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Old September 16, 2006   #1
dokutaaguriin
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Default Favourite Potato..Irish Cobbler

It took me over five years to find out that Irish Cobbler is actually the variety called danshaku in Japan. Hokkaido, the far north island in Japan, is famous for its potatoes. My wife grew up on this variety and I tasted quite a few when I lived there. I finally found a reference in a Japanese book about vegetables and other foods that danshaku is Irish Cobbler. (It may seem strange but I was ecstatic to find this out!) Part of the problem in finding this variety was the translation from Japanese to English because danshaku means baron.
Five years was quite along wait and in the mean time in Hokkaido newer, more productive varieties that have the same creamy type flesh have come on to the market.
Can anyone suggest another more productive variety that can match the taste and texture of Irish Cobbler?
Jeff
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Old September 17, 2006   #2
Tom Wagner
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Jeff,

Thanks for your story about the Irish Cobbler.


Cobblers, one the great potato varieties in my opinion.

One of the first varieties of potatoes I worked with in breeding was the Irish Cobbler. I still have the my research paper done at the University of Kansas, of which it received an A, complete with photos of the Cobbler offspring. Some really good flavors in one clone as I remember.

Baron Ryokichi Kawada, interesting character in Hokkaido history:

Eight years spent in Scotland; Because of his English-speaking ability, Ryokichi was singled out to be sent, in 1878, to Glasgow. The only local product he brought back to Hokkaido was the Irish cobbler potato, popularized in Japan as the danshaku imo. I can see now where the name translation to “Baron” comes from.

Irish Cobbler, called "Danshaku" in Japanese was designated as a promoted variety in 1928 and is still the main variety accounting for more than 60 % of cultivated land of potato for direct consumer's consumption.

I was trying to figure out why the name “Danshaku” for the Baron. But then, alternate names given for this variety include: Cobbler, Early Beauty, Early Eureka, Early Dixie, Early Petrosky, Early Standard, Early Victor, Early Waubonsie, Eureka, Extra Early Eureka, First Early, Flourball, Fruehe Amerikaner, Happy Medium, Irish Daisy, New Early, New Early Standard, New White Victor, Nittany Cobbler, Per Jan, Potentate, Trust Buster. Lord, a “Cobbler” by any other name is still a “Cobbler” in my book.

An unidentified breeder in Massachusetts discovers Irish Cobbler variety from a sport of Early Rose - 1876.

The origin of Irish Cobbler is not positively known. Lore suggests it was first grown by Irish shoemakers in the northeastern U.S. It would be interesting if any researcher has done a DNA test to verify the linkage.

Irish Cobbler is a very early maturing variety that was widely grown. especially when I was young. Eating quality is frequently said to be very good. My fifty years of breeding has produced better ones, though. Later post on that issue, Jeff.


Plants are medium in size, erect to spreading. Stems are thick to medium and are prominently angled. Nodes are slightly swollen and green; the internodes have a slight reddish-purple pigmentation. Wings are green, straight or occasionally slightly waved and are frequently double at the base of stems. Leaves have four pairs of primary leaflets which are medium in size and ovate. Flower color is lilac with white tips. Anthers are orange yellow and pollen is medium in abundance but of poor quality.
Tubers are round, medium to large in size with deep stem and apical ends. Lateral eye depth ranges from shallow to deep. Skin color is creamy white and texture is smooth. Flesh color is white.

The major advantage of Irish Cobbler is its earliness. Another perceived advantage is the culinary quality. This variety is resistant to mild mosaic and immune from wart. The deep eyes and irregular shape of tubers have been the primary disadvantages.




A round white potato, the Cobbler is slightly difficult to grow (it bruises easily) and with deep eyes that make it hard to peel, the Cobbler was popular with farmers for years not only because of the popularity in the market, but also because it matures earlier than the other varieties. This is so important.

I remember as a boy growing up in Kansas, that we needed an alternative to Cobbler and we planted a lot of Kennebec, a high yielding fast growing variety, widely adapted. Required close planting as it produced oversized and rough tubers, and set tubers far out in the row, often times greening badly when tubers found the sides of the row. But it had excellent storage quality, with long dormancy periods. Since we did not irrigate potatoes much in the old days, the Kennebecs would be hurt by the typical dry weather that set in before the plants would mature. Hence, the Cobblers would be better because of their earliness. Too dry of soil would leave the Kennebecs flabby and soft, but the Cobblers would be firm and turgid, especially important if you wanted to put them in storage.

I remember praying for rain as a kid. One year I think I prayed too loudly or something. We had 19 inches of rain during July and any potatoes not harvested during the harvest month of July rotted!

