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Potato - Hollow Heart

Hollow Heart is caused when growing conditions rapidly change.  This causes the tuber to grow rapidly in response to stress causing cell death inside the tuber.

You cannot scout for hollow heart.  It is undetectable until the potatoes are cut open.  If your tubers have hollow heart you will see brown discolorations in the middle of the tuber with crack and hollow area or holes in the middle of the tuber.

If conditions are right any potato cultivar is susceptible to hollow heart.

How to control hollow heart?

  1. Plant seed uniformly
  2. Maintain consistent moisture levels.  Avoid over-irrigation.
Potatoes with hollow heart are still edible, but refrain from eating if the inside is rotten or has a bad odour.  This is likely due to a secondary bacterial infection.

 

 

📷: courtesy of University of Saskatchewan

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