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 Front Cover
 Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Purpose and methods
 Importance of livesock and its...
 Availability of inputs, marketing...
 Conclusions
 Recommendations






Title: Agro-socioeconomic conditions of three potato producing areas areas in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala
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Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00072243/00001
 Material Information
Title: Agro-socioeconomic conditions of three potato producing areas areas in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala
Alternate Title: Agrosocieconomic conditions of three potato producer areas in Quetzaltenango, Guatemala, Sondeo report
Physical Description: 21 leaves : ; 28 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Instituto de Ciencia y Tecnologâia Agrâicolas (Guatemala)
Publisher: Sector Pâublico Agropecuario y de Alimentaciâon, Instituto de Ciencia y Tecnologâia Agricolas
Place of Publication: Guatemala C.A
Publication Date: 1979
 Subjects
Subject: Potatoes -- Guatemala   ( lcsh )
Potato industry -- Economic aspects -- Guatemala   ( lcsh )
Potato industry -- Social aspects -- Guatemala   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Spatial Coverage: Guatemala
 Notes
General Note: Caption title.
General Note: "May 1979"--Cover.
Funding: Electronic resources created as part of a prototype UF Institutional Repository and Faculty Papers project by the University of Florida.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00072243
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 76875431

Table of Contents
    Front Cover
        Front Cover
    Title Page
        Title Page
    Table of Contents
        Page 1
    Purpose and methods
        Page 2
        Concepcion chiquirichapa, san martin sacatepequez, esperanza and nueva concepcion
            Page 3
            Description of the homogeneous area
                Page 3
            Number of harvests
                Page 4
            Technology used
                Page 5
            Problems and limitations
                Page 6
            Other crops
                Page 6
        San jose pachimacho, tuilcanabaj, talmax, los duraznales, tulpax, telena and siguila
            Page 7
            Description of the homogenous area
                Page 7
            Crops in the area
                Page 8
            Technology used
                Page 8
                Page 9
                Page 10
            Pest and disease control
                Page 11
            Harvest
                Page 11
            Yield
                Page 11
        Varsovia, monrovia, la victoria and san juan ostuncalco
            Page 11
            Description of the area
                Page 11
            Types of crops
                Page 12
            Technology used
                Page 12
            Planting season
                Page 12
            varieties
                Page 12
            Problems and limitations in production of potatoes
                Page 13
            Other crops and the decisions between wheat and potatoes
                Page 14
                Page 15
    Importance of livesock and its relation to the cultivation of potatoes
        Page 16
    Availability of inputs, marketing of potatoes and organzied groups
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
    Conclusions
        Page 19
    Recommendations
        Page 20
        Page 21
        Page 22
        Page 23
Full Text



2iz. 107


AGROSOCIECONOMIC CONDITIONS OF
THREE POTATO PRODUCER AREAS IN
QUETZALTENANGO, GUATEMALA


SONDEO REPORT


Concepcion Chiquirichapa
Guatemala
May 1979










INSTITUTE DE CIENCIA Y TECNOLOGIA AGRICOLAS
Sector Publico Agricola
Ministerio de Agricultura


















AGRO-SOCIOECONOMIC CONDITIONS OF THREE POTATO
PRODUCING AREAS IN QUETZALTENANGO, GUATEMALA
SONDEO REPORT


Guatemala, C.A.


Rural Socioeconomics
Technology Testing Team
Region I
Potato Program










INDEX



I. PURPOSE AND METHODS

II. AGRO-SOCIOECONOMIC CONDITIONS OF THE THREE AREAS

A. Concepcion Chiquirichapa, San Martin
Sacatepequez, Esperanza and
Nueva Concepcion

1. Description of the homogeneous area
2. Aspects of harvests
3. Technology used
4. Problems and limitations
5. Other crops

B. San Jose Pachimacho, Tuilcanabaj, Talmax,
Los Duraznales, Tulpax, Telena and Siguila

1. Description of the homogeneous area
2. Crops in the area
3. Technology

C. Varsovia, Monrovia, la Victoria and San Juan
Ostuncalco

1. Description of the area
S-2.--_ Types of crops
3. Technology used
4. Problems and limitations in production of
potatoes
5. Other crops and the decisions between
wheat and potatoes

III. IMPORTANCE OF LIVESTOCK AND THEIR RELATION TO THE
CULTIVATION OF POTATOES

IV. AVAILABILITY OF PRODUCTS, MARKETING OF POTATOES,
AND ORGANIZED GROUPS

V. CONCLUSIONS


VI. RECOMMENDATIONS


'I *\






Page 2


AGRO-SOCIOECONOMIC CONDITIONS OF THREE POTATO
PRODUCING AREAS OF QUETZALTENANGO
SONDEO REPORT*


-:.PURPOSE AND METHODS

The.potato is a crop which, under good conditions
and with improved technology, produces good earnings for
the-farmer. On the other hand, a relatively large
amount of capital is required for improved technology so
that it is not a product that all farmers can produce on
a commercial scale.

The Potato Program identified a zone around
Concepcion Chiquirichapa and San Martin Sacatepequez
(see map) which specializes in the production of
potatoes. It recognized that there are other
contiguous areas in which many potatoes are produced.
However, it was not known what the agro-socioeconomic
conditions.of these areas were and what factors caused
the differences and similarities among them.

Within ICTA a fast and efficient method for
studying these agro-socioeconomic conditions in a work
zone has been generated. It has been named SONDEO. It
is a form of survey with a multi-disciplinary team
carried out in a period of approximately a week. In
this particular case, three people, (an agronomist, an
agricultural economist and an anthropologist) made a one
day-trip in which they spoke with-five farmers before
the complete team began to function. On the second day,
the complete team was formed and divided into two groups
of four persons each for the first day of interviews
with farmers. After this day of field work, the entire
team got together to exchange impressions and to begin
to formulate hypotheses about the problems, the
limitations, and other agro-socioeconomic conditions of
the zone. Later, four teams of two persons each (one
from Rural Socioeconomies and one from the Potato
Program or the Technology Testing Team of the region)
were formed.

After another half day of interviews with these
teams, the group got together again to continue the
process, to begin to refine ideas, and to exchange
partners for interviews the following day.

*The following personnel from ICTA participated in the
sondeo and are the authors: Jose Aquilino Marroquin and
Rolando Estrada from the Potato Program; Miguel Garcia
and Alcides Obregon from the Technology Testing Team,
and Maria Chinchilla, Christina Gladwin, Peter
Hildebrand and Guillermo Pelaez from Rural
Socioeconomics.






Page 3



On the-forth day, after another half day of
interviews and another meeting, they began to write this
report, having assigned a part to each member of the
team. On the fifth day, the main part of the report was
read and approved,'conclusions drawn, and
recommendations made.

In that way, within a five day period, an 8-person
multi-disciplinary team interviewed approximately 65
farmers from three distinct areas.

In this period of time it is not possible to obtain
precise data, which, therefore, may be subject to some
error. However, it is hoped that a sufficiently good
understanding of the areas is obtained to know why they
are similar and different and to orient the regional
ICTA team. This will facilitate the generation and
promotion of technology in the zone.

