Dioscorea bulbifera

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9005055
Taxonomy
Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Liliopsida
Order: Dioscoreales
Family: Dioscoreaceae
Genus: Dioscorea
Species: D. bulbifera
Scientific Name
Dioscorea bulbifera
L.
Common Names

air-potato, air potato, air potato, bitter yam, air-potato, air yam

Overview

Appearance
Dioscorea bulbifera is an herbaceous, twining vine that can grow to lengths exceeding 60 ft. (18 m). It invades open areas in the sub-tropical southeastern United States.
Foliage
The leaves are alternate, 8 in. (20.3 cm) long, broadly-heart shaped with prominent veins that resemble greenbrier leaves. The rounded stems are thin and wiry.
Flowers
The vine rarely flowers.
Fruit
The chief means of reproduction are aerial, potato-like tubers (bulbils) located at the leaf axils.
Ecological Threat
Dioscorea bulbifera can form dense masses of vines that cover and kill native vegetation including trees within a variety of habitats such as forest edges, hammocks, and many disturbed areas. It was introduced from Africa for food and medicinal purposes in the early 1900s. It is a common and widespread food crop throughout most tropical regions of the world.

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