Temperature Effects on Tuber Production and Carbohydrates Partitioning in Different Cultivars during Consecutive Stages of Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) Growth


The main objective of this study was to assess responses of mid-early (Spunta) and mid-late (Bellini) potato cultivars to different temperature regimes during subsequent stages of potato growth. The impact of high temperature (25/22 °C day/night), low temperature (18/16 °C day/night) and intermediate temperature (20/18 °C day/night) was evaluated for different growth stages. Data were obtained for photosynthesis, carbohydrates in leaves, stems and tubers as well as production parameters. Enzyme activities were determined for sucrose-phosphate synthase in leaves, acid invertase in stems and acid and neutral invertases in tubers. Gene expression levels of relevant sugar metabolizing enzymes was quantified. A detailed correlation analysis revealed a strong impact of the expression level of sugar metabolizing enzymes in leaves on the final number of tubers per plant. Whereas total tuber yield increases with temperature, the number of tubers per plant was highest under low temperature conditions. Our data suggest an important role of the temperature on the length of the different growth stages.