The potato blight

Binomial name Phytophthora infestans Potato blight is the so-called " fungal " disease which destroyed the Irish potatoes in

The potato blight

Executive power lay in the hands of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland and The potato blight Secretary for Irelandwho were appointed by the British government. Ireland sent members of parliament to the House of Commons of the United Kingdomand Irish representative peers elected 28 of their own number to sit for life in the House of Lords.

Local food prices promptly dropped. Merchants lobbied against the export ban, but Grattan's Parliamentexercising the short lived powers within the Constitution ofoverrode their protests. There was no such The potato blight ban in the s.

The laws had largely been reformed byand the Roman Catholic Relief Act allowed Irish Catholics to again sit in parliament. Landlords and tenants[ edit ] During the 18th century, the "middleman system" for managing landed property was introduced.

The potato blight

Rent collection was left in the hands of the landlords' agents, or middlemen. This assured the landlord of a regular income, and relieved them of direct responsibility, while leaving tenants open to exploitation by the middlemen. At the top of the "social pyramid" was the " ascendancy class ", the English and Anglo-Irish families who owned most of the land, and held more or less unchecked power over their tenants.

Many of these landlords lived in England and were known as absentee landlords. The rent revenue—collected from "impoverished tenants" who were paid minimal wages to raise crops and livestock for export [34] —was mostly sent to England.

They established a Royal Commissionchaired by the Earl of Devonto enquire into the laws regarding the occupation of land. Daniel O'Connell described this commission as "perfectly one-sided", being composed of landlords, with no tenant representation.

It would be impossible adequately to describe the privations which they [the Irish labourer and his family] habitually and silently endure There was no hereditary loyalty, feudal tie, or mitigating tradition of paternalism as existed in England Ireland was a conquered country.

The Earl of Clare observed of landlords that "confiscation is their common title". With the Irish "brooding over their discontent in sullen indignation" in the words of the Earl of Clarethe countryside was largely viewed by landlords as a hostile place in which to live, and absentee ownership was common; some landlords visited their property only once or twice in a lifetime, if ever.

They would split a holding into smaller and smaller parcels so as to increase the amount of rent they could obtain. Tenants could be evicted for reasons such as non-payment of rents which were highor a landlord's decision to raise sheep instead of grain crops.

A cottier paid his rent by working for the landlord. Most tenants had no security of tenure on the land; as tenants "at will", they could be turned out whenever the landlord chose. The only exception to this arrangement was in Ulster where, under a practice known as "tenant right"a tenant was compensated for any improvement they made to their holding.

According to Woodham-Smith, the commission stated that "the superior prosperity and tranquility of Ulster, compared with the rest of Ireland, were due to tenant right". Woodham-Smith writes that, in these circumstances, "industry and enterprise were extinguished and a peasantry created which was one of the most destitute in Europe".

Holdings were so small that no crop other than potatoes would suffice to feed a family. Shortly before the famine the British government reported that poverty was so widespread that one-third of all Irish small holdings could not support their families after paying their rent, except by earnings of seasonal migrant labour in England and Scotland.

Ireland in the 1800s

Two-thirds of those depended on agriculture for their survival, but they rarely received a working wage. They had to work for their landlords in return for the patch of land they needed to grow enough food for their own families.

This was the system which forced Ireland and its peasantry into monoculturesince only the potato could be grown in sufficient quantity.Potato blight affected tubers (the actual potato) by can be told by dark patches on the skin.

Cutting the potato in half will reveal brownish rot spreading down from the skin. Eventually the potatoes almost liquefy, becoming jelly like and give off a distinctive stench. The plant disease that led to the Irish potato famine, late blight, is a widespread disease of the Solanaceae family.

Often called potato blight or tomato blight because it particularly affects these crops, it can destroy your entire haul of potatoes in as little as ten days.

The History Place - Irish Potato Famine: The Blight Begins Executive power lay in the hands of the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland and Chief Secretary for Irelandwho were appointed by the British government. Ireland sent members of parliament to the House of Commons of the United Kingdomand Irish representative peers elected 28 of their own number to sit for life in the House of Lords.
Cause of Potato Blight English and Anglo-Irish families owned most of the land, and most Irish Catholics were relegated to work as tenant farmers forced to pay rent to the landowners. Great Hunger Begins When the crops began to fail inas a result of P.

Because nothing says fun like a college freshman's fifth Irish Car Bomb, the pseudo Gaelic pub proliferates across the north side like potato blight. — Mike Sula, Chicago Reader, "The eratz Irish pub is the starkest failure of originality in Chicago drinking culture," 21 Dec.

These example. Great Famine, also called Irish Potato Famine, Great Irish Famine, or Famine of –49, famine that occurred in Ireland in –49 when the potato crop failed in successive years. The crop failures were caused by late blight, a disease that destroys both the leaves .

One idea to guarantee a potato haul ahead of the blight period is to plant potato growing bags of spuds under cover in early spring, taking care to protect against frost, before moving them outside by . The Blight Begins The Famine began quite mysteriously in September as leaves on potato plants suddenly turned black and curled, then rotted, seemingly the result of .

Phytophthora infestans - Wikipedia