Plant spuds now, so you can eat with Christmas dinner

John Shannon. INLT 13-802-CON
John Shannon. INLT 13-802-CON

As a part-time vegetarian, my favourite veg is the potato.

The humble spud, however you cook it, is lovely and even better when you havegrown your own.

You can now purchase seed potatoes to plant in your garden now and harvest at Christmas. There are three varieties to choose from: Duke of York, Pentland Javelin” and Arran Pilot.

The most common cultivation method at this time is planting into the garden, well prepared with the addition of well rotted manure or compost and a base dressing of Growmore.

Plant the seed 20cm deep and 30cm apart in a row with 40cm between each row. Harvesting should be about 12 weeks.

The second method is to place three tubers into a very large pot or container, at least 60cm deep and across, with good drainage. Put about 10cm of vegetable compost in, place in three tubers and cover with compost.

As the potatoes grow, keep topping up with compost until the container is full. Before the first frosts, move into a glass house or conservatory or a glass porch to protect the foliage from frost and cold wind.

No heat is required moving the container inside will allow the potatoes to keep growing and the crop will increase. Once the tops have died back the crop can be harvested and stored in a cool dark place or simple remove the tops and leave the potatoes in the container and harvest when required.