This report complements information that is
obtained during the first year of work as part of the
methodology of the Institute; that is, economic
production records, and farm trials.
AGRO-SOCIOECONOMIC CONDITIONS OF THE
THREE AREAS

CONCEPCION CHIQUIRICHAPA, SAN MARTIN SACATEQUEZ,
ESPERANZA AND NUEVA CONCEPCION (Area A)

Description-of the Homogeneous Area- -- ------

This area covers approximately 8,000 ha. Its soils are
sandy, with steep slopes or ravines. The greatest part of its
inhabitants speak the Mam dialect.

Geographically, it is delimited in the following manner:
to the north: Concepcion Chiquirichapa, Cerro los Jazmines,
Esperanza and Nueva Concepcion
to the south: San Jose Las Nubes.
to the east: El Cerro Tuzcanel and Tulplatzan and Tuichim.
to the west: El Rincon, including the town of
San Martin Sacatepequez, the village
of San Martin Chiquito and
surrounding areas.

The area is crossed from north to south by a gravel road
which leads from San Juan Ostuncalco to Colomba and Coatepeque and
is passable throughout the year with a motorized vehicle.

Access to the villages of La Esperanza and La Nueva
Concepcion is by means of the asphalt road which leads from San
Juan Ostuncalco to the department of San Marcos and then to the
potato area by dirt road and, later, by trails or paths only
passable on foot or by pack animal.






Page 3



On the-forth day, after another half day of
interviews and another meeting, they began to write this
report, having assigned a part to each member of the
team. On the fifth day, the main part of the report was
read and approved,'conclusions drawn, and
recommendations made.

In that way, within a five day period, an 8-person
multi-disciplinary team interviewed approximately 65
farmers from three distinct areas.

In this period of time it is not possible to obtain
precise data, which, therefore, may be subject to some
error. However, it is hoped that a sufficiently good
understanding of the areas is obtained to know why they
are similar and different and to orient the regional
ICTA team. This will facilitate the generation and
promotion of technology in the zone.

This report complements information that is
obtained during the first year of work as part of the
methodology of the Institute; that is, economic
production records, and farm trials.
AGRO-SOCIOECONOMIC CONDITIONS OF THE
THREE AREAS

CONCEPCION CHIQUIRICHAPA, SAN MARTIN SACATEQUEZ,
ESPERANZA AND NUEVA CONCEPCION (Area A)

Description-of the Homogeneous Area- -- ------

This area covers approximately 8,000 ha. Its soils are
sandy, with steep slopes or ravines. The greatest part of its
inhabitants speak the Mam dialect.

Geographically, it is delimited in the following manner:
to the north: Concepcion Chiquirichapa, Cerro los Jazmines,
Esperanza and Nueva Concepcion
to the south: San Jose Las Nubes.
to the east: El Cerro Tuzcanel and Tulplatzan and Tuichim.
to the west: El Rincon, including the town of
San Martin Sacatepequez, the village
of San Martin Chiquito and
surrounding areas.

The area is crossed from north to south by a gravel road
which leads from San Juan Ostuncalco to Colomba and Coatepeque and
is passable throughout the year with a motorized vehicle.

Access to the villages of La Esperanza and La Nueva
Concepcion is by means of the asphalt road which leads from San
Juan Ostuncalco to the department of San Marcos and then to the
potato area by dirt road and, later, by trails or paths only
passable on foot or by pack animal.






Page 4


There is a peculiarity that in the villages of La Esperanza
and .Nueva Concepcion, potatoes are principally cultivated by
farmers who live in the villages of Monrovia, Varsovia and La
Victoria, although in Concepcion Chiquirichapa they are cultivated
by farmers who live there, and in San Martin Sacatepequez by
farmers who 'live there and in Concepcion Chiquirichapa. The
farmers from'Concepcion Chiguirichapa shift to different places
within the zone in search of new terrain for planting potatoes and
in that way have spread their technology for the production of
potatoes throughout the zone. On the other hand,the farmers of
San Martin Sacatepequez are accustomed, in large numbers, to
emigrate to the south coast in order to work on the coffee and
cotton plantations.

The predominant crop is potatoes, with small areas
principally near the villages, dedicated to the cultivation of
corn. This corn is utilized for personal consumption and for
feeding livestock, while potatoes are principally used for sale, a
little for seed, and another small part for family consumption.

Most of the farmers have several plots of land, situated in
various places, often at some distance from their residences.

In this area, the crop is principally tended by the men,
helped by their male children. The women only contribute to the
labor of planting by placing the seed and the fertilizer (chemical
and organic, when used) and mainly dedicate themselves to weaving
and taking care of the home.

Number of Harvests

Within the area there are three planting times in the year,
the dates varying in this way: in the south, from the Tuilacan
peak downwards, including the village of El Rincon, they plant
first in October and for the second time in February. Those
interviewed explained that they do not plant in June because of
the large amount of blight ("tizon") due to reverse rains at that
season of the year, and because of a lack of time to tend to them,
as well as the fact that in that month they are accustomed to
plant principally in the higher part, perhaps close to the town of
Concepcion Chiquirichapa.

The area which includes Tuilacan peak toward the north,
through San Martin Sacatepequez, including Tuichin in the east and
the slopes of Tuzcanel and, to the west the villages of La
Esperanza and Nueva Concepcion, plant for the first time in the
month of February and for the second in the month of June.

The land situated more to the north, that is in the town of
Concepcion Chiquirichapa and surrounding places (Tuxipech, El
Aguacate, Xucubue, Tojchelue) do their first planting in March
when they no longer have problems of frost, and second in July.
The July planting covers a small area, depending to a great degree
on the-availability of seed.







Page 5


*For the first two areas indicated, some of the farmers
interviewed indicate the possibility of realizing three plantings
a year, but the majority are accustomed to carrying out the third
planting on separate terrain which is located in the same region
and in the .village of Las Barrancas, preferring to use the product
of this harvest for seed.

Technology Used

The farmers prepare the land by hand hoeing to conserve
moisture in order to be able to plant. This work is done at a
cost of Q.5.00/cuerda.

The variety used is "Loman" and the planting distances most
commonly used are: one cuarta (21 cm) by one cuarta, -one half vara
(2 cuartas) between rows with one cuarta between plants and one
half vara by one half vara. Some farmers are accustomed to
increase the planting distance up to one vara between rows in the
second crop which they do in July due to the fact that the rainy.
season permits heavy development of the foliage. The quantity of
seed utilized in the planting varies in accordance with the size,
but the majority use from 2.5 to 3 qq/cuerda.

Fertilization at planting is a common practice as is the use
of foliar fertilizer. Fertilization at planting has two
alternatives. One is the use of leaf mulch ("broza") mixed with a
chemical fertilizer. If this is the case, the majority used from
S20 to 40 nets of "broza" amd 50 pounds of fertilizer per cuerda.
The formulas commonly used are 16-20-0, 20-20-0 and 15-15-15. The
other alternative is to utilize only chemical fertilizer, in this
case doubling the dose to 1 qq/cuerda, although this depends on
the availability of capital to the farmer.