Tom Wagner
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Old September 18, 2006   #3
dokutaaguriin
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Tom,
Thanks so much for the information you provided about danshaku imo, Irish Cobbler potato. I remember reading somewhere on the net that it came from Early Rose which is another variety I would like to track down.
I am not sure if the kanji characters will display but here there are:
??? (dan shaku imo)
The first one means man, the second one means "a title" and "the peerage", and the last character means "potato".

Our soils also dry out in August and we usually get one deluge of rain which I understand can cause scab on potatoes. It happened this year to me, but no big deal as it caused very light damage to the potatoes.

Thanks again,
Jeff
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Old September 19, 2006   #4
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Jeff,

Your posts about the Irish Cobbler allow me to gather some "Off the wall" info on this variety. I wanted to pursue the Hokkaido connection a bit more, therefore, I found a wealth of data that blew me away.

Irish Cobblers popularity in Japan corresponds to the United States “Russet Burbank”.

Even though potatoes were introduced by the Dutch into Japan during the early 1600’s, it wasn’t until the late 1800’s that any real production started. That is about the time the Irish Cobbler was introduced into Japan. Hokkaido now produces 70% of Japan’s potatoes and its yields average a staggering 820 cwt per acre!

I studied a bit about where some of Japan’s new potato varieties came from and found that many of them derived from the NATIONAL AGRICULTURAL EXPERIMENT STATION, ENIWA, HOKKAIDO.

I noticed that the Irish Cobbler was like a pioneer in the pedigree of many Japanese varieties.
The founder effect, and/or bottle-necking of Irish Cobbler germplasm in Japan is huge, really huge. I did a pedigree search on how many Japanese potato varieties had Irish Cobbler as a direct parent. I found a dozen or more. Then I did a search further back into the pedigree of some and found it used as a grandparent all the way back to being used as a great, great, great, great, grandparent. Many times, Irish Cobbler was located in several lines on the female and male lineage.

Here is a pedigree search of direct crosses of Irish Cobbler. Notice how it was used overwhelmingly as the female parent. That follows the pattern of its supposed parent --Early Rose. If you follow potato pedigree info as closely as I do, you will know that the curse of potato breeding is the poor pollen parent trait that comes down directly from Early Rose.



3702-125 JAP IRISH COBBLER x DEODARA


NORIN NO.1 JAP 1943 IRISH COBBLER x DEODARA


NORIN NO.2 JAP 1945 IRISH COBBLER x PEPO

BANSEI-DANSHAKU-IMO JAP IRISH COBBLER mutant

BIFUKASHIRO JAP 1942 IRISH COBBLER x DEODARA

CHITOSE JAP 1953 IRISH COBBLER x HONIKU 393

HATSUFUBUKI JAP 1979 IRISH COBBLER x WB 61037-4

HOKKAISHIRO JAP 1938 IRISH COBBLER x PEPO

KITAAKARI JAP 1987 IRISH COBBLER x TUNIKA

KW 85093-33 JAP IRISH COBBLER x W553-4 (adg)

OOJIRO JAP 1954 IRISH COBBLER x NORIN NO. 1 (IRISH COBBLER x DEODARA)

SHIMAKEI 232 JAP (IRISH COBBLER x PEPO) x SHIMAKEI 169

SHIROBANA-DANSHAKU-IMO JAP IRISH COBBLER mutant

Furthering my research on Japanese varieties I found quite a list to study. I could not find all the exact lineage of this group but here are but a few of them and their pedigree info:

Benimaru,
Bihoro
Chijiwa
Danohakuimo
Dejima
Eniwa
Hokkaiaka
Jukijiro
Nagasaki Zairai
Niseco
Norin 1
Norin 2
Ojiiro
Rishiri
Shireto
Tachibana
Tarumae
Toyoshiro
Unzen
Waseshiro
May Queen
Dejima
Nishiyutaka
Kita-akari
Touya
Sayaka
Hokkaikogane
Kitahime
Beniakari
Konafubuke
Inca-no-mezam
Inca Red
Inca Purple



BENIMARU JAP 1938 LEMBKES FRUHE ROSEN x PEPO

BIHORO JAP 1969 HOKKAI 29 x HOCHPROZENTIGE

DEJIMA JAP 1971 HOKKAI 31 x UNZEN

ENIWA JAP 1961 SHIMAKEI 267 x SHIMAKEI 232 (IRISH COBBLER x PEPO) x SHIMAKEI 169


HOKKAIAKA JAP 1965 2070AB(31) x SHIMAKEI 290 (NORIN NO. 1 x GINEKE)


JUKIJIRO JPN 1961 KENNEBEC x NORIN NO. 2 (IRISH COBBLER x PEPO)


RISHIRI JAP 1960 41089-8 (IRISH COBBLER IS A G-G. GRANDPARENT)
x NORIN NO. 1 (IRISH COBBLER x DEODARA)


SHIRETOKO JAP 1967 HOKKAI 24 x SHIMAKEI 291 (NORIN NO. 1 x ALPHA)

TACHIBANA JAP 1955 NORIN NO. 1 (IRISH COBBLER x DEODARA) x KATAHDIN


TARUMAE JAP 1969 OOJIRO (IRISH COBBLER x { NORIN NO. 1 (IRISH COBBLER x DEODARA)} x HOCHPROZENTIGE


TOYOSHIRO JAP 1976 HOKKAI 19 x ENIWA BTW IRISH COBBLER IS A G-G GRANDPARENT ON ONE SIDE AND A G. GRANDPARENT ON ANOTHER.

