E. Y. Boampong Safo-Kantanka


As a contribution to the data on the characteristics of local Ghanaian cassava germplasm, two hundred and twelve (212) local cassava varieties were selected from farmers’ fields from Wenchi, Dormaa, Nkoranza and Asunafo Districts in the BrongAhafo Region of Ghana in 1998. Accession data including local names of the specimens were recorded. Stem cuttings of varieties were planted at the Regional Agricultural Station, Wenchi for characterization.

Out of the lot, thirty-six (36) accessions were selected for studies into their ethno-botanical information, and the following observations were made.

  1. 1. Features that farmers consider in naming cultivars include: (i) vegetative characters such as the colour of the petiole and stem, and the stature i.e. height of the plant; (ii) the storage root characters: yield, size, shape, skin colour, smoothness and taste (raw or boiled), (iii) the economic value of the cultivar in terms of the income derived from the sale of the fresh or processed root; (iv) the aesthetic value of either the shoot or root tuber.

  1. 2. While revealing the selection criteria of the farmers, this ethno-botanic information can be an indicator to what characteristics a breeder might expect in a variety. It could therefore, assist in the preliminary identification of potentially useful traits that the cultivar may possess, even before subjecting it to scientific study.

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The Editorial Correspondence should be addressed to: The Editor, Globus, Journal of Methodist University College Ghana, P.O. Box DC 940, Dansoman – Accra, Ghana.  ISSN: 2026-5530