The attack of blight is a serious problem but farmers control
it with periodic applications of fungicides every 8 days. The
products used are Antracol, Dithane and their respective
adhesives. During the applications of fungicides, they are
accustomed to apply foliar fertilizers and, when there is an
attack of pests, they also mix it with insecticides. In the
second planting, this problem is increased by the greater humidity
and, therefore, the control is increased, both in applications and
in dose.

Weeding is done with a hoe and varies between two and three
times. The cost of this work varies between Q.1.50 and Q.2.00 per
cuerda.

Yield varies widely: good yields varying between 15 and 25
qq/cuerda and the poor ones varying between 8 and 10 qq/cuerda.
The yield is determined by ambient factors such as attack by
pests, disease and precipitation.







Page 6


Problems and Limitations

-Soil erosion: Potatoes are cultivated, to a great degree, on
land which is sloping and sandy and which has no capacity for
retaining moisture.. For this reason the soils are severely
affected by erosion and, at the moment, no technologies exist
which permit any alleviation of this problem.

-Lack of high quality seed.

-Availability of water for spraying since some people transport
water up to more than 1 km.

-Pests: sometimes tuber moths ("palomillas") are a serious
problem, but the farmer knows how to control them.

-Diseases: blight attacks are serious but the farmer knows how to
control it, too.

Other crops

The smallest farmers intercrop potatoes with corn. In this
case, corn is planted at 6 cuartas (1.26m) by 6 cuartas with two
rows of potatoes in between.

Also in some places corn is intercropped with "haba" beans
favaa) and, at times, also with common beans, or peas.

---The corn stalks and leaves areTmportant for animal feed.

Within the area no wheat crop is found because, as indicated
by the farmers interviewed, that crop earns very little and
requires too much work.







Page 6


Problems and Limitations

-Soil erosion: Potatoes are cultivated, to a great degree, on
land which is sloping and sandy and which has no capacity for
retaining moisture.. For this reason the soils are severely
affected by erosion and, at the moment, no technologies exist
which permit any alleviation of this problem.

-Lack of high quality seed.

-Availability of water for spraying since some people transport
water up to more than 1 km.

-Pests: sometimes tuber moths ("palomillas") are a serious
problem, but the farmer knows how to control them.

-Diseases: blight attacks are serious but the farmer knows how to
control it, too.

Other crops

The smallest farmers intercrop potatoes with corn. In this
case, corn is planted at 6 cuartas (1.26m) by 6 cuartas with two
rows of potatoes in between.

Also in some places corn is intercropped with "haba" beans
favaa) and, at times, also with common beans, or peas.

---The corn stalks and leaves areTmportant for animal feed.

Within the area no wheat crop is found because, as indicated
by the farmers interviewed, that crop earns very little and
requires too much work.






Page 7


SAN JOSE PACHIMACHO, TUILCANABAJ, TALMAX, LOS DURAZNALES, TULPAX,
TELENA AND SIGUILA (AREA B)

Description of the homogeneous area

This region includes the following villages: San Jose
Pachimacho of San Mateo; Tuilcanebaj, Talmax, Los Duraznales,
Tulpax and Telena, which belong to Concepcion Chiquirichapa. It
covers approximately 1,500 hectares. Access to the villages
mentioned is from different places and is over dirt roads. All
the villages are reached by these roads that turn off from
different places on the Quetzaltenango to San Marcos highway.
They are passable by vehicle during the entire year although this
becomes more difficult in the rainy season. The distances from
the city of Quetzaltenango to the various villages is not greater
than 16 km.

With the exception of Siguila, which has nearly level terrain
and few forests, the rest of the villages are circled by dense
forests in which abounds the organic material ("broza") which is
utilized as fertilizer by the farmers. Among the species of trees
encountered are alder, oak, pine, cypress, elder and others which
shed many leaves during the year. The elevation in the central
part, in the village of Tuilcanabaj, is 2,900 the same as is
found in the high parts of the village of Telena.

The soils are sandy, predominantly white pumice sand and the
topography is very steep. Some of the soils in use slope up to 35
percent. In the-other villages, the-elevation decreases, the
lowest being in Siguila which is located at 2,450 m.

It is important to mention the difference in crops existing
between the area of Concepcion Chiquirichapa and San Martin
Sacatepequez and the area described here because in this one the
crop which prevails is corn, relegating the potato crop to second
place. Moreover, the potato in corn,.and corn in potato
associations are more important in this area than in Concepcion
Chiquirichapa and San Martin Sacatepequez.

It must also be mentioned that women occupy an important
place in the field work, collaborating with the men in doing
manual labor. This partially originated from the increased cost
of contracted manual labor. In the area of Concepcion
Chiquirichapa, women work very little in the fields.

The cost of manual labor for hoeing is between Q.4.00 and
Q.5.00 per cuerda and the cost of weeding is from Q.1.50 to Q.2.00
for a day's work.






Page 7


SAN JOSE PACHIMACHO, TUILCANABAJ, TALMAX, LOS DURAZNALES, TULPAX,
TELENA AND SIGUILA (AREA B)

Description of the homogeneous area

This region includes the following villages: San Jose
Pachimacho of San Mateo; Tuilcanebaj, Talmax, Los Duraznales,
Tulpax and Telena, which belong to Concepcion Chiquirichapa. It
covers approximately 1,500 hectares. Access to the villages
mentioned is from different places and is over dirt roads. All
the villages are reached by these roads that turn off from
different places on the Quetzaltenango to San Marcos highway.
They are passable by vehicle during the entire year although this
becomes more difficult in the rainy season. The distances from
the city of Quetzaltenango to the various villages is not greater
than 16 km.

With the exception of Siguila, which has nearly level terrain
and few forests, the rest of the villages are circled by dense
forests in which abounds the organic material ("broza") which is
utilized as fertilizer by the farmers. Among the species of trees
encountered are alder, oak, pine, cypress, elder and others which
shed many leaves during the year. The elevation in the central
part, in the village of Tuilcanabaj, is 2,900 the same as is
found in the high parts of the village of Telena.

The soils are sandy, predominantly white pumice sand and the
topography is very steep. Some of the soils in use slope up to 35
percent. In the-other villages, the-elevation decreases, the
lowest being in Siguila which is located at 2,450 m.

It is important to mention the difference in crops existing
between the area of Concepcion Chiquirichapa and San Martin
Sacatepequez and the area described here because in this one the
crop which prevails is corn, relegating the potato crop to second
place. Moreover, the potato in corn,.and corn in potato
associations are more important in this area than in Concepcion
Chiquirichapa and San Martin Sacatepequez.

It must also be mentioned that women occupy an important
place in the field work, collaborating with the men in doing
manual labor. This partially originated from the increased cost
of contracted manual labor. In the area of Concepcion
Chiquirichapa, women work very little in the fields.

