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Dioscorea wallichii (kruo)

A yam from Southeast Asia, India and China, Dioscorea wallichii has edible tubers that can grow to over one metre long.
Male plant of Dioscorea wallichii (kruo) just before flowers open

Male plant of Dioscorea wallichii (kruo) just before flowers open (showing stem twining direction, leaf shape, glossy upper surface of leaves and pigmented pulvinii).

Species information

Scientific name: 

Dioscorea wallichii Hook.f.

Common name: 

kruo (Chumporn, Thailand), kadat (Burma), gunga (Bangladesh), tunga, tunga sanga, tunga alu, tunga gaddi, tumangai, jugur kanda, cherango, dura sanga, bai-ili (India)

Conservation status: 

Least Concern (LC) according to IUCN Red List criteria.

Habitat: 

Mixed deciduous and evergreen forest.

Key Uses: 

Food.

Known hazards: 

None known.

Taxonomy

Subclass: 
Superorder: 
Lilianae
Order: 
Dioscoreales
Family: 
Dioscoreaceae
Genus: Dioscorea

About this species

Dioscorea wallichii was named by Joseph D. Hooker (1817-1911) in honour of Nathaniel Wallich (1786-1854), a surgeon and botanist who was involved in the development of the Botanic Garden, Calcutta. The tubers of D. wallichii are edible when boiled and peeled but are buried deep under the soil so they can be hard to extract.

Synonym: 

Dioscorea wallichii var. christiei Prain & Burkill, Dioscorea wallichii var. vera Prain & Burkill

Genus: 
Dioscorea

main info

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