Research Article
Volume 7 Issue 4 - 2021
Major Weeds of Ecuador. II. Potato
Ricardo Labrada*
Ex-FAO Technical Officer, Plant Protection Service, Rome, Italy
*Corresponding Author: Ricardo Labrada, Ex-FAO Technical Officer, Plant Protection Service, Rome, Italy.
Received: April 09, 2021; Published: April 30, 2021


Potato is one of the main traditional crops in Ecuador, extensively grown in La Sierra, i.e. high-altitude ecosystem. Its production is an important staple for people of those areas and for export to neighboring Colombia. Yields are relatively low and not corresponding with the potential of the crop varieties. This low productivity is due to several biotic constraints among them weeds, which cover the crop canopy for long period of its cycle. The best way to conform a system for weed management is identifying main weed species present and their frequency/abundance. To this end a survey was carried out in 39 ha of different potato fields in two areas of northern Ecuador, San Gabriel in Carchi and Imbabura, and another area in the center, Cotopaxi. Weed cover was visually assessed using a scale where 1- up to 5% weed cover and 4-more than 50%. These values were processed to determine Absolute and Relative Frequencies, average weed cover and finally SI- index of infestation severity. Average weed cover were 2,3 for San Gabriel (Carchi) and 2,4 for Imbabura, while in Cotopaxi it was 1,7. In the survey 19 plant species from 9 families were found, only 3 of them native. Persicaria nepalensis showed the highest SI in fields of San Gabriel and Imbabura, followed by Brassica napus, Galinsoga parviflora, Rumex obtusifolius and Taraxacum officinale in San Gabriel, and G. parviflora, Gnaphalium spicatum, R. obtusifolius, Lepidium bipinnatifidum and T. officinale in Imbabura, while in Cotopaxi Chenopodium album showed the highest SI followed by Fumaria officinalis, G. parviflora and Raphanus raphanistrum. It is recommended to keep the crop weed free during the critical period of weed competition, and to test and validate rotatory hoe for inter row weeding. The effectiveness of herbicides for chemical control should also be determined in addition to risk assessment of the environmental impact of proposed compounds.

Keywords: Weeds; Ecuador. II. Potato


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Citation: Ricardo Labrada. “Major Weeds of Ecuador. II. Potato”. EC Agriculture 7.4 (2021): 18- 24.

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