Late Season Planting for Autumn or Christmas Potato Harvest

Our range of late season varieties

Late season varieties for summer planting to give an autumn harvest for Christmas

These varieties are hand picked for high disease resistance as well as a range of looks and cooking styles. We have lots of advice

Late season Varieties 2024

We are delighted to be bringing  you a range of late season potatoes again for you. We strongly advise that these are planted by the end of July, however we know of success when planted in August and into September. No need to chit, although you could for a few weeks if you wanted. Yields will not be as large as there is not as much heat and light in the late summer and autumn. For more information on late-season planting  see here. Remember our prices include delivery. We will be dispatching twice a week over the summer. This range has sold out in previous years.

What is late Season planting? Can I grow my own potatoes for Christmas?

Late Season Planting was an area that we first ventured into in 2020 and what a success it was.  We did not know what to expect and we sold out! For the last few years we again kept some potatoes back in cold storage ensuring the seed potatoes are in top condition for our customers and we have sold out each year. In 2022 we introduced patio packs – a great way to try several varieties in a small scale and are delighted to be selling this again.

For 2024, we kept more stock back for this year and once again, we picked some great blight-resistant varieties for you with a range of cooking types.

 We suggest that mid August is the latest to be planting and really would advise that the end of July is better for the majority of our customers to give enough heat and light to give a good harvest.  However we had some customers planting in early September in 2023 and this is possible if you are further south, or have a good greenhouse/polytunnel. All our late season varieties are included in our bulk deal buy 5 or more nets or grow bags and get £1 off each net (not the variety packs).

We are on a learning curve with our customers and would appreciate any feedback you may have. 

Late Season Planting. Christmas Dinner 2024 - lets start planning!

Late Season Planting. Seed Potatoes for Christmas Harvest

The delight of homegrown, tender new potatoes on Christmas Day is closer than you may think and possible with a little know how.

It’s useful to know what makes a winter seed potato. The simple answer is that they have been in cold storage all spring to delay their growth and taken out from June so that they are ready to start their plant-to-harvest cycle. The timings are usually given for spring planting and it must be remembered that there is not as much heat or light in the autumn and so plants will take longer and the yields may be less. A potato planted in the summer can produce your ‘roasties’ and new baby potatoes for Christmas Day! Depending on where you are, we would say mid-August would be the latest you could plant, however, we envisage most customers will plant by the end of July. But of course, rules are made to be broken - we had customers planting in early September in 2023 with great results . This could be done in a greenhouse or polutunnel. Your feedback on growing late potatoes is most welcome as we are on a learning curve with our customers.

It’s also useful to know that potatoes harvested in summer require a period of dormancy before they can be used as seed potatoes, so replanting any harvested straight away won’t work.  Potatoes planted in late summer do not need to be chitted as the ground is warm enough to start growth, however you could chit them for a week or two if desired. 

Potatoes will be dispatched twice a week during the summer.

Last year, many journalists and bloggers were interested in this venture with extremely positive feedback. Please see our news page for further details.

How to grow potatoes indoors for Christmas harvests

  • Use a container at least 30cm (1ft) deep and wide, with drainage holes in the base. Our Grow bags are ideal
  • Add a layer of potting compost or garden soil mixed with garden compost or well-rotted manure. A layer 10cm (4in) thick is sufficient for 30cm (1ft) deep pots, but larger containers can be half-filled.
  • Plant one to three tubers per pot, each with about 30cm (1ft) of space, and cover with 15cm (6in) of compost or soil.
  • As the foliage develops, earth up the potatoes with further compost or soil until the container is full to within 5cm (2in) of the top. Leave a lip to aid watering.
  • Keep well-watered and feed with a general-purpose liquid fertiliser.
  • Ensure the greenhouse remains frost-free as the season progresses, as potato foliage would be damaged by frost.
  • The foliage will yellow and die down in late autumn and can then be removed and composted.
  • Tubers can be left in their pots in compost (kept fairly dry) until needed at Christmas.

How to grow potatoes outdoors for Christmas harvests

  • Follow general instructions for growing potatoes, including planting them in a trench and earthing them up as they begin to grow.
  • Take measures to protect against potato blight and slugs.
  • Once foliage dies down in September or October, remove and compost it.
  • On light soils in a sheltered garden, piling some earth up over the row where you know the potatoes are and covering it with straw to insulate tubers may be sufficient protection to store them in the ground until Christmas.
  • In cold areas, or where soils are wet and heavy, it is better to lift tubers by the end of October and re-bury them in coarse sand or soil in a frost-free place (such as a garden shed) until you need them.
  • Lifting and storing potatoes in the fridge, or in bags in a cool shed, is possible but will cause the skins to harden and the desirable, delicate ‘new-potato’ flavour and texture will be lost.

Problems

We'd be lying if we said that growing potatoes this late in the season is without problems. Although even a beginner can have tremendous results, this isn't guaranteed. There is much less light and heat in the autumn months and so everything will take longer than in the spring and summer.  We're here to help and are always available to answer questions.

  • Slugs and snails can damage foliage, stems and tubers underground
  • Potatoes grown outside in summer and autumn are especially prone to potato blight. Those in containers indoors are not usually at risk
  • Keep an eye on the weather forecasts as early frosts will blacken foliage and weaken plants; fleece protection may be needed for outdoor crops.

So what are YOU having with your potatoes this year? Side dish of turkey, ham or nut roast? Or perhaps more potatoes?!

Let the potatoes take centre stage.
🎄🎅🎄🎅🎄🎅🎄🎅

Potato House. Home of Quality Seed Potatoes.

Grown and dispatched directly from our farm*

*Each year, a few varieties are sourced from other local growers to complete our range. This is noted on a tab on the variety page.



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