The cost of manual labor for hoeing is between Q.4.00 and
Q.5.00 per cuerda and the cost of weeding is from Q.1.50 to Q.2.00
for a day's work.








Page 8


Crops in the Area

'In the part of highest elevation the predominant crop is the
potato. As elevation.decreases, first place is occupied by corn.
In the village of- Siguila the corn field predominates but large
areas of potato and wheat are also cultivated.

Technology used

Preparation of Soils:

For planting first crop potatoes and corn, the preparation
consists of hand hoeing and incorporating the residues from
previous crops. This is done with a hoe in the months of October,
November and December, the year before the planting. This is done
at these times because it creates more moisture in the soil at
planting. Also, soils are prepared in June and July in order to
plant potatoes in the high part and wheat in the low part. This
is in contrast to the area of Concepcion Chiquirichapa where
potatoes are generally planted as the second crop.








Page 8


Crops in the Area

'In the part of highest elevation the predominant crop is the
potato. As elevation.decreases, first place is occupied by corn.
In the village of- Siguila the corn field predominates but large
areas of potato and wheat are also cultivated.

Technology used

Preparation of Soils:

For planting first crop potatoes and corn, the preparation
consists of hand hoeing and incorporating the residues from
previous crops. This is done with a hoe in the months of October,
November and December, the year before the planting. This is done
at these times because it creates more moisture in the soil at
planting. Also, soils are prepared in June and July in order to
plant potatoes in the high part and wheat in the low part. This
is in contrast to the area of Concepcion Chiquirichapa where
potatoes are generally planted as the second crop.







Page 9


Planting.Dates

Corn is normally planted between the first of March and
the 15th of April, depending, in some cases on the residual
moisture of the. -sdil or on-the availability of time of the
farmer.

Potatoes are planted during the last days of February
and the first 15 days of March and sometimes it depends on
the size of the sprout whether the planting is done at the
earlier or later time. When potatoes are planted in the
second season, this is done in the month of July and when
wheat is also planted, that happens in the months of June
and July.

It is important to mention that the planting of second
crop potatoes is of less importance in as much as there is
a limitation on how much seed can be obtained because it is
especially scarce at this time and the farmers of this
region can only buy it-then with difficulty.

Seeds Used

The potato seed used throughout the region is of the
Loman variety which, in many cases, is obtained from
plantings in places up to 16-20 km distant, as occurred in
the villages of Las Barrancas and El Rincon in San Martin
Sacatepequez. __ ----- ------- -

In the corn ("milpa") system the predominant seeds are
local varieties. The same is true for "haba" beans, peas
and common beans.

Wheat varieties are Xelaju and Narino and, in less
quantity, Gloria and locals.

In the potato crop, the amount of seed used depends on
the size, varying from 2 qq/cda., when the seed is medium to
3-5 qq/cda. when the seed is large.

In the corn ("milpa") system, 4 to 6 grains of corn are
put in each hill, plus 1-2 grains of "haba" bean and 1 of
pea or common bean.

For wheat, 15-20 pounds of seed are planted per cuerda.

Most common planting distances

When only potatoes are planted, the distances vary as
follows:

Between Rows Between Plants
0.50 m 0.25m







Page 10


one half vara(0.42m) one cuarta(0,21m)
one half vara(0.42m) one half vara (0.42m)

Plantings are also observed without any order but,
normally, distances are'more or less one cuarta or 0.25m
from one plant .to another.-

When the planting is a corA in potato association, the
variations in distance are: potatoes at one half vara or one
cuarta, in a square and corn at 1.2, 1.6 and even 2.0m in a
square.

If the association is potato in corn, the system varies
in the following form: corn at 1.2 m in a square, potatoes
in double rows with three cuartas between them and from one
to one and a half cuartas from the corn and one cuarta
between plants; corn at 1.0m in a square and potatoes one or
two rows distributed in the middle of the corn rows and one
cuarta between plants.

In a planting of corn ("milpa" system) the distances
vary as follows:

Between Rows Between Hills
1.2m 1.2m
1.2m 1.0m
1.0m 1.0m
1.0m 0.5m
1.0 vara(0.84m) 1.0 vara(0.84m)
1.0 vara(0.84m) 0.5 vara(0.42m)

Fertilization

The levels of fertilization in many cases depend on the
availability of capital to the farmer.

In the cultivation of potatoes, organic materials, as
well as chemicals (granular and foliar), are applied. The
application of organic (leaf mulch or "broza" and manure)
depends also on the opportunity to obtain them and the
quantities vary from 20 to 40 nets/cda. When organic
materials are applied, the average of chemical fertilizers
is 0.50 qq/cda. and when "broza" is not applied, the average
of chemicals is 1 qq/cda. The formulas most commonly
employed are 15-15-15, 20-20-0 and 16-20-0 and these are of
the brands Ammophos and Fertica.

Corn and wheat, also are fertilized with organic
and/or chemicals with the quantities varying according to
the capital available.

Cultural Practices-

During the crop cycle the farmers realize from one to
three weedings with a hoe and these depend on the quantity






Page 11


of rainfall and on the weed growth.

Pest and-Disease Control

In the cultivation. of potatoes, there are frequent
attacks by differen.t.insects like "gusano alambre",
"nochero", "corfador", palomilla" and others which require
control and for which different.products are used, among
them Tamaron and Malathion. In the majority of cases, these
are mixed with fungicides.

The case of fungus diseases is serious in the region
where infections of "Tizon" and "Rizoctonia" are encountered
which require special attention and capital sufficient to
effect the control. In this, fungicides like Antracol and
Dithane are applied, the doses varying and both insecticides
and fungicides being mixed with an adhesive. The interval
between applications varies according to the season. It is
carried out every 8-10 days when it is dry and reduced to
every 4-5 days when it is humid (rainy) with an increase of
both dose and adhesive.

Harvest

In the case of potatoes this is done after the
yellowing of the leaves and is effected by digging with a
hoe.

Corn is harvested by hand with the ears stored in nets
or- sacks.

Wheat is harvested by being cut with sickle, shocked
and subsequently threshed before taking it to the mill.

Yield

The potato crop in this region has yields which vary
according to the management practices. It also depends on
the quantity of fertilizer applied, on the seed used and on
the planting distances employed. When production is low,
this varies between 5 and 8 qq/cda., and when it is high, it
reaches 15 to 20 qq/cda. That is, the yield is lower than
in Area A.

VARSOVIA, MONROVIA, LA VICTORIA, SAN JUAN OSTUNCALCO(Area
C).

Description of the Area

The sondeo was carried out in the zone of Varsovia,
Monrovia, La Victoria and San Juan Ostuncalco; a region
situated in the northwest of the Valle de Quetzaltenango and
which contains approximately 1.500 hectares. The average
size of the farms is from 10 to 20 cuerdas.






Page 11


of rainfall and on the weed growth.

Pest and-Disease Control

In the cultivation. of potatoes, there are frequent
attacks by differen.t.insects like "gusano alambre",
"nochero", "corfador", palomilla" and others which require
control and for which different.products are used, among
them Tamaron and Malathion. In the majority of cases, these
are mixed with fungicides.

