Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide


Dioscorea cayenensis
(Guinea yam)



Dioscorea cayenensis (Guinea yam)


  • Last modified
  • 26 September 2018
  • Datasheet Type(s)
  • Invasive Species
  • Host Plant
  • Preferred Scientific Name
  • Dioscorea cayenensis
  • Preferred Common Name
  • Guinea yam
  • Taxonomic Tree
  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •   Kingdom: Plantae
  •     Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •       Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •         Class: Monocotyledonae
  • Summary of Invasiveness
  • Dioscorea cayenensis, one of the cultivated tropical species of Dioscorea, is an important staple in Africa, with 2500 cultivars developed. It is a vine mostly known from cultivation, but also reported...

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Preferred Scientific Name

  • Dioscorea cayenensis Lam.

Preferred Common Name

  • Guinea yam

Other Scientific Names

  • Dioscorea aculeata Balb. ex Kunth
  • Dioscorea berteroana Kunth
  • Dioscorea camerunensis R.Knuth
  • Dioscorea moma De Wild.
  • Dioscorea occidentalis R.Knuth
  • Dioscorea pruinosa A.Chev.

International Common Names

  • English: affun yam; attoto yam; bush yam; common yam; cut-and-come-again yam; eight months Guinea yam; eight-month yam; forest yam; Lagos yam; negro yam; twelve months yam; white Guinea yam; yam; yellow Guinea yam; yellow yam
  • Spanish: affoo; ñame amarillo; ñame blanco; ñame de Guinea; ñame guineo blanco
  • French: igname blanc; igname blanche; igname blanche de brousse; igname couche-couche; igname de Cayenne; igname de Guinée; igname jaune; pays-nègre
  • Russian: dioscoreia kaienskaia; zhelti iams
  • Arabic: batata safraa; batata swadaa
  • Chinese: afei zhou shan yao; huang shu yu
  • Portuguese: cará amarelo; cará do Pará; inhame amarelo; inhame da Guiné; ofó
  • German: Cayenne-yamswurzel; gelbe yamsworzel; Guinea-yamswurzel

Local Common Names

  • Benin: ikpen
  • Brazil: inhame da costa
  • Congo: akô
  • Costa Rica: ñame negro
  • Cuba: ñame; ñame de Cuba
  • Denmark: yams
  • Ethiopia: haya
  • Finland: Guineajamssi; keltaguineanjamssi; valkoguineaniamssi
  • Ghana: nkani
  • Guinea: gelbe; ñame; weisser; yam; yamswurzel
  • Italy: igname
  • Jamaica: white yam
  • Japan: Guinea yamu; Kiiro Ginia yamu
  • Mali: tasaka
  • Nigeria: agandan
  • Panama: ñame chomo
  • Puerto Rico: ñame de Guinea blanco; ñame tongo
  • Sierra Leone: mbui
  • Zambia: njambwa

Summary of Invasiveness

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Dioscorea cayenensis, one of the cultivated tropical species of Dioscorea, is an important staple in Africa, with 2500 cultivars developed. It is a vine mostly known from cultivation, but also reported as escaped in the Panama Canal Zone. In Cuba, it is listed as a transformer species with a high possibility of becoming invasive, although there are no further details. The infrequently reported sexual reproduction, the digging of the tubers and its strict environmental requirements limit the spread of this species.

Taxonomic Tree

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  • Domain: Eukaryota
  •     Kingdom: Plantae
  •         Phylum: Spermatophyta
  •             Subphylum: Angiospermae
  •                 Class: Monocotyledonae
  •                     Order: Dioscoreales
  •                         Family: Dioscoreaceae
  •                             Genus: Dioscorea
  •                                 Species: Dioscorea cayenensis

Notes on Taxonomy and Nomenclature

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The Dioscoreaceae family has about nine genera and 650 species distributed in tropical and temperate regions (PROTA, 2017). Although native to Africa, D. cayenensis was described from a cultivated specimen in French Guiana. It is often mentioned as D. cayennensis, but the original and correct species name is D. cayenensis (Lamarck, 1789). The Dioscorea genus was named after the Greek botanist Dioscorides and the epithet refers to Cayenne, the locality in French Guiana where the type was collected. The common name “yam” is derived from the Mandé language word “niam” or from the Temné “enyame”, and was adopted in Portuguese as ynhame, in Spanish as ñame, in French as igname and in English as yam (Iwuagwu et al., 2012). From the synonyms listed for the species, D. aculeata is an illegitimate name and D. pruinosa an invalid name (The Plant List, 2013).

