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Queensland potatoes

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Diana starts with ...
Hi all,
It's almost potato planting season (as soon as it stops raining). I have the same problem every year- it is hard to find anywhere selling a range of seed potatoes in March or April. Taspotatoes and Goodman seeds have lots but are not ready for months yet, when it is not ideal to plant here.

I like Nicola and Dutch cream, I have ordered some from Green Harvest. I am planning to take my chances with some other varieties from Northey St organic market.

As far as I can tell, Green Harvest is the only supplier of certified seed potatoes locally (apart from the produce shop near me which has an unnamed variety sometimes). Does anyone know any different?

Thanks.
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Brisbane
14th March 2012 10:26pm
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amanda says...
Diana - it's always good to "nag" your local suppliers..they are in the "game" to make money after all...? And if the smaller suppliers can supply a niche that the big suppliers can't/won't...they will go for it :)

We have had the same problem here...most of WA is is held to ransom over the Perth planting times etc ...can u imagine that??? From Albany in the South - way up to Kununurra in the north....an entire North/South span of Aust, of 1000's of kms and climate zones...? (and quarantine reg's prohibit any spud imports except from Tassie...so u have lots of competition for their seed spuds!?)

But - our local Bunnings and rural suppliers are now getting in seed potatoe much earlier...because we are all whinging basically!? :D

I have a great relationship with my Bunnings guy - who is the go-between for the bulk nursery supplier and our Bunnos store...he actually works for the supplier -and only on Wed and Thurs when the stock comes in...
I wonder if it's the same for other Bunno's stores..?

Not to brag or anything at all...it just makes sense for a gardener? He actually got the supplier to grow heirloom tomatoe seedlings for us, in Geraldton, over winter...when they are not growing them for Perth....it was a BIG win for us!

(but yes - you can have a go with the organic ones...I have - the only one that I have had problems with so far has been Royal Blue...From the F&V shop I have grown many types, myself..?)


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amanda19
Geraldton, 400km North of Perth
14th March 2012 11:19pm
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Diana says...
Thanks Amanda, good idea.

Royal Blue is one of the market varieties that I am trying to chit at the moment- I'll see how they go!

The potatoes I got from Green Harvest are actually Goodman Seeds tubers, so I don't know how that works (when did they get them?).

Diana.
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Brisbane
17th March 2012 4:28pm
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snottiegobble says...
Diana, Royal Blues are delicious spuds, but very low in harvest production compared to some other potato varieties.
Surely where you are you can source Desiree, Pontiac or Kennebec ??
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snottiegobble
Bunno &amp; Busso ( smack in the middle)
17th March 2012 10:57pm
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Diana says...
Hi Snottiegobble,

Thanks for the tip. Potatoes in general have low production in the subtropics (like berries- yummy, but we have to accept that we will get fewer than in Tasmania). I am still very keen to grow them because I think the potato is one of those vegies that tastes very obviously much better if home grown. I was thinking that it is due to varieties, as I also find farmers market nicolas and pink-eyes absolutely delicious, compared to supermarket potatoes that taste like water.

It is easy to find desiree and pontiac in the fruit shop or supermarket. Do you find that home grown desirees taste better than shop-bought desirees?
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Diana
Brisbane
19th March 2012 3:29pm
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trikus says...
Some tropical tubers that rival spuds in taste . Grow well in the tropics .
Tannia , Yautia , Malanaga and Coco Yam are some common names for edible offset tubers of Xanthosoma .
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trikus
tattered tropics
19th March 2012 11:03pm
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Mike says...
trikus I got given an unusual tuber that I planted and I suspect it is a Xanthosoma.Is it the off-set tubers that make them different from taro.This plant has arrow head leaves that are all pale green with a grey tinge.
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Cairns
19th March 2012 11:26pm
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trikus says...
Yes Mike , faster to produce than taro , and favoured by some people for better flavour . Much confusion re. names as expert in Brazil has advised what was though of as Xanthosoam sagittifolia is most likely X robustum . If you google enough can even find refrence to robustum being toxic !
This is not so , I have been eating tubers of these for many years .
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trikus
tattered tropics
20th March 2012 8:31am
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Speedy says...
I love cocoyams.
boil til soft ( test with fork), then slip the skins off under water with your hands.
then cook for a short time in coconut milk/cream and consume hot or allow to cool, sweetened as a desert or just with a bit of salt as a starch complement to main meal as you'd use potato.
yum.