The case of fungus diseases is serious in the region
where infections of "Tizon" and "Rizoctonia" are encountered
which require special attention and capital sufficient to
effect the control. In this, fungicides like Antracol and
Dithane are applied, the doses varying and both insecticides
and fungicides being mixed with an adhesive. The interval
between applications varies according to the season. It is
carried out every 8-10 days when it is dry and reduced to
every 4-5 days when it is humid (rainy) with an increase of
both dose and adhesive.

Harvest

In the case of potatoes this is done after the
yellowing of the leaves and is effected by digging with a
hoe.

Corn is harvested by hand with the ears stored in nets
or- sacks.

Wheat is harvested by being cut with sickle, shocked
and subsequently threshed before taking it to the mill.

Yield

The potato crop in this region has yields which vary
according to the management practices. It also depends on
the quantity of fertilizer applied, on the seed used and on
the planting distances employed. When production is low,
this varies between 5 and 8 qq/cda., and when it is high, it
reaches 15 to 20 qq/cda. That is, the yield is lower than
in Area A.

VARSOVIA, MONROVIA, LA VICTORIA, SAN JUAN OSTUNCALCO(Area
C).

Description of the Area

The sondeo was carried out in the zone of Varsovia,
Monrovia, La Victoria and San Juan Ostuncalco; a region
situated in the northwest of the Valle de Quetzaltenango and
which contains approximately 1.500 hectares. The average
size of the farms is from 10 to 20 cuerdas.






Page 11


of rainfall and on the weed growth.

Pest and-Disease Control

In the cultivation. of potatoes, there are frequent
attacks by differen.t.insects like "gusano alambre",
"nochero", "corfador", palomilla" and others which require
control and for which different.products are used, among
them Tamaron and Malathion. In the majority of cases, these
are mixed with fungicides.

The case of fungus diseases is serious in the region
where infections of "Tizon" and "Rizoctonia" are encountered
which require special attention and capital sufficient to
effect the control. In this, fungicides like Antracol and
Dithane are applied, the doses varying and both insecticides
and fungicides being mixed with an adhesive. The interval
between applications varies according to the season. It is
carried out every 8-10 days when it is dry and reduced to
every 4-5 days when it is humid (rainy) with an increase of
both dose and adhesive.

Harvest

In the case of potatoes this is done after the
yellowing of the leaves and is effected by digging with a
hoe.

Corn is harvested by hand with the ears stored in nets
or- sacks.

Wheat is harvested by being cut with sickle, shocked
and subsequently threshed before taking it to the mill.

Yield

The potato crop in this region has yields which vary
according to the management practices. It also depends on
the quantity of fertilizer applied, on the seed used and on
the planting distances employed. When production is low,
this varies between 5 and 8 qq/cda., and when it is high, it
reaches 15 to 20 qq/cda. That is, the yield is lower than
in Area A.

VARSOVIA, MONROVIA, LA VICTORIA, SAN JUAN OSTUNCALCO(Area
C).

Description of the Area

The sondeo was carried out in the zone of Varsovia,
Monrovia, La Victoria and San Juan Ostuncalco; a region
situated in the northwest of the Valle de Quetzaltenango and
which contains approximately 1.500 hectares. The average
size of the farms is from 10 to 20 cuerdas.






Page 11


of rainfall and on the weed growth.

Pest and-Disease Control

In the cultivation. of potatoes, there are frequent
attacks by differen.t.insects like "gusano alambre",
"nochero", "corfador", palomilla" and others which require
control and for which different.products are used, among
them Tamaron and Malathion. In the majority of cases, these
are mixed with fungicides.

The case of fungus diseases is serious in the region
where infections of "Tizon" and "Rizoctonia" are encountered
which require special attention and capital sufficient to
effect the control. In this, fungicides like Antracol and
Dithane are applied, the doses varying and both insecticides
and fungicides being mixed with an adhesive. The interval
between applications varies according to the season. It is
carried out every 8-10 days when it is dry and reduced to
every 4-5 days when it is humid (rainy) with an increase of
both dose and adhesive.

Harvest

In the case of potatoes this is done after the
yellowing of the leaves and is effected by digging with a
hoe.

Corn is harvested by hand with the ears stored in nets
or- sacks.

Wheat is harvested by being cut with sickle, shocked
and subsequently threshed before taking it to the mill.

Yield

The potato crop in this region has yields which vary
according to the management practices. It also depends on
the quantity of fertilizer applied, on the seed used and on
the planting distances employed. When production is low,
this varies between 5 and 8 qq/cda., and when it is high, it
reaches 15 to 20 qq/cda. That is, the yield is lower than
in Area A.

VARSOVIA, MONROVIA, LA VICTORIA, SAN JUAN OSTUNCALCO(Area
C).

Description of the Area

The sondeo was carried out in the zone of Varsovia,
Monrovia, La Victoria and San Juan Ostuncalco; a region
situated in the northwest of the Valle de Quetzaltenango and
which contains approximately 1.500 hectares. The average
size of the farms is from 10 to 20 cuerdas.






Page 11


of rainfall and on the weed growth.

Pest and-Disease Control

In the cultivation. of potatoes, there are frequent
attacks by differen.t.insects like "gusano alambre",
"nochero", "corfador", palomilla" and others which require
control and for which different.products are used, among
them Tamaron and Malathion. In the majority of cases, these
are mixed with fungicides.

The case of fungus diseases is serious in the region
where infections of "Tizon" and "Rizoctonia" are encountered
which require special attention and capital sufficient to
effect the control. In this, fungicides like Antracol and
Dithane are applied, the doses varying and both insecticides
and fungicides being mixed with an adhesive. The interval
between applications varies according to the season. It is
carried out every 8-10 days when it is dry and reduced to
every 4-5 days when it is humid (rainy) with an increase of
both dose and adhesive.

Harvest

In the case of potatoes this is done after the
yellowing of the leaves and is effected by digging with a
hoe.

Corn is harvested by hand with the ears stored in nets
or- sacks.

Wheat is harvested by being cut with sickle, shocked
and subsequently threshed before taking it to the mill.

Yield

The potato crop in this region has yields which vary
according to the management practices. It also depends on
the quantity of fertilizer applied, on the seed used and on
the planting distances employed. When production is low,
this varies between 5 and 8 qq/cda., and when it is high, it
reaches 15 to 20 qq/cda. That is, the yield is lower than
in Area A.

VARSOVIA, MONROVIA, LA VICTORIA, SAN JUAN OSTUNCALCO(Area
C).

Description of the Area

The sondeo was carried out in the zone of Varsovia,
Monrovia, La Victoria and San Juan Ostuncalco; a region
situated in the northwest of the Valle de Quetzaltenango and
which contains approximately 1.500 hectares. The average
size of the farms is from 10 to 20 cuerdas.






Page 12


The predominant soils are quite sandy, flat and
slightly inclined. The elevation of this region is 2,500m.

The majority of the population is indigenous and speaks
Main.

