Although we talk of
Seed potatoes they are not, technically speaking, seeds. They are tubers. However, potato plants do also flower and produce fruit, which of course contain seeds.
Whilst wandering around the internet some time last year, I came across this forum thread all about growing potatoes from seed. The surprising thing is that it's possible at all, and that they'll crop within a year - not as heavily as growing from a tuber, but still a crop of sorts. I learnt that, unlike growing from tubers, potatoes grown from seeds will not come true to the parent. Some may consider this undesirable, as you don't really know what you're going to get, but I think it's quite good fun to introduce a bit of variation. There's always the possibility of breeding a new strain that's particularly well suited to my own garden. It also overcomes a problem in saving tubers, that blight and other diseases might be carried on from one generation to the next. Apparently this doesn't happen with seeds.
As an entertaining experiment, rather than seriously expecting to get much of a crop, I thought I'd give it a go. After all, collecting a few fruit as they dropped off the plants was no trouble at all. I kept them on a windowsill to ripen... and then failed to carry out the next steps, which are to cut open the fruit and spread the seeds out to dry. So it was that come the springtime, my saved potato seeds looked like this:
Potato fruit, not looking at their best. To be fair, they're no use to anyone when they do look good, because they're not ripe then
Undeterred, I squished the manky old fruit to extract the seeds and spread them about a bit in a couple of seed trays. Since they're related to tomatoes, I'm treating them the same, so started them in the propagator. As seedlings started to emerge, I had the problem that I have no idea what potato seedlings look like. I hoped they'd look like tomato seedlings, so I'd be able to recognise them that way, but they don't. Eventually, enough similar looking seedlings emerged in clusters where I hadn't spread the seeds out enough, that I decided those must be the potatoes.
Once they got to a reasonable size, I pricked them out into pots and now have quite a few healthy looking little plants (though a few of them got cooked under the glass, particularly those in the tallest pots, which didn't have ventilation with the glass resting on top).
I'm still not 100% convinced these are actually potatoes, though.