Idaho potatoes

What variety is the well-know Idaho potato? The seed catalogs never identify any of their varieties as the "Idaho" potato. Yes, I know I probably can't grow a potato as tasty as an Idaho baker, but what variety is it? Ken
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Burbank Russet, also known as Idaho Netted Gem. The most commonly grown spud in the U.S.

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the ground?
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I'd get one from the health food store, because one from the regular store probably has been treated to keep the eyes from sprouting.
I have planted store-bought organic potatoes three times: a russet, a yukon gold, and a german butterball. They have hybridized into a nice yellow-fleshed, rough brown skinned, all-purpose potato that comes up here and there every year, even if I think I've harvested every last one of them.
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On Thu, 6 Jan 2005 19:58:44 -0500, "Ken Anderson"

sprout inhibitors. My experience is that they will sprout, they just take longer.
Common wisdom also says that store bought potatoes tend to be diseased, so to not plant them in your garden. If you plant the potatoes in acidic soil it will inhibit a lot of the diseases such as scab. I have planted store bought potatoes in 12 inch pots of peat mix with great results.
I would not discourage anyone from buying certified seed though. I usually do buy certified seed potatoes.
If I am at a garden center that has seed potatoes, I like to pick out the small ones because I can plant them whole, rather than cutting them. This can help avoid them rotting when planted. btw these smaller seed potatoes (of Idaho varieties) will produce normal sized potatoes at harvest.
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Usually a russet, typically russet burbank. http://radio.boisestate.edu/information/otherprojects/potato/russets.html
Several other varieties (other russets, norkotah (?sp), ...) have been and are being tried, but none are as popular.
Probably you would be happy with any of the dry, starchy "baking" potatoes, and some other variety may be better for your climate, soil and other growing conditions. You should check with a local university extension office and ask about which "baking" potato does best in your area.
(The other kinds of potato other than baking are sort of waxy/oily instead of getting fluffy when baked.)
The reason you'll seldom see a seed catalog identify an "Idaho Potato" is because Idaho is quite protective of that name. Legally only a potato grown in Idaho can be identified as an Idaho Potato.
My grandfather made a living growing the "Idaho Potato" both as food and as seed potatoes for many years. Last summer was the first year my uncle did not grow potatoes. No more free, fresh potatoes with a known history for me. :( Somehow alfalfa just isn't as appealing. :)
sdb
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says...

BTW, when we lived in Boise, the potatoes were awful! Found out that all the good ones get shipped out of state :-).
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Larry Blanchard wrote:

I didn't realize until last fall on a trip to northern Maine how big the potato industry is up there. It's a major portion of the economy. We figure that they send the Maine potatoes to Idaho and say "Hey, look! MAINE potatoes!!" and visa-versa.
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Steve

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On Thu, 06 Jan 2005 16:47:25 -0500, Ken Anderson wrote:

Just curious, why would you want to grow a super market variety potato? Potatos aren't any better when they are fresh, a potato that's been in your refrigerator for two months tastes the same as one that you just bought so there is no advantage to pulling one out of the ground and throwing it in to a pot. Also supermarket varieties are bred for yield and durability not for flavor. If you are going to grow a potato why don't you grow an exotic variety. We have something on the order of four varieties in our supermarkets, in Peru there are 8000 varieties of potatos. Surely there must be some way to get a hold of a potato other than an Idaho or a Maine.
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You are right in that there are numerous varieties of potatoes, many of them more tasty than others. When I was in Germany, I used to go to a restaurant that served Vienasnitzel and Homefrys. The potatoes were darker than the Idaho and had a kind of sweet taste. I've never been able to find the same potato here in the states.
Bill
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Sorry this response is so late. I just spotted your post.
Look up the "Plant Materials Center" in Alaska on a websearch. (They are attached to the Dept. of Natural Resources, Division of Ag.)
They have about 250 kinds of spuds. Email them and ask if anyone up there would know what variety is popular in Germany for homefries. I'll bet you someone will know and they'll probably be able to sell you some seed spuds.
Jan, in Homer, Alaska
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il Sat, 8 Jan 2005 18:39:34 -0500, "Ken Anderson" ha scritto:

You don't. You try a few on recommendations. :-)
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Cheers,
Loki Who has never had an Idaho potato...
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General Schvantzkoph wrote:

Well, I can't agree with that. I love the taste of fresh dug potatoes in the late summer. Definitely a better taste than after storage. Do you really store potatoes in the refrigerator? I've never done that because I have read that storing them that cold changes the flavor. It's hard to beat an Idaho russet potato for baking. Their wonderful fluffy white texture is the best. Of course, that fluffy texture makes them a poor choice for other uses. For boiled potatoes, served hot or cooled for use in a potato salad there are other choices. You need more of a waxy texture for boiling. This is where those unusual varieties really pay off. By the way, many years ago I did grow some sprouted Idaho russet potatoes in my garden. They had the same good baking quality as the one from the store but they didn't get as big nor were they very productive here in my northern NY garden.
Steve
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You should have started out by saying: "I've never tasted a home-grown potato, but ...."
You see, young home-grown potatoes have a taste beyond anything you can buy at the store, even for an identical variety--they are like a different vegetable! Just as the home-grown tomato has a flavour way beyond that of the store-bought one (even though they may be the same 'plastic' supermarket variety).
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ZsdbUse1+noZs snipped-for-privacy@zbigfoot.zcom.invalid writes:

Not as appealing, but alfalfa holds up longer in cold storage. <g>
Glenna
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snipped-for-privacy@aol.com writes:

My opinion is also that there is no comparison between a homegrown any-type-of potato and store bought. I usually leave mine in the ground until ready to use them (until late in November or early December); they sweeten as the weather gets colder (at least that's the case in my garden). It also leaves my garden not feeling so "empty" because the season is over. Just going out to dig them adds something to the day. :-)

I grew up in eastern Washington, mostly on my grandparents' farm who had lived in Idaho most of their younger years. No one in our family every put uncooked 'taters in the refrigerator. That includes my grandmother's brother who was a potato farmer with thousands of acres in cultivation. The potato sheds are quite different from our refrigerators, but still not as good as fresh from the garden.
The information around us is that things that are never stored in the refrigerator are potatoes, tomatoes and bananas. There are others also, but those come to mind at the moment.
Glenna
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