Previous plant

Main page

Next plant


 Dioscorea mexicana
Author:   Michael Joseph François Scheidweiler 1837
Family:  Dioscoreaceae
Habitat:  Mexico, El Salvador, Panama
Soil:  Mix
Water:  Medium-Maximum
Sun:  Medium
Thickness:  50 centimetres
Height:  6 meters
Flower:  Greenish/Dark Purple
Reproduction:  Seeds/Cuttings
Common Names:  Colic Root. Chinese Yam
Synonyms:  Dioscorea macrostachya Benth. 1841. Dioscorea deppei Schiede ex Schltdl. 1843. Dioscorea macrophylla Schltdl. 1843. Dioscorea tuerckheimii R. Knuth  1917. Dioscorea deamii Matuda, 1953. Dioscorea macrostachya var. sessiliflora Uline 1896 = Dioscorea mexicana var. sessiliflora (Uline) Matuda, 1953.
Got it from:  Copenhagen
Year:  2002

Covering a three meter high window at my lab.

The strange back-ward-growing of  the leafs.
Might be good at climbing.

My plant is male, and this is it's flowers.
The female flowers are real close to those of Dioscorea elephantipes.

The roots are always soaked in water, when the plant s in growth - and it loves it!

Cluster of male flowers.

Cluster of male flowers.


This member of the Dioscoreaceae family was described by Michael Joseph François Scheidweiler in1837. It's the only member of this family from Mexico, El Salvador and Panama. Prefers a well-drained soil, some to lots of water and moderate sun. The caudex forms out of the ground, and gets 50 cm in diameter. The few vines reaches six meters. It seems like the leaves grows back-wards. Both male and female flowers are greenish and dark purple. It's possible to make cuttings.

The caudex must be kept in shade. It's dioecious; either male or female plant.

This is kind of a winter grower, but will do fine a summer as well.

In 2008, the old stem did not die, it just got a new stem next to it.
Later, the old stem got new side branches first, then the new. In autumn; a new main stem. Ended up covering the window entirely! Consuming ½ litre water every day, putting on some good growth to the caudex:

The big leaf, size as a hand.

Male flowers.

Clusters of male flowers.

Male flower.

Kingdom SubKingdom SuperDivision Division SubDivision Class SubClass SuperOrder Order Family Genus Species
PLANTAE Tracheophyta Spermatophytes Magnoliophyta Magnoliophytina Liliopsida Liliidae


Dioscoreales Dioscoreaceae Dioscorea mexicana