This weekend we went along to a Potato Fair, to give it it’s proper name, London’s Charity Potato Fair And Seed Exchange. We were headed to South London, and when I heard this event being described on Radio London, I just had to go. I’ve been meaning to get more adventurous in my potato growing, but have always relied on the convenience of our allotments trading shed, that has a good supply of you trusty favourites like Pentland Javelin and Desiree. It was held in a fairly new school hall, but still had the air of a dusty old church hall. There was a line of tables with rows of buckets containing tubers of so many different and exotic sounding varieties it was bewildering! I immediately needed to sit down with a cup of tea and cake to recover from the confusion to my brain, and in the end let my other half narrow things down to a selction of four varieties. Belle de Fontenay, Juliette , Shetland Black, and the romantic sounding Mr Littles Yeltholm Gypsy.
I indulged myself at the Thomas Etty Heritage Seed stall. I first discovered their seeds through my favourite shop Labour and Wait, who stock them under their own label. The Purple Podded French Beans were so yummy and such a beautiful plant I had to get some more seeds, and was then drawn in by such wonderful sounding seed names, like the Crystal lemon Cucumber, Pink Brandywine Tomato, an Amish variety from before 1886.
There was also a wonderful stall selling antique gardening tools, really beautiful. I could kick myself for not getting the chaps details, but he might be at the Seedy Sunday happening down in Hove next weekend…….
There’s nothing like the anticipation of spring through a few seed packets and potato tubers!