Sunday, 18 December 2011

Vivaldi

Last year, we discovered Christmas potatoes, which you plant in bags in July, and give you new potatoes in time for Christmas.  That in itself was pretty cool, but the real discovery was the variety Vivaldi which is exclusively available from Thompson and Morgan.

Quite simply, Vivaldi are the best tasting boiled potatoes we've ever come across, and they're worth growing just for that.  They do also roast well, but IIRC the end result is not that different from Maris Piper, so no point wasting your few precious Vivaldi doing that!

This year I grew five seed potatoes in three special bags, and we had the first few last night, accompanying a delicious Spanish dish of duck legs with orange, olives and bacon.  You don't get a lot, but then, there are only two of us, and we don't have a way of keeping them for months, so we wouldn't want bags and bags of them.

So if you try this next year, you order them in the spring and they're delivered in July.  Remember to water the bags well, as they are thirsty, and feed weekly or your yield will be pathetic. 

And don't be tempted to plant tiny potatoes left over from ones you've grown earlier in the year.  They'll grow, but not make any fresh tubers. Worse, the original tuber will still be hard, but all the starch will have been used up by the plant, and when you cook it, you'll get what's known as a glassy potato.  Stays hard, looks translucent, tastes nasty.  One to avoid.

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