Posted: 09/02/2013 at 22:31
1st earlies are ready to harvest after 10 weeks. 2nd earlies are ready to harvest after 13 weeks and main crop after 15 to 20 wks although - I've said on a previous post 1st and 2nd earlies are ready later (I'm in the North and found cropping is later).They can't be planted out until the last forcasted frost though.
You can purchase your seed spuds now and start chitting at home. If you wait to purchase, the spuds in the shops will start chitting under the hot lights in the shop anyway and you'll be buying seed spuds with long spindly shoots which you don't want.
Chitting - just pop them in an egg box the right way up, I put mine out of direct sunlight so they don't go spindly. Wait until the last forcast frost and plant 5 - 6 spuds in each bag.
There are loads of varieties, try to choose those which have some resistance to blight. 1st and 2nd earlies are less susceptible as they crop earlier than main-crop.
I've got Pentland Javlin and Winston as 1st earlies. Estima and Wilja as 2nd earlies and Desire as a main crop. Also Red Duke of York think it's a 2nd early.