Free Content A Morphometric Study of Species Boundaries of the Wild Potato Solanum Series Conicibaccata: a Replicated Field Trial in Andean Peru

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Abstract:

Solanum series Conicibaccata contains about 40 wild potato (section Petota) species distributed from southern Mexico to central Bolivia. It contains diploids (2n = 2x = 24), tetraploids (2n = 4x = 48) and hexaploids (2n = 6x = 72) and some polyploids are likely allopolyploids. Our morphological phenetic study in an Andean site in central Peru (12°S, 3200 m altitude) is a replicated study from one done in the north central United States (45°N, 180 m elevation) but uses more species (28 vs. 25), accessions (173 vs. 100), and morphological characters (72 vs. 45) and also includes members of related series Piurana. Both US and Peruvian studies provide phenetic support with Canonical Discriminant Analyses (but poorly if at all with Principal Components Analyses) to distinguish the following species or species groups in series Conicibaccata: 1) S. agrimonifolium and S. oxycarpum as a possible single species, and 2) S. longiconicum (tetraploids from Mexico and Central America), 3) the South American Conicibaccata diploids as a possible single species, except for 4) S. trinitense that is distinctive, 5) the South American tetraploids as a group except for 6) S. flahaultii that is distinctive. However, character states among these species or species groups are often present only by using a range of widely overlapping character states (polythetic support). We suspect that our continuing molecular studies will support the synonymy of many of these species.
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