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Old August 9, 2015   #1
Tropicalgrower
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Default What exactly is a 'Fingerling" potato,and which tastes best?

I apologize.I don't know much bout Taters.

Some of you may have noticed that I reside in SE Asia..actually the Philippines.I cannot remember the last time I had a potato that actually had good potato flavor,even when we still lived in Oregon.I have only seen 2 varieties here locally.Both were potatoes,but not much for flavor..

I could really use some advice on what varieties might be a good choice to try based on flavor.I'm not stuck on fingerlings either,although I would enjoy growing a variety or 2.

Part of the problem is,for me at least,sourcing seed potatoes at the right time.US sources don't ship before late Oct.I have all my garden treasures sent to my Sis in Oregon.She then send them on to me,but she isn't always able to send us a box,as she works 6 days a week,and has a disabled husband at home.A shipment from home normally take 6-8 weeks.I don't doubt that seed potatoes might survive a trip of that duration,but the trick is to find some in the first place.I don't think they have any of those Whole Foods markets (or similar) locally.Last time we were there,they had a Farmers Market like once a week,but I don't remember there being much variety there.Do sellers at Farmers Markets normally provide varietal name when they sell their produce?That might be an option,as the Sis will be sending a box in Sept sometime...

I found the site for Ronningers (which is now potatogarden.com) and I looked at The Potato Lady as well,but no one ships before Mid Oct..

Woops.Kinda got sidetracked.

I just meant to ask what a Fingerling potato is,and what some good tasting (old time potato taste) varieties are that I might look out for..or have the Sis look out for?

Thanks.

Trop

Last edited by Tropicalgrower; August 9, 2015 at 03:37 AM.
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Old August 9, 2015   #2
swardson
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I have grown russian banana fingerling for 3 or 4 years now and I can't go back to any other potato. The texture is firm, the taste is waxy and mellow. I got lazy this year and got my seeds from Trader Joes this year. Farmers markets might start to get potatoes now so they should have them.

Wouldn't Mid October be best for you? You want to wait until the heat is gone. Potatoes that grow in temperatures greater than 25 C are not going to give you as large a crop before dying back.
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Old August 9, 2015   #3
Nematode
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Maybe try true potato seed from TomWagner.
Just stole a few from a young plant and ther were very good.


http://tatermaterseeds.com/shop/inde...f16386a0a724fb
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Old August 9, 2015   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swardson View Post
I have grown russian banana fingerling for 3 or 4 years now and I can't go back to any other potato. The texture is firm, the taste is waxy and mellow. I got lazy this year and got my seeds from Trader Joes this year. Farmers markets might start to get potatoes now so they should have them.

Wouldn't Mid October be best for you? You want to wait until the heat is gone. Potatoes that grow in temperatures greater than 25 C are not going to give you as large a crop before dying back.

swardson:
Thanks for the recommendation of the Russian Banana.I've seen that one mentioned more than once.You are quite right about waiting till mid Oct too.My Sis won't ship till sometime in Sept.By the time it sails across the pond,it will be mid to late Oct.

I found a website for one of the local (to her) Farmers Market.Maybe I can contact them to get some info on any market providers of potatoes.I don't know if there are any specialty markets like Whole Foods in her area.there wasn't when I left,but that was "several" years ago.

Thanks for the help,much appreciated.

Trop
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Old August 9, 2015   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nematode View Post
Maybe try true potato seed from TomWagner.
Just stole a few from a young plant and ther were very good.


http://tatermaterseeds.com/shop/inde...f16386a0a724fb

I would have to read up on that a little...I don't know anything about TPS...well,I don't know much.

Can anyone maybe give me a short definition of a fingerling?

Is the term fingerling used to describe any elongated potato?I was in one of the supermarkets before we moved here,and saw some small elongated potatoes.They were all on the smallish size (maybe the size of a thumb) and they were of various lengths.Maybe they had been picked over and all that were left were small potatoes,but when I read fingerling,that is what I envision.

Thanks.

Trop

on edit:I got my answer about fingerlings...just about everything you want to know is somewhere on the 'net.




https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fingerling_potato
A fingerling potato is a small, stubby, finger-shaped type of potato which may be any heritage potato cultivars.

Last edited by Tropicalgrower; August 9, 2015 at 09:55 AM.
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Old August 9, 2015   #6
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Would anyone care to recommend a great tasting standard potato..or 2? A variety that is good baked boiled or mashed?

Thanks.

Trop
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Old August 10, 2015   #7
swardson
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tropicalgrower View Post
Would anyone care to recommend a great tasting standard potato..or 2? A variety that is good baked boiled or mashed?

Thanks.

Trop
You could go with any type really except russet if you want to use them boiled. As long as the potato isn't too starchy you're good to go. I usually get yellows flesh potatoes so my experience has been with Yukon Gold and Yellow Finn.

