This heirloom variety probably originated in Colombia, but I don’t think anyone knows for certain anymore. This is the most common variety of mashua outside the Andes. It has been grown in the UK for almost a hundred years and in the US for at least forty years. It also goes by the names Sidney and Pilifera (and probably others), although Pilifera is technically the name of a botanical variety that may cover more than one cultivar.
The tubers are long and white with purple eyes and some irregular purple blushing. They can range from less than an inch to a foot long, but the majority are usually four to six inches. This can be a very high yielding variety when allowed to climb and spread. It is early to sprout in the spring. Blanca has a fairly mild flavor for mashua; this is the heirloom variety that we are most likely to choose when cooking up some mashua for dinner, although I now generally prefer our varieties Copalis and Hoh as they cook to a mild flavor a little more quickly.