Thompson & Morgan

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First Early

First early potatoes are perfect if you want to grow small, new potatoes and should be planted from the end of February to late May. They'll be ready to harvest in about 10 weeks from the planting date. It's a good idea to 'chit' these varieties before planting - this produces long shoots from which the plants will grow. First early potatoes are ideal for growing in potato patio planters or containers.

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Potato 'Sharpe's Express' - Part of the Alan Romans Collection

Solanum tuberosum

First early

This garden classic was produced by Charles Sharpe of Sleaford. He was a major miller, merchant and seedsman in the town and may not have been personally responsible for his company's varieties. 'Express' has high dry matter, very good flavour and cooks well although boiling requires care. It was TV gardener, Percy Thrower's favourite. Yield and disease resistance are poor but some of Scotland's leading growers used to certify a small patch to keep the variety going for their own family use.

Useful links:

How to grow potatoes in the groundPotato Selector Guide
How to grow potatoes in bags     How to stop blight

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