Identifying the eyes on your tubers can be tricky. If you decide to split your tubers in the fall/winter eyes will be less apparent than if you wait and divide in the spring. In the spring, your tubers will have a chance to warm up (temperatures in the mid-high 50s) and eyes will begin to emerge.
Here are a few tips to confidently identify eyes.
- Eyes will ALWAYS be at the crown of the tuber, where the stalk was growing and the central point of all the other tubers. Eyes will never form on the body or at the roots on the tuber.
- It is likely that every tuber on the clump may not have a viable eye, while others may have multiple eyes.
- There are some varieties that show eyes quickly and other varieties that take quite a bit longer to show their eyes. Do not be worried; give them a little time, a warm space and within a few weeks they will start showing eyes.
- You will need a decent piece of the crown (where the eye is) to be attached to your tuber for the eye to develop. It is best practice to keep at least 1cm of the crown attached.
- Below are a few stages of eyes forming. Eyes can look very different at different stages of development. As you will see, some look like nothing more than a rough bump at the crown, others are very obvious sprouts that have had more time to develop. Eyes will sometimes be whiteish, light green and dark purple.
In the image above you can see clippers pointing to a swollen bump on the crown of the tuber. This is an eye forming.
In this image, you can see light colored bumps protruding, this is where sprouts will begin to shoot in the spring.
Lastly, the image above is a clump of tubers with three very obvious shoots already starting.
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