Some do some donâ€™t.Â Chitting seed potatoes encourages them to sprout before planting and thereby giving them a head start once in the ground, you will get an earlier harvest and might even get a slightly better crop.Â That said, they will grow without chitting.
Start chitting them from around late Jan or Feb about six weeks before planting.Â Stand each tuber with the blunt or rose end i.e. the one with the most number of â€˜eyesâ€™ (these are where the sprouts will come from) facing upwards. Put them in trays with some newspaper crumpled up in the bottom, this keeps them upright or old egg boxes, ideally not touching; make sure thereâ€™s plenty of natural light and a little bit of warmth, definitely no frost, around 8C-10C should do it. The sprouts should be small, knobbly and green/purple, if they become long and white this means thereâ€™s not enough light.
When the sprouts are about 1in long they are ready to plant out â€“ around March. Want bigger spuds? then leave only 3 sprouts on before planting by rubbing off the excess, however you will have less quantity, if youâ€™re ok with smaller but more potatoes leave them all on.
I have always chitted, and I personally donâ€™t want big spuds so donâ€™t rub off any sprouts, what about you? I would be really interested to know your experience with the humble but fab spud. Oh and what's your fave variety? Â