by Stephen Mifsud
   25 Jul 2024      ()
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Solanum tuberosum   (Potato)

Solanum tuberosum  (SOLANACEAE.) 
Images for this profile are taken from the Maltese Islands after year 2000.

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Profile Date Dec-2007 (taxon update: none)
Citation for this page Mifsud, S. (2022). Solanum tuberosum - datasheet created on Dec-2007. Retrieved from on 25-Jul-2024

Nomenclature and Basic Information

Species name :

Solanum tuberosumL.
Published in Sp. Pl. 185 (1753)

Synonyms :
(basionym or principal syn.)

Solanum andigenum Juz. & Bukasov
Full list of synonyms : [Euro+Med] [PlantList] [IPNI] [POWO] [Catalogue of Life] []

Plant Family :

Solanaceae Juss. (The Potato Family)
17 species from the Solanaceae family are recorded from the Maltese Islands.

English name(s) :


Maltese name(s) :


Status for Malta :

Cultivated species. Introduced plants cultivated for agricultural or horticultural purposes but sometimes can be occassionaly found as an escapee close to the site of their original cultivation.

Frequency :

Very Common     Common    Frequent     Scarce     Rare    Very rare    Extinct

Growth form :

Raunkiaer lifeform [info]: GEOPHYTE ( bearing underground bulbs, rhizomes, stolons, etc. )
Germination [info]: Dicotyledon

Legal Protection :

Not legally protected till the last update of this website (2/Mar/2022)

Red List (1989) :

Not listed in the Red Data Book of the Maltese Islands

Flowering Time :

April – June

Colour of Flowers:



Toxic, and may lead to irreversible damage or death if consumed in large quantities

Name Derivation :


Planting in rural areas :

Can be planted in rural areas according to ERA Guidelines

Description, Habitat and Distribution
Habitat in Europe: Data will be available in the next update of this website.
Preferred habitat in Malta: Cultivated areas with seldom casual occurrences close to sites of prior cultivation such as in such as field margins or shallow valley beds (from dumped material)
Botanical Description: Sparsely pubescent annual with simple, appressed hairs, with underground stolons bearing terminal tubers; stems 30-80(-150) cm, erect, branched, succulent, winged. Leaves interruptedly imparipinnate, with 3-5(-7) pairs of ovate, acuminate leaflets between which are smaller, unequal, ovate to orbicular leaflets; petiole with auricular or semi-lunate false stipules at base. Cymes many-flowered, 2-4 on axillary to extra-axillary branched peduncles 50-100 mm; pedicels 20-35 mm, usually articulated in middle 1/3. Calyx 5-10 mm; teeth lanceolate, acuminate. Corolla 25-35(-40) mm in diameter, orbicular to pentagonal, white, purple or blue to violet or pinkish. Anthers 6-7 mm, yellow to orange. Berry 20-40 mm in diameter, more or less globose, succulent, greenish to purplish.
Chromosome number: 2n=48
Distributional range: Cultivated for its edible tubers (potatoes) almost throughout Europe.
Native region outside Europe: (South America.)

Distributional map in Europe
and the Mediterranean region (2018):
Occurrences in Europe and the Mediterranean region.
(from Euro+Med Checklist, 2019)
  Country codes  
[aAl cAu(A) aBe cBl aBl(M) cBu cBy cCa Ca(C F G L T) aCo cCt cDa cEs cFe cGa cGe cHe cHo aHs(S) cHu cIt cLa cLe cLi cLS cLt cLu cMd(D M) cMo cNo cPo cRf(C E K S) cSa cSi(S) Sk Sl cSr cSu cTu(A E) cUk(K)]

Links & Further literature (0 papers)

Google Web

Google Images

Google Scholar

Research Gate




Med Checklist

Cat. of Life



World Flora Online

Plants of the World Online

Vienna Virt. Herb.

RBGE Herbarium

KEW Herbarium




Kindly Email if there are papers and publications about local studies or information about this species to be included in the list above.

Species Images (4 images)
   Solanum tuberosum   -   Image Code: SLNTU-0.
   Solanum tuberosum   -   Image Code: SLNTU-1.
   Solanum tuberosum   -   Image Code: SLNTU-2.
   Solanum tuberosum   -   Image Code: SLNTU-3.

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Section B:   Where have you seen this plant on the Maltese Islands?
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Try to be as concise as possible. Examples: Dingli Cliffs (near chapel), Wied Incita (Zebbug side), Triq il-Kbira (Qormi), Barriera ta' Ghajn Abdul (Xlendi), Fields East of Salib tal-gholja (Siggiewi). GPS co-ordinates are also welcomed!
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