The climatic Background to the problem of potato varieties for East Africa

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There is universal agreement that heat does not suit "our" potato plant. The famous British varieties have been developed in an area where the mean monthly maxima of their growing season vary between about 53°F. and 67°F., while no mean monthly temperature is higher than 60°F. It is the opinion of Salaman (1926) that probably a temperature of 80° or over in the shade will damage the growing crop. In Australia the view is held that "when the monthly mean rises above 75°F. potatoes no longer produce a profitable crop" (Bald, 1941); and, as we have seen, the Australian yield standard is low. In Potato Growing in Mauritius Coombes 0940) states: "The potato does best where the growing season temperatures range between 16° and 24°C. (61 and 7S°F.), the maximum yield being produced under the cooler conditions". It is not clear whether this is the result of observations made locally and the whole statement lacks precision; by the coincidence of Coombes' upper limit with Bald's is interesting.
East African Agricultural And Forestry Journal, 9 (IX), p. 203-212