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July 20, 2010 / Malcolm Dalebö

Growing Second Crop Potatoes

  • At one time allotment gardeners just grew their first and second early potatoes and then a maincrop, which in the old days was expected to last the family through until the next late spring, when the first earlies would be ready again.
  • A few eccentrics grew potatoes over the Christmas period, but few succeeded due to the vagaries of the British weather.
  • One variety of potato is altering the way we think about growing potatoes, and that is the ‘Carlingford’, second crop potato. 
  • The most popular and widely grown ‘second cropper’, Carlingford performs reliably from late plantings giving good yields of round, smooth-skinned creamy-white fleshed tubers. These boil beautifully bringing that true ‘new potato’ taste to your meals.
  • Late season (second crop) potatoes are grown from tubers which have been stored at a precise low temperature to keep them dormant until they are sent to you in July/early August. 
  • Plant them straight away (no need to ‘chit’ first) and they will grow away rapidly in the warm summer soil.
  • As you crop your early potatoes, you can simply plant these tubers in the same place and you’ll be getting a second crop possibly from late August, they’ll grow away rapidly in the warm summer soil.
  • Your first potatoes can be dug from late October, but remember to leave some in the ground undisturbed, so you can enjoy that mouth-watering, just harvested, ‘new potato’ taste on Christmas Day.
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