Wild potato species (Solanum section Petota Solanaceae) in the Tunari National Park, Andean Region of Cochabamba, Bolivia


The Tunari National Park is located in the Tunari Mountain Range, part of the Cochabamba Range in the Bolivian Andes. The Park is home to species of wild potato (Solanum section Petota Solanaceae), but these are now threatened by human activity. The aims of the present study were: 1) to determine the distribution of wild potato species in the Park, and, 2) to determine the size of their populations. Collection routes were established within the Park, and the species present along them recorded in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Their population sizes were determined in 2008. Four wild potato species were identified: S. capsicibaccatum, S. berthaultii, S. brevicaule and S. toralapanum. S. capsicibaccatum was the most abundant and had the most extensive distribution, followed by S. berthaultii; these last two species are likely endemic. The other species, although probably also endemic, were much less widely distributed; some limiting factor(s) would therefore appear to be acting upon them. S. berthaultii showed variations in corolla shape (rotate, pentagonal and semi-stellate) and flower colour (whitish-lilac to blue-lilac). The remaining species showed no apparent intraspecific variation in their morphological characteristics.

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Morante, M. and Coca-Salazar, A. (2014) Wild potato species (Solanum section Petota Solanaceae) in the Tunari National Park, Andean Region of Cochabamba, Bolivia. Open Journal of Ecology, 4, 28-32. doi: 10.4236/oje.2014.42004.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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