Second year Master of Science in Biodiversity Informatics student at the Malawi University of Science and Technology.

Research Topic: Loss of Agrobiodiversity of Underutilised Root and Tuber Crops in Malawi: A study on Livingstone Potato (Plectranthus esculentus)

The Livingstone potato is one of the earliest African crops to be domesticated, and has now become a rarity after a long history of cultivation throughout the African continent and it is regarded as a lost crop and as such, has been classified among the neglected and underutilised crop species (NUCS) (Kujeke et al., 2019).  Countries known to grow this crop include Malawi, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, Nigeria and South Africa. Some of the districts in Malawi where the Livingstone potato is grown as a garden crop are Dedza, Ntcheu and Neno. The loss of the Livingstone potato coupled with the insufficient knowledge of the crop poses a significant problem to researchers and agronomists attempting to revive the crop.

In my research, I am conducting a descriptive-exploratory study that aims to establish agronomical patterns of the Livingstone potato among Malawian farmers as well as establish why it is underproduced.

Sample Districts: Ntcheu and Dedza