some taro varieties (eddoes) are grown for the small cormels that grow around the main corm simmilar to how cocoyams do.
they generally mature earlier than other taro vars. and are ok to grow in vege gardens, upland taro culture rather than wet taro culture.
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Speedy
Nthn Vic.
20th March 2012 11:08am
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snottiegobble says...
Diana, yes I think cold storage must affect their taste, & and anyway its always more exciting to dig your own isnt it? Must admit though after growing sweet potatoes for the first time & having such 'enormous' success with huge tubers still retaining excellent taste I am more inclined towards growing them, certainly in the hot months anyway!
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snottiegobble
Bunno &amp; Busso ( smack in the middle)
20th March 2012 2:14pm
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Mike says...
SG now that is a whopper.A beauregard by the looks.Is that plant near your left shoulder/bicep, beside the lemon grass a bilimbi or perhaps a star gooseberry?
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Cairns
20th March 2012 5:13pm
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amanda says...
Awesome SG!! I am going to have see if I can top that now!! (looks like a curry leaf tree, by your bicep there..?)
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amanda19
Geraldton. 400km north of Perth
20th March 2012 8:10pm
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snottiegobble says...
Shhhhh, It is a curry tree & I just had my first papaya of that tree in the background, very small, but suprisingly quite tasty.Do9nt know if the rest will ripen so might have to google " unripe pawpaw salad" soon.
Mike, the flesh is creamy white, & made into chips powdered with turmeric, smokey paprica,& cumin powder then rolled in organic coconut oil, cooked on a tray at 180c spells utter Magic!
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snottiegobble
Bunno &amp; Busso ( smack in the middle)
20th March 2012 9:13pm
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Mike says...
The curry tree has form like a couple of other species.I prefer cooked paw paw when a bit of colour sweetens it and it is just dished up like other roasted vegies.It is supposed to be very good for you and maybe the papain helps digestion.Ripe ones can tenderise meat and the seeds were used in WW2 as a pepper substitute.White fleshed is better for paw paw salad.
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Cairns
20th March 2012 9:21pm
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Diana says...
Thanks- productive sweet potato patch Snottiegobble.

I have three varieties of sweet potatoes too. They are reliable without any attention (except for cutting them back when they take over). I have celery stem taro which is called cocoyam in the catalogue, but this is Colocasia esculenta. I have not seen the different species grown for tubers called cocoyam for sale anywhere.

I have a few other tropical tubers such as cassava, arrowroot and wing yams. These are all nice, but with most of these tubers except sweet potatoes they tend to go dark and oxidised as soon as they are cut, and in the case of the yam it exudes slime when cut.

I still like potatoes- they don't oxidise and there are things you can only really make with potatoes.
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21st March 2012 12:13am
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snottiegobble says...
Diana, I guess its a case of "the grass is always greener" cos we love the tropical fruits & vegies, but cant really grow them & visa versa. However it is increasingly apparent that many tropical botanicals may have the answer to many ailments including cancers! We as humans are slowly reaching the stage where we eat not just to satisfy our appetite, but to guarantee us a reasonable lifespan! It seems that you have all that in your backyard so go for it!
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snottiegobble
Bunno &amp; Busso ( smack in the middle)
21st March 2012 1:04am
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Mike says...
I have identified 2 mystery edible elephant ears in my yard.Alocasia odora with edible leaf stalks (bac ha in vietnamese) was given to me years ago and I found a stray one growing.Xanthosoma was given to me as an unusual taro.With my chicken last night I tried a selection of 5 sweet potato types and lesser yam (D.esculenta). The yam was soft and tasty.The purple skinned purple fleshed sweet potato was by far the best and purple skinned white fleshed the plainest.Yellow fleshed sweet potatoes are also very good but I didn't have any to compare.
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Mike25
Cairns
16th April 2012 6:24pm
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JUJUBE FOR SALE IN MELBOURNE says...
Hi Mike,
You remind me to harvest my sweet potatos too. I hope I will get some but not sure if they are not ready because the vines are still growing and also the soil is so dry.

I could see my lesser yam rhizome on the surface of the soil but I think I will wait for the vine to turn yellow first.

I use bac ha stalk for stir fry and sweet and sour soup but the preparation takes time because apart from peeling, wash with salt is another thing before it can be cooked.
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JUJUBE FOR SALE
 
16th April 2012 8:27pm
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Mike says...
Well howdy Lucy, lesser yams are supposed to take 9 -12 months and sweet potatoes 4 -8 months.The bac ha has been 'dead' for 4 years and then the pepper took over the spot,but 2 little ones popped up.
It is hard to believe Townsville just 360km down the road is dry.Today was the 6th straight day (and night) of wind and rain with not one blue patch of sky.
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Mike25
Cairns
16th April 2012 8:45pm
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JUJUBE FOR SALE IN MELBOURNE says...
Lucky you Mike. Not a drop of rain for the last 3 weeks on my end and it will stay that way for a while.
Is your lesser yam purple inside?. I think mine is white inside. I was looking for the purple one but could not find any.
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JUJUBE FOR SALE
 
16th April 2012 9:18pm
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JUJUBE FOR SALE IN MELBOURNE says...
Lucky you Mike. Not a drop of rain for the last 3 weeks on my end and it will stay that way for a while.
Is your lesser yam purple inside?. I think mine is white inside. I was looking for the purple one but could not find any.
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JUJUBE FOR SALE
 
16th April 2012 9:18pm
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Mike says...
Lucy it was white inside and I think all lesser yams (D.esculenta) are.The water yam (D.alata) is purple inside and I have not tasted those yet.Water yams are rounder with rougher skin and lesser yams are kinda egg shaped.
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Mike25
Cairns
16th April 2012 9:26pm
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Ian Doc says...
I've been led to believe that Mitre 0 mega Store at Beenleigh will be selling some seed potatoes around March. I do know that Bunnings sell them too but I couldn't pick a time when they have theirs on display.
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Ian Doc
Logan
22nd November 2018 8:28pm
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