Potato Day at Ryton Organic Gardens - Sunday 29th January 2006

Take your pick from 150 years of potatoes!


Garden Organic will be giving visitors a chance to take their pick from more than 150 years of varieties during Potato Day at Ryton Organic Gardens, Warwickshire.


A superb selection of nearly 100 different types of tubers will be on offer at this popular event - supported by Waitrose and Thompson & Morgan - on Sunday, January 29, from 9.30am to 5pm. These varieties will span more than 150 years of potato history, from the Pink Fir Apple that dates back to 1850 right through to the latest Sarpo Axona and Mira varieties. More than one third of the varieties on offer will be organic.

Alan Wilson, Technical Manager, Agronomy, for Waitrose, says: “Potato Day continues to play a major role in raising potato variety awareness. More and more unusual varieties are appearing in Waitrose. This is something all Garden Organic members and supporters of Potato Days can be proud of. Come and see the ancient Fortyfold to the silky smooth Maris Piper. And who is Felside Hero? The best eating potato of all? Come and find out the real identity for this, and so many other varieties for yourself.”


Garden Organic’s Potato Days attract more than 2,000 visitors every year (a separate event is held for members the day before). The charity has been running these events since 1994 to give gardeners access to more unusual varieties and promote the diversity of British potatoes.

Colin Randel, Vegetable Product Manager for Thompson & Morgan, says: “We are very pleased to be sponsoring this important event in the potato enthusiast’s calendar and helping in the promotion of the diversity of potatoes available to the UK home gardener.”


Potato expert Alan Romans will be sharing his passion for varieties past and present at Potato Day. He will give a talk revealing his “Top Ten Tubers of All Time” and sign copies of his new book, aptly named “The Potato Book”, which covers their fascinating history, all aspects of growing and more than 150 varieties.


A character dressed as Sir Walter Raleigh will also give a “Potted History of Potatoes”. He will explain that - although he often gets the credit for “discovering” potatoes and bringing them back to British shores - their real history is much richer and dates back to Peru 6,000 years ago!

Gardeners will be able to learn how to grow great spuds at a series of useful talks, including “Organic Potato Growing” and “The Pest and Disease Problem-solver”, plus a “Question and answer session”.

Visitors will also be able to explore the delicious tastes of different varieties during cookery demonstrations, and enjoy a special potato-themed menu in Ryton’s award-winning restaurant. Fun children’s activities will be on offer to keep younger visitors entertained.


Potato Day, from 9.30am to 5pm, can be enjoyed for the usual admission charges at Ryton Organic Gardens: £4.50 for adults, £4 for concessions and £2 for children under 16.


To find out more visit, email or call 024 7630 3517.

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