But why don't you get potatoes from a local market and plant those? I'm not sure if there are local varieties where you are but they are sure to be grown closer to you than something near Oregon.
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Old August 10, 2015   #8
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You could go with any type really except russet if you want to use them boiled. As long as the potato isn't too starchy you're good to go. I usually get yellows flesh potatoes so my experience has been with Yukon Gold and Yellow Finn.

But why don't you get potatoes from a local market and plant those? I'm not sure if there are local varieties where you are but they are sure to be grown closer to you than something near Oregon.
If I could find find a good tasting potato here,I would do just that.Trouble is,there isn't much choice that I have been able to find locally..I keep my eyes open when we visit a different market location,but I just don't seem to find anything different than what is available at our local market.When I say local market,I mean that is where all the produce in the area is available,as well as produce from the fields in Baguio.Vegetable retailers buy produce from Baguio,and then mark it up and re-sell it.The market is like a farmers market,except that most of it is covered and out of the weather,but still open air.Very few varietal choices.In fact,up until about 3 years ago,you couldn't even find lettuce in the market.

I will ask my Sis to check out her local Farmers Market.If she sees any fingerlings,I'll ask her to pick up some of each.Maybe a standard variety as well.

Last edited by Tropicalgrower; August 10, 2015 at 09:26 AM.
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Old August 10, 2015   #9
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The thing about growing potatoes, or other root crops, is that the soil that they were grown in has a strong influence over how they taste. Things like texture, size, shape, and cooking traits are strongly driven by genetics. Taste is strongly influenced by the soil. Before I rent a new field, I taste the soil to make sure that it tastes like something I'd like to eat.

I highly recommend Nematode's suggestion of starting out with True Potato Seeds. Growing from pollinated seeds was how I found varieties that have the traits that I value most in my garden.

Last edited by joseph; August 10, 2015 at 12:34 PM.
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Old August 10, 2015   #10
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Originally Posted by joseph View Post
The thing about growing potatoes, or other root crops, is that the soil that they were grown in has a strong influence over how they taste. Things like texture, size, shape, and cooking traits are strongly driven by genetics. Taste is strongly influenced by the soil. Before I rent a new field, I taste the soil to make sure that it tastes like something I'd like to eat.

I highly recommend Nematode's suggestion of starting out with True Potato Seeds. Growing from pollinated seeds was how I found varieties that have the traits that I value most in my garden.
Ok,I'll give it some serious thought.

It's the resistance to change thing ya know?Getting old and all that.


I need to look around at the treads on the subject,and see how long these tired old eyes can hold out. (I will start here http://www.tomatoville.com/showthread.php?t=12908 )

Can anyone suggest a definitive thread on TPS care and feeding? I know zero about the subject.It seems I remember seeing a list of offerings,but I wouldn't even know where to begin.

Thx.

Trop

Edit:
Can anyone tell me how long TPS seed will remain viable after receiving?

I just skimmed over his site..mainly looking for payment options.Looks like he doesn't accept PayPal.

Last edited by Tropicalgrower; August 10, 2015 at 10:10 PM.
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Old August 10, 2015   #11
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Quote:
Can anyone tell me how long TPS seed will remain viable after receiving?
Several years if left dry. If they are frozen, they can last more than 50 years.

Care for TPS seeds is similar to growing tomatoes, just smaller. They take about 6-8 weeks before large enough to transplant, and they prefer slightly cooler temperatures.

Tom Wagner has a ton of information on growing from TPS on his website. It may get blocked here, but it is tatermater.★★★★★★★★★.com

Last edited by NathanP; August 10, 2015 at 10:28 PM.
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Old August 10, 2015   #12
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Several years if left dry. If they are frozen, they can last more than 50 years.

Care for TPS seeds is similar to growing tomatoes, just smaller. They take about 6-8 weeks before large enough to transplant, and they prefer slightly cooler temperatures.

Tom Wagner has a ton of information on growing from TPS on his website. It may get blocked here, but it is tatermater.★★★★★★★★★.com
Thanks for the information Nathan.Very helpful.

Nice to know the seeds are viable for that long with proper care.I couldn't do them this year as it would be too late once they arrived here.My Sis won't ship till late Sept....Time to arrival here is 6 to 8 weeks..then another 6-8 weeks to get to transplant size.It starts getting hot here in Mid Feb,so it looks like I am already late for TPS for this season.

Again,thank you for the solid info.

Trop
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Old August 11, 2015   #13
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If you had about 120 days between now and then, you could try it. You would at least get some mini tubers to replant in your autumn. There are many people who grow two seasons a year in warm climates.
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Old August 11, 2015   #14
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Maybe I should try it.If there is enough seed,then I could give it another try if not successful this time.

Ok.I don't know much..but when people refer to the potato berry,is that after the flower is pollinated,then a berry forms?..like most everything else in nature?(On the varieties that can form berries of course)? I assume that is correct,and is probably the true definition of a "facepalm" question.
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Old August 12, 2015   #15
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I estimate that less than 15% of potato varieties make berries with any sort of regularity. Here's a photo of one that always makes berries for me.

Ripe potato berries:


Pollinated potato seeds:
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