Types of Cropso.:,

The principal crops are corn associated with beans and
"haba", wheat and, on a small scale, potatoes, in
monoculture, and associated with corn. The farmers, who
plant potatoes have been influenced by the seasonal migrants
to Concepcion Chiquirichapa who work as helpers and there
learn the technology for this crop.




Page 13


Technology Used

Preparation of Land--Potatoes

The type of land preparation practiced is hand hoeing
with an azadon (large hoe).

Planting.Season----------

They are accustomed to plant the potatoes at the
beginning of March and some of them are accustomed to a
second planting in July using the same land.

Some do not have time for two harvests of potatoes
because they have to fertilize corn and plant wheat in the
months of June to July.

Varieties

All these farmers use only the Loman variety. The seed
is obtained at Concepcion, San Juan Ostuncalco and some from
the previous harvest.

They usually plant 3 qq/cuerda, distributed in the
following pattern: one cuarta between rows and between
plants. There are also distances of 3 cuartas between rows
and one cuarta between plants.

The method by which they plant is to first put down the
organic material, then a little soil, then the seed, then
some more soil to cover it and, finally, they apply the
chemical fertilizer which they subsequently cover with soil.






Page 12


The predominant soils are quite sandy, flat and
slightly inclined. The elevation of this region is 2,500m.

The majority of the population is indigenous and speaks
Main.

Types of Cropso.:,

The principal crops are corn associated with beans and
"haba", wheat and, on a small scale, potatoes, in
monoculture, and associated with corn. The farmers, who
plant potatoes have been influenced by the seasonal migrants
to Concepcion Chiquirichapa who work as helpers and there
learn the technology for this crop.




Page 13


Technology Used

Preparation of Land--Potatoes

The type of land preparation practiced is hand hoeing
with an azadon (large hoe).

Planting.Season----------

They are accustomed to plant the potatoes at the
beginning of March and some of them are accustomed to a
second planting in July using the same land.

Some do not have time for two harvests of potatoes
because they have to fertilize corn and plant wheat in the
months of June to July.

Varieties

All these farmers use only the Loman variety. The seed
is obtained at Concepcion, San Juan Ostuncalco and some from
the previous harvest.

They usually plant 3 qq/cuerda, distributed in the
following pattern: one cuarta between rows and between
plants. There are also distances of 3 cuartas between rows
and one cuarta between plants.

The method by which they plant is to first put down the
organic material, then a little soil, then the seed, then
some more soil to cover it and, finally, they apply the
chemical fertilizer which they subsequently cover with soil.






Page 12


The predominant soils are quite sandy, flat and
slightly inclined. The elevation of this region is 2,500m.

The majority of the population is indigenous and speaks
Main.

Types of Cropso.:,

The principal crops are corn associated with beans and
"haba", wheat and, on a small scale, potatoes, in
monoculture, and associated with corn. The farmers, who
plant potatoes have been influenced by the seasonal migrants
to Concepcion Chiquirichapa who work as helpers and there
learn the technology for this crop.




Page 13


Technology Used

Preparation of Land--Potatoes

The type of land preparation practiced is hand hoeing
with an azadon (large hoe).

Planting.Season----------

They are accustomed to plant the potatoes at the
beginning of March and some of them are accustomed to a
second planting in July using the same land.

Some do not have time for two harvests of potatoes
because they have to fertilize corn and plant wheat in the
months of June to July.

Varieties

All these farmers use only the Loman variety. The seed
is obtained at Concepcion, San Juan Ostuncalco and some from
the previous harvest.

They usually plant 3 qq/cuerda, distributed in the
following pattern: one cuarta between rows and between
plants. There are also distances of 3 cuartas between rows
and one cuarta between plants.

The method by which they plant is to first put down the
organic material, then a little soil, then the seed, then
some more soil to cover it and, finally, they apply the
chemical fertilizer which they subsequently cover with soil.






Page 12


The predominant soils are quite sandy, flat and
slightly inclined. The elevation of this region is 2,500m.

The majority of the population is indigenous and speaks
Main.

Types of Cropso.:,

The principal crops are corn associated with beans and
"haba", wheat and, on a small scale, potatoes, in
monoculture, and associated with corn. The farmers, who
plant potatoes have been influenced by the seasonal migrants
to Concepcion Chiquirichapa who work as helpers and there
learn the technology for this crop.




Page 13


Technology Used

Preparation of Land--Potatoes

The type of land preparation practiced is hand hoeing
with an azadon (large hoe).

Planting.Season----------

They are accustomed to plant the potatoes at the
beginning of March and some of them are accustomed to a
second planting in July using the same land.

Some do not have time for two harvests of potatoes
because they have to fertilize corn and plant wheat in the
months of June to July.

Varieties

All these farmers use only the Loman variety. The seed
is obtained at Concepcion, San Juan Ostuncalco and some from
the previous harvest.

They usually plant 3 qq/cuerda, distributed in the
following pattern: one cuarta between rows and between
plants. There are also distances of 3 cuartas between rows
and one cuarta between plants.

The method by which they plant is to first put down the
organic material, then a little soil, then the seed, then
some more soil to cover it and, finally, they apply the
chemical fertilizer which they subsequently cover with soil.







Page 13-a



Fertilization

Usually the farmers*apply 1.0 qq per cuerda of 16-20-0
or 15-15-15, fertilizers which they call Fertica or
Ammophos, respectively. Others also use .75qq/cda.

Also, they apply from 25 to 40 nets of "broza"
annually.

If they plant twice a year, the second planting is done
with organic material if there is any available. If not,
they only apply fertilizer.

Cultural Practices

The weeding is done with a hoe, or manually by pulling
the weeds when necessary. They spray every 8 days during
the rainy season, and every 15 days when there is no rain,
using a mixture of Dithane or Antracol together with foliar
fertilizer and an adhesive.

When there is an incidence of pests, they utilize
Volaton in the soil or, perhaps, Folidol or Tamaron on the
foliage.

Harvest
--. -- This-is-carried outin- the montfh-f June,- generally
when the plant begins to yellow.

The yields vary from 5 to 8 qq/cda, when the harvest is
bad and from 12 to 20 qq/cda when the harvest is good. In
general, the yields are lower than in Area A and similar to
those of Area B.

Generally, the yields of the second harvest are lower
than those mentioned and, also, the second planting is used
by some farmers only for seed so they plant a smaller area.

Storage

The only storage used is seed storage in wooden boxes
they keep in their houses. They do not know any method of
storing the potatoes intended for commercial purposes and,
for this reason, they have to sell them at the current
market price.

Problems and Limiting Factors in the Production of Potatoes

Land, Capital, Knowledge:

In the area there is presently no great production of
potatoes. According to the farmers, the principal factors
which limit the production of potatoes in the area are:








Page 14


first, possession of the land; second, lack of knowledge of
the crop; and third, lack of capital.

Many farmers do not plant potatoes due to lack of land
since they use wha' little'land they do own for platning
their corn. It is not possible to rent land because there
is none available in the area. The farmers who have this
problem think that, if they had more land, they would plant
more potatoes.

