Several days ago, I wrote about my search for the Prince Albert potato. I must tell you what has happened since then. While doing my morning meditation two days ago, I sent a message to my dad asking him to help me find this potato that had seemingly disappeared off the face of the earth. I told him that if I had a chance to grow this potato, it would be a way of honouring him. But I said I needed him to work some magic to make that happen.
The very next day I got an email from a man who is involved in the organization Seeds of Diversity. Someone had forwarded my query to him because he is a bit of a potato trivia expert. Well, it turns out he had received some potatoes from a woman here in Whitehorse some time back that he thought matched my description of the Prince Albert. This woman’s husband was from N.S. and had brought them to the Yukon about 50 years ago. She had apparently heard Potato Trivia Guy on CBC Radio talking about purple potatoes and thought he might be interested in seeing hers, so she sent him some.
I contacted the woman (who I happen to know) and yes indeed, she has potatoes that sound exactly like the kind my dad grew. She says she never knew their proper name – in her family they’d always called them Pugh’s Purples for lack of a better term (Pugh being her last name). It turns out she has shared her potatoes with a few farmers in the Yukon and some have been on display at our annual fall fairs. Funny that I never stumbled upon them before, but then again, I wasn’t looking until this year. She says she’ll be happy to give me some seed potato in the spring.
How ironic! Here I spent months looking all across Canada for these potatoes, and they were right under my nose the whole time.
Oh, and there’s another twist to this story. Potato Trivia Guy, who currently lives in Ontario, once lived in my hometown of Kentville, N.S. How cool is that?!