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Importance of potato late blight in Argentina, and the effect of fungicide treatments on yield increments over twenty years. Casilla , Balcarce, Buenos Aires, Argentina. Corresponding author: jmantecon balcarce. Late blight Phytophthora infestans is the most destructive fungal disease of potato Solanum tuberosum in Argentina, reducing yields considerably.
Blight severity was rated five times each season on the basis of the percentage of diseased foliage caused by late blight. Late blight was prevalent and severe each year, reducing yields significantly particularly for marketable tubers.
The average yields increased on fungicide treated plots was Under the climatic conditions of southwest Argentina, total crop loss on non fungicide treated plots was not obtained in 20 years; therefore late blight was not a completely limiting factor for potato production. However, fungicide treatment appears to be essential to obtain high quality yields. Key words: Chemical control, late blight, Phytophthora infestans, potato, potato diseases, Solanum, yield increases. Los rendimientos alcanzados en parcelas tratadas fueron siempre significativamente superiores a los testigos sin tratar.
Potato Solanum tuberosum L. It was the basic food of the pre-Columbian society. This planting area was maintained for nearly three decades but the potato acreage tended to decline after with approximately , ha produced during the 's. This decrease inpotato planting howeeer did not affect total production, which increased up to nearly 2 0 t0 2. Late blight Phytophthora infestans is the most destructive fungal disease of potato worldwide, reducing the available photosynthetic area, which in turn reduces yields considerably Cox and Large, ; Hooker, It is one of the few diseases that frequently cause a complete crop loss.
Damages caused by late blight depend on the infection time and severity. Clean potato seed, free of P. Crop rotations, including non-susceptible crops, are also implemented to avoid volunteer potato plants. Potato fields should be far away from a pile of potatoes or other infected crop residues where the pathogen can survive. Late blight was first found in Argentina in Severe outbreaks have been reported since The disease causes different degrees of damage according to climate conditions during crop development.