The Klamath Basin is one of several excellent high elevation, short season, isolated seed production areas. The Klamath area leads the state in total seed production. Seed is grown in several isolated valleys at an average elevation of 4,100 feet primarily in three areas: Lower Klamath Lake, Upper Klamath Lake, and Dairy-Bonanza. Klamath County has produced a large volume of seed for over 60 years. Nearly all major western varieties are grown, but Russet Burbank and Russet Norkotah dominate production. Jackson County is included in this production area.
Production is centered primarily in Crook, Deschutes, and Jefferson counties with some seed in Lake County. Elevation averages 3,000 feet. Fields are located near Culver, Sisters, Redmond and Powell Butte. The area has a seed potato tradition dating back nearly 70 years. Local growers are well acquainted with the importance of high quality seed. The principal varieties are Russet Burbank, Ranger Russet, and Russet Norkotah.
Seed growers are located in Baker, Union, and Wallowa counties. Elevation ranges from 2,000 to 4,300 feet. Nearly all of the seed is grown at the higher elevation. Wallowa County growers have established a seed control area which prohibits production of any potatoes without an inspection for diseases. Wallowa County has produced seed for 27 years. Russet Burbank is the principal variety.
Some seed is produced in northwest Malheur, Grant, and Harney counties, well isolated from major commercial production areas. These areas average 4,000 feet and are relatively new to seed potatoes.