Common name: native yam
Dioscorea transversa R.Br. APNI*
Description: Herb with annual twining stems 2–4 m long; tuber often deep in the soil, cylindrical and rarely > 10 mm diam.
Leaves with lamina ovate to broad-triangular, usually 5–12 cm long, 2–8 cm wide, apex acuminate, base cordate or rarely hastate, surfaces glabrous, 5–7-veined; petiole 1–9 cm long, usually swollen apically and twisted basally.
Male spikes 1 or 2 per axil, 3–6 cm long. Female racemes 1 or 2 per axil, usually 10–20 cm long. Tepals c. 2 mm long, greenish.
Capsule ± globose, 20–30 mm long, lobes c. 15 mm wide; seeds c. 5 mm long, wing surrounding seed.
Distribution and occurrence: Widespread, chiefly in warmer rainforest and moist sclerophyll forest, north from Stanwell Tops.
NSW subdivisions: NC, CC, NT
Other Australian states: Qld N.T.
Many species are cultivated in the tropics for their edible tubers.
Text by G. J. Harden
Taxon concept: Flora of NSW 4 (1993)
APNI* Provides a link to the Australian Plant Name Index (hosted by the Australian National Botanic Gardens) for comprehensive bibliographic data
***The AVH map option provides a detailed interactive Australia wide distribution map drawn from collections held by all major Australian herbaria participating in the Australian Virtual Herbarium project.