There is another type of farmer, as in the village of
La Victoria, who plants corn in his own village and, in
addition, plants potatoes in land such as that in La
Esperanza. For these farmers, the capital and the knowledge
of the crop are not limiting factors.

Some of the area's farmers would be able to plant
potatoes since they have capital and land but they do not
know how to plant them and there are others who, although
they have the knowledge of the crop, lack capital or land.
That is, among these three factors: land, capital and
knowledge, the lack of one of them is sufficient to restrict
the production of potatoes.

It is worth noting that the seed utilized by the
farmers of this area is not uniform in regard to sprouting
and also has the problem of mixtures of varieties of plant
-viruses.. ...._.... _

Initially, this bad seed was obtained from markets in
San Juan Ostuncalco and Concepcion and, for this reason, the
poor quality of seed has persisted since they keep it year
after year.

Other Crops and the Decision Between Wheat and Potatoes

Corn

In the area, in contrast to Area A (Concepcion), corn
is the principal crop. The farmer plants corn in
sufficiently large quantities to satisfy the requisites of
family use. The area planted depends on the yields of corn
on the farm and the size of the family.

If he has the use of additional land, the farmer in the
area plants one or two commercial crops: potatoes and
wheat. In general, if a farmer satisfies the requirements
of potatoes (land, knowledge and capital), and has
sufficient land to plant both potatoes and wheat, he will
plant both. Diversification of crops in order to reduce the
risk of loss is the reason for planting both if he can do
so. "If the wheat doesn't come up this year# perhaps the
potatoes will". Also, if the farmer can plant wheat after
potatoes on the same land and in the same year, as some
farmers in Varsovia do, then he will plant both crops:








Page 15


potatoes in February or March, and wheat in July.

If the farmer does not have sufficient land to plant
both crops, he makes the decision between wheat and
potatoes. According to the farmers of the area, the
decision depends principally on 5 factors: knowledge of the
crops, capital available, the time of planting, availability
of manual labor and mechanization (threshers), and
perception of the earnings and the risks associated with
each crop. Obviously, a farmer without knowledge of
potatoes will plant wheat as his commercial crop, and vice
versa.

According to the farmers of the area, potatoes require
double or more the amount of capital required by wheat and,
because of this, have a disadvantage. Wheat requires only
15 lbs/cda. of seed, at a price of Q. 0.17/lb. and only one
arroba/cda. of fertilizer. Some farmers do not have the
capital nor the credit for the production of potatoes and,
because of this, plantwheat.

Without production records, there can be no comparison
between the demands for manual labor for potatoes and wheat.
Some farmers say that potatoes and wheat demand equal
amounts of manual labor. However, some potato growers note
that wheat requires much work and, because of that, do not
plant it. They compare the amount of work necessary after
the harvest. While potatoes are ready to sell after being
harvested,-wheat still has to be threshed.

Some farmers note that there are problems in obtaining
threshers in the area when they need them. If a farmer does
not have a contract with a mill to thresh and sell his
wheat, he has to look for a privately owned thresher. If he
lives far from the highway, he has to carry his wheat a
great distance and, besides, has to await his turn with the
threshing machine. Therefore, many small farmers conclude
that wheat requires much more work. For them, potatoes have
an advantage.

Obviously, two harvests of potatoes produce more
earnings than one harvest of wheat. Therefore, if the
farmer had the knowledge, time and capital to plant two
harvests of potatoes, it would be worth the trouble to plant
potatoes in place of wheat. However, if he compares the
earnings from one harvest of potatoes with those from one
harvest of wheat, perhaps the difference in earnings between
the two crops will be small and not worth the trouble to
take the risk of planting potatoes.

It is clear that potatoes have more risk than wheat.
In the first place, potatoes are more disease prone than
wheat. In the second place, wheat has a fixed price of
Q.I..66. The price of potatoes varies between Q.4.00 and
Q.5.00/qq to Q.10.00/qq from one day to the next.







Page 16


Therefore, many farmers in the area prefer to plant more
wheat than potatoes, or not to plant any potatoes at all.

IMPORTANCE OF LIVESTOCK.AND ITS RELATION TO THE
CULTIVATION OF POTATOES

In this region pigs, chickens, sheep, cows, horses and
mules maybe observed. In the cultivation of potatoes,
horses and mules are the most important for the transport of
products, transport of leaf mulch ("broza"), transport of
the harvest and even the transport of the farmer, himself.

Because there are few possibilities of pasture, the
farmer has to feed his animals with corn stalks and wheat
and oats. For this reason, there is a dependency
relationship between potatoes and these crops since the
animals are important for cultivating potatoes but their
feeding depends on the other crops.

The stalks that they give to the animals are trampled
and the part not eaten-is mixed with their manure in such a
way that a compost is formed which is returned to the land
as a natural fertilizer. This recycling of nutients is
quite common throughout the area with the exception of San
Martin where much of the transport of products and harvests
is by humans since their land is close to town.

It should be noted that not all the farmers have a
-place to-get or buy broza-(natural compost from the forest)-
and that this becomes scarcer year after year. Therefore,
because of the sandy soil of this zone, the importance of
compost made from stalks, straw and manure has greater and
greater importance in the production of potatoes and other
crops in this potato growing zone.

AVAILABILITY OF INPUTS, MARKETING OF POTATOES AND
ORGANIZED GROUPS

The marketing of potatoes is mostly within Guatemala; a
part of the production is exported to other countries of
Central America. This is bought from the producers in the
areas of production. Another part is transported to the
market centers, like Guatemala, by the farmers, themselves.

The high seasonal production in the area studied has
created very noticeable drops in the price of potatoes which
vary from 4 to 6 Quetzales per quintal.

Since this product has not had a price guaranteed by
the government, and because of the lack of an adequate
storage system, the producer is obligated to sell his
product immediately after the harvest, since not doing so
could result in great losses. In other seasons the price
may reach Q.15.00/qq.







Page 16


Therefore, many farmers in the area prefer to plant more
wheat than potatoes, or not to plant any potatoes at all.

IMPORTANCE OF LIVESTOCK.AND ITS RELATION TO THE
CULTIVATION OF POTATOES

In this region pigs, chickens, sheep, cows, horses and
mules maybe observed. In the cultivation of potatoes,
horses and mules are the most important for the transport of
products, transport of leaf mulch ("broza"), transport of
the harvest and even the transport of the farmer, himself.

Because there are few possibilities of pasture, the
farmer has to feed his animals with corn stalks and wheat
and oats. For this reason, there is a dependency
relationship between potatoes and these crops since the
animals are important for cultivating potatoes but their
feeding depends on the other crops.

The stalks that they give to the animals are trampled
and the part not eaten-is mixed with their manure in such a
way that a compost is formed which is returned to the land
as a natural fertilizer. This recycling of nutients is
quite common throughout the area with the exception of San
Martin where much of the transport of products and harvests
is by humans since their land is close to town.

