Opening Eyes on Seedling Tuber Quality in Potato: Size Matters

Julia E. Stockem*, Merijn D. Bus, Michiel E. de Vries, Paul C. Struik

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


For potato, diploid hybrid breeding is a novel breeding technique that speeds up the development of new varieties. A consequence of hybrid breeding is the introduction of hybrid true potato seeds as starting material. From these seeds, seedling tubers can be produced in one field season, to use as starting material for a seed or a ware crop in the following year. For breeding purposes as well as for seed crop and ware crop production, it is essential to produce seedling tubers of high quality. The production of seedling tubers is a new step in the potato production chain; therefore, we investigated the effect of tuber quality traits on plant development and yield. With similar seedling tuber weight, more eyes per seedling tuber led to more stems per plant. This was compensated by a lower number of tubers per stem resulting in an equal total tuber number and weight per plant at the end of the growing season. A higher seedling tuber weight led to a higher soil cover in the field. Hybrid potato plants grown from larger seedling tubers produced a greater total tuber weight per plant than plants grown from smaller tubers, while number of eyes and stems per tuber had no effect on final yield when using equal seedling tuber weight.

Original languageEnglish
JournalPotato Research
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 23 Mar 2024


  • Hybrid potato
  • Number of eyes
  • Seedling tuber quality
  • Tuber weight


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