I’ve just had an email from my supplier saying mine are on their way. Is this not impossibly too early?

  3. Astrid Morgan says:

    Can NEVER have too much information on potato varieties, especially for cooking ☺️☺️

  4. David Grant says:

    Hello John,
    My wife has a small traditional fruit and vegetable shop in Cupar Fife. We have two local potato suppliers and in 2013 one of then supplied her with Casablanca. I have to say the taste was incredible and we were looking forward to receiving them again in 2014… but the whole field was hit by blight and what could be salvaged fed to the cattle. So, take care!
    Might as well add that from 2015 that grower switched to Saphire (a white potato as opposed to Sapphire with two “p’s” which is purple). They were equally delicious and totally “bombproof” in that you could boil them for an hour without going to mush.
    Hope you find this helpful.
    Dave Grant

  5. pip says:

    Tried a potato from Aldi called “Elgar”. Found it very tasty but can’t find any seed pots with this name. P S. I have no connection with Aldi.

    • John Harrison says:

      not come across that myself – believe it’s popular in Canada. So many different varieties!

      • Brooke McArthur says:

        Hi John,

        Yes we do have them in Canada (Pinehaven Farm in Millbrook, Ontario grows them) but I am having such a hard time finding anything on the Elgar potato (ie. dry matter, what they’re good for- roast, mash etc). Wondering if you have any resources?

        Thanks! Brooke

    • Marie Griffiths says:

      I also like the Elgar potatoes very much. Hopefully they’ll stock them again this year and I’ll make a mote of the grower.

  6. Peter Bains says:

    Hi John Happy New year.
    My main problem is finding the right potato that is slug resistant.
    I have a selection that I grow which are Aron Pilot & Pentland & Javelin 2nd early`s Kestrel & Charlotte, Mains Pentland & Dell or squire & Sante.
    There are so many late types that I would like to try but it`s a big gamble for the amount of time and cost involved.

  7. Felix O'Hagan says:

    I live in the Glasgow area and our season is later because of the weather, we don’t normally plant until end of March if ordered now will the seeds be ok until then? thinking about chitting, rats, etc.

  8. Eva says:

    Love your article and need to get my seed potatoes set soon in the tunnel. I am in Ireland and think a UK site is not now available for orders, so advice as to where I can order in Ireland would be really welcomed. Eva

  9. Bernard Tyson says:

    If orders arrive early in the year , I store them in my dark garage ,the coolest place I have . Often they produces blanched thin shoots almost immediately , well before my planting date . Does this weaken the seed potato and should I grub off these shoots before putting to chit on the window cill ?

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