UNZEN JAP 1955 NORIN NO. 1( IRISH COBBLER x DEODARA) ) x KA TAHDIN


WASESHIRO JAP 1974 KONKEI 7 x HOKKAI 39 BTW,IRISH COBBLER IS A GREAT-GREAT GRANDPARENT OF WASESHIRO descending from Konkei

NISHIYUTAKA JAP 1978 DEJIMA x CHOUKEI 65 Note; Irish Cobbler is a g. grandparent

KONAFUBUKI JAP 1981 TOYOSHIRO x WB 66201-10

BENIAKARI JAP 1994 HOKKAI 61 x R392-50 (IRISH COBBLER IS A G.G.G.G GRANDPARENT

SAYAKA JAP 1995 PENTLAND DELL x R392-50

I know this information is a bit esoteric, but gleaming the trivia for the larger picture is my goal. The data here may guide one to a new variety with the Irish Cobbler qualities, but without the defects such as after cooking darkening.

Tom Wagner
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Old September 19, 2006   #5
dokutaaguriin
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Hi Tom,
WOW, thanks for the information about danshakuimo. Little did I nor for that matter most people in Japan know about the importance of this potato.
One of the varieties that immediately caught my attention was May Queen. May Queen was the other famous potato for people in Hokkaido. I always thought that it was a variety from Scotland or something because that is how it sounds to me when it is pronounced. I can't believe that danshaku imo is part of its family tree. I also thought that meekuin was a tasty variety for Japanese dishes like gratin, pot-au-feu.
The last three (Inca series) seem to have become quiet popular. My father in law grew some Inca no mezame I could not believe how sweet like a Japanese sweet potato (satsumaimo))and creamy they were.
Seeing as the breeding with danshaku came out of a Hokkaido Research station, I am not surprised to see the words north and sea come up frequently as well as the names of smaller towns and villages on the island. (Hokkaido= North Sea Route)
Jeff
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Old May 22, 2013   #6
Stimacked
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Benimaru,
Bihoro
Chijiwa
Danohakuimo
Dejima
Eniwa
Hokkaiaka
Jukijiro
Nagasaki Zairai
Niseco
Norin 1
Norin 2
Ojiiro
Rishiri
Shireto
Tachibana
Tarumae
Toyoshiro
Unzen
Waseshiro
May Queen ( egg shaped russett with white flesh)
Dejima
Nishiyutaka
Kita-akari ( russett skin with creamy white flesh)
Touya
Sayaka
Hokkaikogane
Kitahime
Beniakari
Konafubuke
Inca-no-mezame ( Russet with yellow flesh, maybe similar to Yungay??)
Inca Red
Inca Purple

Apart from Danshaku, the Irish Cobbler Potato
I'm, Growing the highlighted four of the above as well as another eight kinds:
Andes Red (Red skin, white flesh, similar to Inca Red??)
Destroyer (as mentioned above, mutated from Red Moon)
Red Moon ( Red skinned, Yellow fleshed, said to be from an American variety)
Inka no Hitomi (similar to Inka no Mezame)
Shadow Queen (purple skin, light purple flesh, seems to be advertised as a darker purple)
Star Ruby ( red skin, red flesh?)
Northern Ruby ( purple skin, light purple flesh, I think)

These snaps are not of my tats by the way. Hope I get to see some tats of a similar size or color!!!!!!!

Wow this thread of 7 years ago has been reborn, woops, meant to post it in the thread about Japan.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg starruby_t_s.jpg (13.0 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg starruby-flower.jpg (20.7 KB, 5 views)
File Type: jpg kitaakari_t_s.jpg (25.7 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg kitaakari_flower.jpg (35.2 KB, 4 views)
File Type: jpg andes red.jpg (22.5 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg andes red flowers.jpg (36.1 KB, 6 views)
File Type: jpg Shadow Queen.jpg (19.6 KB, 4 views)
File Type: jpg incanohitomi.jpg (28.2 KB, 2 views)
File Type: jpg red-moon-potato.jpg (100.9 KB, 3 views)
File Type: jpg destroyer potatoes.jpg (21.4 KB, 4 views)

Last edited by Stimacked; May 22, 2013 at 11:20 PM.
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