The species delimitation for D. cayenensis has been extensively debated. Hybridisation between wild and cultivated species, and its ongoing domestication, have produced about 2500 cultivars (Girma et al., 2014; PROTA, 2017). Some authors consider D. cayenensis and D. rotundata as part of a species complex, others recognize both as individual species, others treat D. rotundata as a subspecies of D. cayenensis or D. cayenensis as a variety of D. rotundata (Dumont, 1977; Martin and Rhodes, 1978; Terauchi et al., 1992; Girma et al., 2014). According to molecular studies by Sartie et al. (2012), D. cayenensis and D. rotundata are very closely related, suggesting both evolved from the same parentage and became segregated through domestication from wild species of the section Enantiophyllum. This datasheet follows The Plant List (2013), recognising D. rotundata as a subspecies of D. cayenensis.


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Dioecious, exceptionally monoecious, glabrous herb with annual twining stem arising from tuber; tuber usually solitary, cylindrical to irregularly shaped, up to 10(-25) kg in weight, flesh whitish or yellowish, with or without prickly superficial roots, giving rise to one or few annually renewed tubercules; stem up to 12 m long, twining to the right, glabrous, spiny or not. Leaves usually alternate in basal part of stem and opposite in upper part, basal leaves often strongly reduced, simple; stipules absent; petiole 5-12 cm long; blade broadly ovate to suborbicular, 5.5-12 cm x 5-10 cm, broadly cordate at base, acuminate at apex, entire, 5-7-veined. Inflorescence an axillary unisexual spike, male 1-3 together and 4-6 cm long, female 1-2 together and 10-12 cm long. Flowers unisexual, regular, with 6-lobed perianth; male flowers small (1-2 mm in diameter), sessile or shortly pedicelled, with six stamens; female flowers with inferior, 3-celled ovary, styles 3, short. Fruit a capsule wider than long, 2-2.5 cm x 3-3.5 cm, opening by three valves, up to 6-seeded. Seeds 1-1.5 cm x 1-1.5 cm, with large circular wing (PROTA, 2017).

Plant Type

Top of page Herbaceous
Seed propagated
Vegetatively propagated
Vine / climber


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The domestication of some Dioscorea species started about 5000 BC in Africa, in the forest-savanna ecotones (Wrigley, 1960; Ogundiran, 2005). In some African cultures, there are oral traditions about the origin of D. cayenensis and other yams in West Africa (Iwuagwu et al., 2012). D. cayenensis is considered native to Senegal, Ethiopia, Uganda, Gabon, Congo, Cote d’Ivoire, Nigeria, Ghana, Benin, Togo and Cameroon (PROTA, 2017). Although presently known mostly from cultivation, it is considered a semi-wild vine in Ethiopia (Asfaw and Tadesse, 2001). The species is also present in Central and East Africa, the Caribbean, Central America, South America and Oceania (Broome et al., 2017; Missouri Botanical Garden, 2017; PROTA, 2017).

Distribution Table

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The distribution in this summary table is based on all the information available. When several references are cited, they may give conflicting information on the status. Further details may be available for individual references in the Distribution Table Details section which can be selected by going to Generate Report.

Continent/Country/RegionDistributionLast ReportedOriginFirst ReportedInvasiveReferenceNotes


PhilippinesPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroduced Not invasive PROTA, 2017


BeninPresentNativePROTA, 2017
Burkina FasoPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroduced Not invasive Tiama et al., 2016Some cultivars reported to be similar to morphotypes of D. cayenensis-D. rotundata
CameroonPresentNativePROTA, 2017
CongoPresentNativePROTA, 2017
Côte d'IvoirePresentNativePROTA, 2017
EthiopiaPresentNativePROTA, 2017
GabonPresentNativePROTA, 2017
GhanaPresentNativePROTA, 2017
MadagascarPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2017
MaliPresentIntroducedPROTA, 2017
NigeriaPresentNativePROTA, 2017
SenegalPresentNativePROTA, 2017
Sierra LeonePresentIntroducedPROTA, 2017
TogoPresentNativePROTA, 2017
UgandaPresentNativePROTA, 2017
ZambiaPresent, few occurrencesIntroduced Not invasive Wilkin, 2001Infrequently cultivated

