Potato Seed Excessive Age?



I have a bulka of potato seed from last season's harvest. I intended to grow it six weeks ago, but continual wet weather has put planting back. The seed is well shot which isn't a concern for this variety, but what concerns me is that a fair proportion of the seed has small tubers initiating off the shoots. Does this mean the seed is too old to grow?

Thanks in advance.


Mixed Farmer
You probably aren’t in U.K but I have had this problem when we are ready to plant and it rains. When I was in England we sometimes got delayed and the crop would be very well sprouted before we could plant so much so that we would cut the bags down the centre to empty them but they still grew a crop even if planted as late as early June. Here in Kenya it doesn’t work like that once well sprouted they lose their vigor and grow very poorly and if you see the little potatoes growing from the sprouts I would be very worried about planting them.


Arable Farmer
West Suffolk
All I can say is, I wouldn’t! You’ll probably end up with less stems, less vigor and low tuber numbers.

After soil conditions I’d say seed condition is the next important thing.

A very expensive crop to grow!


Physiology-wise this seed is very old and will not produce much vegetative growth so has !limited yield potential. At some stage the current daughter tubers will mature, then lose dormancy and produce many crowded shoots and a crop of small tubers.

I fear the prospects for a good crop are limited.

Could a ‘Meat Tax’ be on the cards in the UK?

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Written by Richard Halleron from Agriland

The latest machination coming from the so-called ‘opinion formers’, who seem to have the ear of government advisors in London, is the introduction of a ‘Meat Tax’ at consumer level.

This approach, it is argued, would have the combined impact of reducing meat consumption levels (I can really see the health benefits coming through now), while also helping to reduce the overall carbon footprint of production agriculture.

What absolute drivel! In my opinion, none of this makes sense at any level. This is a scurrilous and unfounded attack on livestock farming in this part of the world.

Yet, it has to be taken seriously. I make this point because economists at Rothamsted Research have already crunched the numbers where the introduction of a ‘UK...