This profile was developed for production in the San Luis Valley. While some guidelines may be appropriate regardless of growing area, fine-tuning for specific production locales is recommended.

Cherry Red a medium-early maturing potato cultivar. Release is pending by the Colorado, North Dakota and Texas Agricultural Experiment Stations. Cherry Red is an attractive red-skinned cultivar, suitable for the fresh market. It was tested as DT6063-1R.

Plants/roots Cherry Red emerges rapidly and has a medium vine with red-purple flowers. It has a determinate growth habit and a moderate root system.

Tubers are oval to oblong, with a bright red skin. Flesh is white. Eyes are shallow and well distributed. Specific gravity is medium (1.084), however, high for a red-skinned cultivar.

Yield potential may exceed 450 to 500 cwt./A.


Pre-planting considerations Tubers have medium dormancy. Single drop or cut seed is acceptable. When using cut seed, utilize practices that enhance suberization and prevent decay by pathogens. A 9 inch spacing may optimize yield and tuber size. Plant seed about 4 inches deep with a good cover.

Fertility Apply total fertilizer in the range: N(140-180#), P(100-200#), K(0-60#). Seed producers may choose to use less N, because yield potential will not reach that of a commercial crop. Pre-plant incorporated N should be from 70 to 90#. Early season N applications do not seem to adversely affect the timing of tuberization. Sprinkler applied N should be in the 70 to 90# range at a rate of not more than 20# per application.

Irrigation Interval at the maximum ET is 2.5 to 3 days. Drought tolerance is moderate. Water usage will decline as vines mature, so monitor fields to prevent over watering late in the season and potential decay by pathogens such as Pythium or Phytophthora.

Pest control

Weeds Competition against weeds is good. Cherry Red is slightly sensitive to metribuzin. Adverse reactions to other commonly utilized herbicides for potato production have not been noted in grower experiences.

Insects Standard insect control measures generally are effective. Use of Di-Syston may result in some phytotoxicity symptoms.

Fungicides Control of foliar early blight usually requires 4 applications.

Tuber/bulking Cherry Red consistently sets 8-9 tubers per plant. Tubers are set somewhat shallow in the hill. Tuberization occurs early and tubers bulk at a very rapid rate early in the season. Cherry Red will occasionally develop growth cracks and second growth. Internal quality is good. Tubers have a moderate response to shatter and blackspot bruise.

Vine kill Average days from planting to vine kill are 100 to 105. Vine killing is usually required and is easy to accomplish. Adequate skin set occurs at about 21 days. Oversize tubers may be a problem, so carefully monitor the crop beginning the first week of August.


Cherry Red stores well, with few problems, and sprouting is minimal. The red color may fade slightly during storage, though not as substantially as that of other popular red cultivars.


Overall disease problems are minimal. Bacterial ring rot foliar symptom expression is adequate and occurs within 95 days after planting. Potato leafroll virus symptoms are also sufficient. Bacterial soft rot, caused by Erwinia, may be a problem in storage, and in the field as seed piece decay.


Foliar early blight Susceptible

Verticillium wilt

Blackleg Susceptible

Seedpiece decay Susceptible

Leafroll virus Susceptible

Leafroll net necrosis

PVY Susceptible

PVX Susceptible

Common scab

Powdery scab Susceptible

Bacterial ring rot Susceptible


Tuber early blight Moderately Susceptible

Bacterial soft rot Susceptible

Fusarium dry rot Moderate to Moderately Resistant

Leak (Pythium)

Pink rot (Phytophthora)

Silver scurf

Rhizoctonia scurf Moderately Resistant

*Disease reaction ratings = susceptible, moderately susceptible, moderate, moderately resistant and resistant.

Spring 1997