Plant Systematics and Evolution

, Volume 182, Issue 3, pp 239-252

First online:

A reexamination of infraspecific taxa of a wild potato,Solanum microdontum (Solanum sect.Petota:Solanaceae)

  • Ronald G. van den BergAffiliated withDepartment of Plant Taxonomy, Agricultural University Wageningen
  • , David M. SpoonerAffiliated withVegetable Crops Research Unit, Agricultural Research Service, USDA, Department of Horticulture, University of Wisconsin

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Current taxonomic interpretations ofSolanum microdontum Bitter partition the species into two or three infraspecific taxa, variously recognized as subspecies or varieties. The present study reexamines these taxa using morphological data from four individuals each of 69 accessions from most of the range of the species, planted in a common field plot. Our results show that the character states used to recognize infraspecific taxa inS. microdontum often vary within accessions and have no correlation with geography. We conclude that past hypotheses have used typological concepts and that infraspecific taxa are not warranted. This study questions other hypotheses of infraspecific taxa in sect.Petota.

Key words

Solanaceae Solanum sect.Petota Solanum microdontum Potatoes subspecies systematics varieties