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Dioscorea bulbifera

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Dioscorea bulbifera at Kadavoor.jpg

Dioscorea bulbifera is a glabrous-leafed, non-spiny, perennial climbing plant. These stems scramble over the ground, or twine into the surrounding vegetation. The stems twine left-handed and produce aerial axillary bulbils.


Diarrhoea, Haemorrhoids, Fever, Purulent ophthalmia, Snakebite.


Dioscorea bulbifera can be used in Food. Underground and aerial tubers are eaten raw, roasted, boiled or cooked as vegetable. Before the use they are washed thoroughly in running water[1].

Parts Used

Aerial tuber, Root.

Chemical Composition

It contains the following chemical constituents - Beta-sitosterol, Daucosterol, Dioscin, Diosgenin, Pennogenin, Stigmasterol, Catechin, Myricetin, Quercetin, Kaempferol, Isorhamnetin.[2]

Common names

Language Common name
Kannada Heggenasu, Handigedde
Hindi Jamin Kand
Malayalam NA
Tamil Ponnu Kilangu, Kaivalli kodi
Telugu Chedu Padddumpa
Marathi NA
Gujarathi NA
Punjabi NA
Kashmiri NA
Sanskrit Varahi kanda
English Air potato, Yam


Reference: Dravya - Substance, Rasa - Taste, Guna - Qualities, Veerya - Potency, Vipaka - Post-digesion effect, Karma - Pharmacological activity, Prabhava - Therepeutics.








Nutritional components

Dioscorea bulbifera Contains the Following nutritional components like - Vitamin-C; Niacin (B3), Ribofl avin, Thiamine (B1); diosgenin, lucein, neoxanthin, auroxanthin and cyrptoxanthin; Calcium, Iron, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium, Sodium[1].


Perennial climber



Kind Shape Feature



Type Size Color and composition Stamen More information
Flowering from July to October


Type Size Mass Appearance Seeds More information
Fruiting from July to October

Other features

List of Ayurvedic medicine in which the herb is used

Where to get the saplings

Mode of Propagation

Seeds, Cuttings of tubers.

Cultivation Details

A plant of the moist, lowland tropics. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 20 - 30°c, but can tolerate 12 - 38°c[4]. Dioscorea bulbifera is available through July-March[1].

Commonly seen growing in areas


Photo Gallery


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 "Forest food for Northern region of Western Ghats" by Dr. Mandar N. Datar and Dr. Anuradha S. Upadhye, Page No.68, Published by Maharashtra Association for the Cultivation of Science (MACS) Agharkar Research Institute, Gopal Ganesh Agarkar Road, Pune
  2. Journal paper - South African Journal of Botany - Dioscorea bulbifera L. (Dioscoreaceae): A review of its ethnobotany, pharmacology and conservation needs
  3. [Morphology]
  4. Cultivation

External Links