Food Plants International - Plant Fact Sheets Amorphophallus paeoniifolius - Elephant Foot Yam
Edible Portion: Tuber, Roots, Corm, Leaves, Leaf Stalks, Vegetable
A taro family plant but with a very divided leaf. It grows to 0.75-1 m high. It is a herbaceous plant with rough and mottled leaf stalks. It has a straight stem and the leaf is divided into leaflets. The leaves can be 1 m in width. The leaves usually come singly from the ground. The leaf blades are divided into many lobes. The leaflets can be 3-35 cm long and 2-13 cm wide. The flower stalk can be 3-20 cm long. The bract around the flower is bell shaped and fluted. It can be 60 cm across. The edge is curved back and wavy. The flower is dull purple and up to 30 cm across. It can be 70 cm long. The flower gives of a bad smell like rotting meat and this attracts flies. The flower only develops after the leaves have died off. The leaves and corms especially in the wild varieties contain many stinging crystals. Edible kinds have a smooth petiole. It has a large round tuber up to 25 cm across. The large round underground corm produces small corms around the side. These can be 10 cm long. These are usually used for planting.