African Plant Database

Dioscorea cochleariapiculata De Wild.
Protologue : Bull. Jard. Bot. État 4: 350 (1914)
Information on the genus : Dioscorea
Status for SA : accepted (present)
Status for TA : accepted (present)
Synonym(s) Heterotypic
=Dioscorea stolzii R. Knuth (1924)
Ecology and distribution
Trop. Afr.
Biology : Vigorous climbing vine to 15 m long, shoots usually annual, left-twining; tuber solitary, 4-lobed, or 4-5 in a cluster, each tuber depressed, globose, 10 cm Ø, near soil surface; plant usually pubescent when young (simple straight hairs, 0,2-0,8 mm long), becoming glabrescent; stem with stout prickles towards base brown, usually in leaf axils; leaves alternate, 3-foliolate; petiole to 27 cm long, pubescent, usually with very few scattered prickles; leaflets with petiolule to 1 cm long, densely pubescent when young; median leaflet obovoid, to 28x29 cm, acutely acuminate, base cuneate or rounded; male inflorescence often present when the plant is leafless, paniculate; ultimate inflorescences 0,6-2,6 cm long, ultimate branches spreading in all directions forming dense cylindrical spikelets to 2,5 cm long on peduncles to 1,5 cm long; capsule narrowly obovate to elliptic, 4,4-5,8x1,9-2,9 cm, glabrescent at maturity; seed with wing on basal side.
Ecology : Sandy lake-shores; sandy ground in Brachystegia woodland; deciduous woodland with Adansonia digitata, Boswellia papyrifera; termite hills; near rock outcrops; persisting in abandoned cultivated places; forest margins; river valleys; edges of watercourses; rarely in heavily disturbed places; prefers well-drained sandy soils; 400-1900 m alt.
  Close to D. dumetorum, but more vigorous and with larger leaves and flowers.
  Tubers eaten as a famine food, but washing and drying necessary to remove toxic alkaloids which are used as arrow poison in Mozambique (Fl. Zambes., l.c.)
South. Afr.
Biol./Eco : perennial-Geophyte, Climber- Ht 2 - 12 m. Alt: 1000 - 1500 m. Distribution: NAM

Bibliography for Southern Africa :
  • List South. African Succ. Pl. : 67 (1997).
More info on :
see under Jstor_African Plant Initiative
see under The International Plant Name Index
see under Flora of Mozambique
see under Flora of Zimbabwe
More information >> ( work in progress )
Record n°11202 modified 2013-10-31
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