Potatoes are classified according to the length of time they take to mature, but this can be influenced by weather. Usually described as first early, second early and maincrop potatoes. These names indicate time of planting and harvest.
Second early potatoes mature in 110–120 days.
Compared to maincrop potatoes, first and second earlies are lower yielding, usually have smaller tubers, need less space and escape some of the diseases, such as blight.
They are generally eaten as soon as harvested – enjoyed as ‘new potatoes’ – while maincrop cultivars can either be used fresh from the ground or stored for winter use.