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Morphophysiology of potato (Solanum tuberosum) in response to drought stress: paving the way forward

Hill, D., Nelson, D., Hammond, J. ORCID: and Bell, L. ORCID: (2021) Morphophysiology of potato (Solanum tuberosum) in response to drought stress: paving the way forward. Frontiers in Plant Science, 11. ISSN 1664-462X

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To link to this item DOI: 10.3389/fpls.2020.597554


The cultivated potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) is currently the third most important food crop in the world and is becoming increasingly important to the local economies of developing countries. Climate change threatens to drastically reduce potato yields in areas of the world where the growing season is predicted to become hotter and drier. Modern potato is well known as an extremely drought susceptible crop, which has primarily been attributed to its shallow root system. This review addresses this decades old consensus, and highlights other, less well understood, morphophysiological features of potato which likely contribute to drought susceptibility. This review explores the effects of drought on these traits and goes on to discuss phenotypes which may be associated with drought tolerance in potato. Small canopies which increase harvest index and decrease evapotranspiration, open stem-type canopies which increase light penetration, and shallow but densely rooted cultivars, which increase water uptake, have all been associated with drought tolerance in the past, but have largely been ignored. While individual studies on a limited number of cultivars may have examined these phenotypes, they are typically overlooked due to the consensus that root depth is the only significant cause of drought susceptibility in potato. We review this work, particularly with respect to potato morphology, in the context of a changing climate, and highlight the gaps in our understanding of drought tolerance in potato that such work implies.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Life Sciences > School of Agriculture, Policy and Development > Department of Crop Science
ID Code:95232


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