Time to start choosing which spud you like
Gardeners will now be looking at new spud varieties and growing techniques at garden centres.
Once you have made your choice of the wide variety of seed potatoes on offer, give them a head start by chitting them in egg boxes or on a seed tray lined with newspaper on a windowsill.
You can buy seed potatoes from many of the county’s garden centres or nurseries.
Place the potatoes on the tray or in the boxes, on a warm windowsill.
Leave them to sprout, which takes around six weeks and when the shoots are 2.5 to 4cm long, the potato tubers are chitted and ready for planting. This is vital for early potatoes and useful for maincrops.
When planting out, potatoes need an open, frost-free site with deep, fertile, moisture-retentive soil. The best time for planting is late March and April.
Before planting, supplement with a general fertiliser, such as Growmore or blood, fish and bone, applied to the soil surface or spread along the sides of the drill.
Ibbett Mosely has been providing independent professional advice to local residents for more than 110 years • Offices in London, Sevenoaks, Otford, Borough Green, Westerham and West Malling.
Potatoes chitting in egg boxes