It should be noted that not all the farmers have a
-place to-get or buy broza-(natural compost from the forest)-
and that this becomes scarcer year after year. Therefore,
because of the sandy soil of this zone, the importance of
compost made from stalks, straw and manure has greater and
greater importance in the production of potatoes and other
crops in this potato growing zone.

AVAILABILITY OF INPUTS, MARKETING OF POTATOES AND
ORGANIZED GROUPS

The marketing of potatoes is mostly within Guatemala; a
part of the production is exported to other countries of
Central America. This is bought from the producers in the
areas of production. Another part is transported to the
market centers, like Guatemala, by the farmers, themselves.

The high seasonal production in the area studied has
created very noticeable drops in the price of potatoes which
vary from 4 to 6 Quetzales per quintal.

Since this product has not had a price guaranteed by
the government, and because of the lack of an adequate
storage system, the producer is obligated to sell his
product immediately after the harvest, since not doing so
could result in great losses. In other seasons the price
may reach Q.15.00/qq.







Page 17


Potatoes which can reach the highest price at the
market are those which are destined for seed, at values
which go from Q.7.00 to Q.22.00 depending on the quality of
seed. .

It could be'.detected in the sondeo that the price of
inputs has increased which definitely tends to translate
into an elevation of the costs of production.
Unfortunately, these costs of production, in their increase,
no longer bear any relationship to the selling price of the
potato. This situation creates an imbalance against the
farmer who, at the most, can translate it into a decrease of
the area cultivated due to a lack of profit from the
product.

The inputs are bought by the farmer, some with his own
resources and some with credit obtained from state bank,
Bandesa or from organized cooperatives or groups like
Cooperativos de Ahorro y Credito.

Due to the fact that consumer demand is concentrated in
a single variety, Loman (also identified as "Saloma" and
"Loma"), the farmers have no difficulty in choosing variety.

In the region studied, seed is usually obtained from
plantings in other places which are not exactly the same
locations used for commercial production. This seed is
planted in other, hotter places, ones which are not affected
by frost. ----Additionally, these plantings-take place outside
of the dates on which they are usually accustomed to plant
at a commercial level.

For example, the potato growers from the region studied
plant in places like Las Barrancas and El Rincon in the
months of September and October in order to have seed for
the first and second plantings, which are in February to
March and June to July.

Another method of obtaining seed is to buy it from
known producers in the area. Prices range from Q.7.00 to
Q.22.00 per quintal.

It must be noted that the majority of farmers have
problems with the seed sprouts or shoots which, at times,
are neither vigorous nor uniform. From this they deduce
that this is a problem which is affecting the producers and
they suggest that the potato grower must find some hormonal
product that will correct this difference and accelerate,
invigorate and make uniform the sprouts so that plantings
will not fail.

Likewise, the value of the seed is dependent on its
quality which is reflected in the sprouts and shoots and in
the size of the seed.








S* Page 18


It must be noted that the methods of selecting the seed
are not always entirely appropriate, partly because of its
scarcity and partly because of its poor storage.

In the region studied the storage of commercial
potatoes almost never occurs, sometimes due to a lack of
knowledge of storage techniques on the part of the producer
and sometimes due to his fear of loss.

On the other hand, the storage of seed, when it is
done, is usually done in quite a rustic manner, not
technically well developed and often in unsuitable
environments.

The majority apply fungicides and insecticides in order
to protect the seeds from attack by fungus and pests.

In almost the entire area studied, there were organized
groups in the form of cooperatives, associations and
committees which have succeeded to a great degree in
spreading the technology of potato cultivation.







Page 19


CONCLUSIONS

1. There are three distinct areas and, of these, the area
which includes Concepeion Chiquirichapa and San Martin
Sacatepequez (Area'A) is the most important.

2.. The two areas B and C, although they do not presently
produce a great amount of potatoes, have much potential for
the future.

3. There are three well defined planting seasons in the
zone: February-March, June-July, and October.

4. The potato in corn and corn in potato associations are
common in area B of this study.

5. In areas B and C, wheat and potatoes compete in second
planting, after potatoes have been planted in the first.

6. The technology used for potatoes in monoculture is
common throughout the region.

7. The use of chemical products to combat pests and
diseases is widely practiced.

8. The use of granular and foliar fertilizers is generally
practiced in the area.

9. Organic materials, broza (forest leaf mulch) as well as
manure, are widely used by the farmers.

10. With the exception of seed and organic material, the
other products can be easily obtained in the various
commercial stores of the local market.

11. Loman (Saloma) is the principal variety in the zone.
There is very little use of other varieties.

12. There is a scarcity of high quality seed due to the
lack of an appropriate technology.

13. In areas A and B there are serious erosion problems due
to the lack of soil conservation practices.

14. Due to the fact mentioned above, a large part of the
organic material applied year after year as well as soil and
moisture is lost.

15. Horses and mules are very important in the production
of potatoes throughout the region. Because of the scarcity
of natural pasture, the other crops (corn, wheat, oats), are
used to feed the livestock which creates a dependency
between potatoes and other crops.







Page 20



16. There are no buildings in the region for the storage of
commercial potatoes.

17. There is presently' little information available about
production costs' nd profitability of the crop.

18. There are three factors which limit the production of
potatoes: capital, land, and knowledge. The absence of any
one of them restricts the production of the crop.

19. The potato farmer's risk is primarily due to the price
fluctuation and secondarily to the fluctuation of yields.


RECOMMENDATIONS

1. That distinct trials be designed for each area.

2. In Area A, trials ought to be carried out for potatoes
in monoculture.

3. In areas B and C trials ought to be carried out for
potatoes in association and in monoculture.

4. The trials ought to be planted in accord with the
farmer's planting season.

5. The varieties that are developed or used in trials should
be similar to the cycle and quality of the Loman variety.

6. To utilize organic material in all the trials where the
farmer uses it.

7. To promote the spread of the storage system designed by
ICTA for commercial potatoes.

8. To promote and investigate an appropriate technology for
the management of seed.

9. To promote the production of certified seed.

10. It is of high priority to study the adequate doses of
fertilizers (granular and liquid), using commercial formulas
commonly used in the area.

11. The second priority is to study the use of pest control
products.

12. To promote and investigate conservation practices for
sandy soils in coordination with other institutions and at
the level of organized groups.

13. To immediately initiate economic production records for
potatoes and other crops.







Page 21


14. That the ICTA wheat program test early varieties for
the second planting and wheat with an extra long cycle
(Spring X Winter) for terrain where they only plant one
harvest of wheat per yeak.


MEASUREMENTS USED IN THE ZONE


Manzana
(Mz)


2
7,000 m
16 Cuerdas


Cuerda (Cda.)
Manzana


1/16 part of a


approx. 25 varas X


25 varas


Vara (v)


437.5 m

33 inches
84 cm
4 cuartas


Cuarta
vara


1/4 part of the


21 cm


Quintal (qq)

Quetzal- (Q.)


+ 9 cuerdas

+ 22 cuerdas


100 pounds


one dollar, U.S.


1 acre


1 hectare















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