"Varieties of Andean potato (Solanum tuberosum Andigena) in Huancavelica, Perú.
There are about 5,000 potato varieties worldwide. Over 3000 of them are found in the Andes alone, mainly in Peru, Bolivia, Ecuador, Chile, and Colombia.
There are two major subspecies of Solanum tuberosum: andigena, or Andean; and tuberosum, or Chilean. The Andean potato is adapted to the short-day conditions prevalent in the mountainous equatorial and tropical regions where it originated; the Chilean potato, however, native to the Chiloé Archipelago, is adapted to the long-day conditions prevalent in the higher latitude region of southern Chile.
Over 99% of the presently cultivated potatoes worldwide descended from varieties that originated in the lowlands of south-central Chile, which have displaced formerly popular varieties from the Andean highlands.
The potato was originally believed to have been domesticated independently in multiple locations, but later genetic testing of the wide variety of cultivars and wild species proved a single origin for potatoes in the area of present-day southern Peru and extreme northwestern Bolivia, where they were domesticated approximately 7,000–10,000 years ago.
Photo: Märtin Märtïn"