2019 Heritage Potato-Climate Adaptation Trial

Join citizen-growers across Canada in the 2019 Heritage Potato-Climate Adaptation Trial.

We will be testing 10 different potato varieties across Canada to document their growth, development and yield in a variety of growing condition.  Each participant will grow and observe just three varieties, randomly assigned.  At the end of the season all observations will be compiled  and shared widely.

We provide the seed potatoes and ongoing guidance through all steps of the process, from planting to observing to harvesting and taste-testing. Guidance will come primarily through emails.  If you don’t have reliable access to email, we can arrange for monthly phone calls and regulaur mail instead.

Register now to participate

Note: By signing up, you are registering as a citizen grower for the 2019 trials.  You will receive your seed potatoes at the mailing address provided some time prior to your anticipated planting date, as noted in the form.

You are also signing up to receive updates and information on a regular basis during the growing season.  You can unsubscribe at any time.

You can email me (valerie@heritagepotato.ca) at any time.

Thank You for being part of the 2019 Heritage Potato-Climate Adaptation Trial!


Frequently Asked Questions

I will be adding questions and answers here as they come in.

1. How Much Space Is Needed?

To have as many people participate as possible, we have two options for participation, the full-sized and the mini trial.  Both include 3 varieties, there are just fewer plants in the mini-trial.

We recommend planting in side by side rows for easy visual comparison.  Seed tubers are planted 12″/30 cm apart within a row, with 36″/90 cm between rows.

Full Trial:  You will receive 10-12 seed tubers of each of three varieties. This will require a plot of about 4m x 4m (12 ft * 12 ft).

Mini Trial:  You will receive 5 tubers of each variety, reducing the size of the plot by about half.

If you are only interested in trying out Ozette-Nootka, we can send you 3 tubers for local observation. (Check Ozette-Nootka for your trial type.)

2.  Can I water and mulch my trial potatoes?  What about pests and diseases – can I pick off the Colorado Potato Beetle larvae as I do with my main storage crop?

We want our growers to manage the trial potatoes the same way they manage their main crop potatoes.  This includes normal planting date, irrigation, mulch, pest control, harvest timing, etc. We will collect information on these practices to include in the analysis.

3.  I am a registered organic farm.  Can I participate without risking organic status?

All our seed potatoes will come from certified organic farms.  Where possible, they will be sourced from certified seed growers who are also organic.  Most heritage varieties are not being grown in the certified seed system, so will be sourced from other organic growers.  Most organic certifiers do not require the double certification, but you should check with your particular certifier.

4.  What weather monitoring equipment will I need?

This trial does not require in-field measuring equipment.  We do ask you to record rainfall in your field as well as any unusual weather events (frost, drought, large rainfalls, etc.).  We will obtain temperature records from the nearest weather station we can find.  If you are already recording weather, we are happy to have this information shared with us.

5.  Can I request certain varieties?

The trial is a ‘blind’ trial, meaning that you will not know the names of the potatoes you are observing until the end of the project.  This is important for the statistical analyses we will be doing at the end of the trial.

6.  Can I find out more information about the trial design?

We are using the ‘Tricot’ method developed by Bioversity International, using their ‘Climmob’ software.  Climmob was developed for use in Crowdsourcing Climate-Smart Agriculture.  You can read more about it at https://climmob.net/blog/. There are several You-Tube videos that explain the entire process, available here: