Breeder: W. De Jong
Creamy, nutty and buttery (even without the butter), this little potato is abundantly delicious. 100 days to maturity; 75 days for new potatoes.
Each Upstate Abundance purchase sold supports public plant breeding research at Cornell University.
Second-generation potato breeder Walter De Jong knows a winning potato when he sees one. Which is why, when he first spotted trial “NY150” among his field plots in 2004, he immediately took note. Walter’s goal at the the time was to breed a more resilient potato—high yielding and attractive in the field, and resistant to diseases plaguing potato growers in the Northeast, such as Potato Virus Y (PVY) and late blight.
Walking the rows, Walter was surprised to discover one experimental line that yielded an unexpected bonus: an abundance of golf-ball-sized potatoes with bright white flesh. By conventional market standards at the time, they were a little too small, but Walter and field manager Matt Falise thought that NY150 was something worth pursuing—a suspicion confirmed when they first tasted it.
Over the years, still deemed “unmarketable,” NY150 earned a quiet cult following, first within Walter’s lab, and then beyond. Growers praised its uncommon size (naturally small, even at normal seed spacing), and cooks coveted its exceptionally creamy texture and nutty flavor.
Ready for a national stage, the recently named “Upstate Abundance” remains Walter and Matt’s favorite eating potato. And just recently, Walter learned something new about his beloved potato: its lineage includes a variety developed by Walter’s father, a retired potato breeder himself. How’s that for prized pedigree?
Our Upstate Abundance seed potatoes were produced in NY.
Days to Maturity: 100 days; 75 days for new potatoes.
— Soil requirements: Fertile, well-drained soils with an optimal pH of 5.5-6.0.
— Hilling: Mound soil covering half of the plant to protect tubers from light exposure and increase yield. Repeat until hills are about 12" high.
— Produces an abundance of early, golf-ball-sized potatoes. Most small potatoes currently for sale are produced by planting potato seed pieces very close together and killing the vines early when the tubers are still immature and small. Upstate Abundance produces small potatoes at normal seed spacing, so less seed is needed, and the vines don't need to be killed early to keep the tubers small.
— Plant spacing: 8-9”
— Row spacing: 36”
— Plant potatoes 2-3" deep in mid-to late spring. Will tolerate cool soil and frost but best planted later for higher yields.
— One day before planting, cut tubers into .75-1.5 oz. (about 1" diameter, maximum weight equal to a golf ball) pieces, with at least two "eyes" per piece. Small tubers may be planted whole. Allow cut tubers to dry before planting.
— 6-12 days to emergence.
Pest + Disease Info
— Diseases: Resistant to Golden Nematode Race Ro1 and Potato Virus Y (PVY). Some demonstrated resistance to late blight. Can be susceptible to common scab, shatter bruise, blackspot bruise. Use best management practices such as crop rotation, sufficient watering and moisture management, and removal of crop debris post-harvest to prevent common potato diseases.
— Insect Pests: Use row covers, handpicking or organic insecticides such as spinosad to control for pests such as colorado potato beetles, aphids and leafhoppers.
For new potatoes (75 days), gently scrape away hilled soil to uncover harvest, keeping the growing plants intact; then re-cover roots. For mature potatoes, dig tubers about 2 weeks after foliage has died back in the fall. Brush off soil and dry before storing.
Cure for a few days and store in a dark, cool, humid place at 40˚F. Use boxes or crates with airflow.
What better way to prove a potato’s merits than simply boiled? Place potatoes in a pot and fill with water to cover. Add salt, then more salt; don’t stop until it tastes like seawater. Bring water to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cook until potatoes are fork tender.