Central America and Caribbean

BelizeAbsent, unreliable recordIntroducedShubert, 1966Report of a sterile specimen similar to D. cayenensis
Costa RicaPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2017
CubaPresentIntroducedAcevedo-Rodríguez and Strong, 2012; Oviedo Prieto et al., 2012
DominicaPresentIntroducedBroome et al., 2017
Dominican RepublicPresentIntroducedAcevedo-Rodríguez and Strong, 2012
GrenadaPresentIntroducedBroome et al., 2017; New York Botanical Garden, 2017
GuadeloupePresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroduced1893Gallet et al., 2007; New York Botanical Garden, 2017
HaitiPresentIntroduced1924Acevedo-Rodríguez and Strong, 2012; Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, 2017
JamaicaPresentIntroduced1900Acevedo-Rodríguez and Strong, 2012; New York Botanical Garden, 2017
MartiniquePresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroduced1903New York Botanical Garden, 2017; PROTA, 2017
PanamaPresentIntroducedStandley, 1928; PROTA, 2017Cultivated, escaped around the Canal zone
Puerto RicoPresentIntroducedAcevedo-Rodríguez and Strong, 2005; Acevedo-Rodríguez and Strong, 2012; New York Botanical Garden, 2017; Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History, 2017As cultivated and naturalized, in disturbed or secondary vegetation. Bayamón, Mayagüez, San Sebastián
Saint LuciaPresentIntroducedBroome et al., 2017
Saint Vincent and the GrenadinesPresentIntroducedBroome et al., 2017; New York Botanical Garden, 2017
Trinidad and TobagoPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroduced1909Missouri Botanical Garden, 2017; PROTA, 2017Tobago

South America

BrazilPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedPROTA, 2017
-BahiaPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedFlora do Brasil, 2017
-CearaPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedFlora do Brasil, 2017
-Minas GeraisPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedFlora do Brasil, 2017
-ParaibaPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedFlora do Brasil, 2017
-PernambucoPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedFlora do Brasil, 2017
-Rio de JaneiroPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedFlora do Brasil, 2017
-Sao PauloPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedPROTA, 2017
ColombiaPresentIntroducedUniversidad Nacional de Colombia, 2017
French GuianaPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2017
GuyanaPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2017
SurinamePresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2017
VenezuelaPresentIntroducedMissouri Botanical Garden, 2017Amazonas


New CaledoniaPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedPROTA, 2017
Papua New GuineaPresent only in captivity/cultivationIntroducedPROTA, 2017

History of Introduction and Spread

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D. cayenensis is one of the oldest cultivated species from West Africa (Ogundiran, 2005). It was introduced into tropical America with the slave trade (PROTA, 2017). The species was described by Lamarck in 1789, from a cultivated specimen in French Guiana and, in the 1800s, specimens were already reported from the Caribbean (New York Botanical Garden, 2017). In most countries, it is not known from the wild, although there are reports of it having escaped cultivation (Standley, 1928). It is one of the most commonly cultivated Dioscorea species in Africa and, at a minor scale, in the Americas. Tubers are exported to be consumed by Caribbean emigrants in the USA, United Kingdom and Canada (Martin and Sadik, 1977; Simms and Rankine, 1979). It is reported as recently introduced in Oceania (PROTA, 2017). Because it seldom reproduces sexually and plants are harvested for the tubers, its spread is probably limited (Martin and Sadik, 1977; PROTA, 2017).


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Introduced toIntroduced fromYearReasonIntroduced byEstablished in wild throughReferencesNotes
Natural reproductionContinuous restocking
Grenada 1903 Crop production (pathway cause) Yes No New York Botanical Garden (2017) Collection available at NYBG
Guadeloupe 1893 Crop production (pathway cause) Yes No New York Botanical Garden (2017) Collection available at NYBG
Haiti 1924 Crop production (pathway cause) Yes No Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (2017) Collection available at NMNH
Jamaica 1900 Crop production (pathway cause) Yes No New York Botanical Garden (2017) Collection available at NYBG
Martinique 1903 Crop production (pathway cause) Yes No New York Botanical Garden (2017) Collection available at NYBG
Puerto Rico 1886 Crop production (pathway cause) Yes No Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History (2017) Collection available at NMNH
Saint Vincent and the Grenadines 1890 Crop production (pathway cause) Yes No New York Botanical Garden (2017) Collection available at NYBG
Trinidad and Tobago 1909 Crop production (pathway cause) Yes No Missouri Botanical Garden (2017)

Risk of Introduction

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D. cayenensis is a cultivated perennial vine almost unknown from the wild. It has a low to medium risk of introduction due to its very specific environmental requirements: it grows best between 20-35°C, with a constant annual precipitation of 1500 mm (PROTA, 2017). It also seldom reproduces by seed (PROTA, 2017). Domestication and hybridisation with wild species is still an active process, so in the future it might be possible to have cultivars with less restrictive environmental requirements (Mignouna and Dansi, 2003). 


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D. cayenensis is mainly known from cultivation. Its natural habitat is considered to be wooded savannas, fallows, gallery forests and forests with Scorodophloeus zenkeri, from 200 to 1100 m elevation (African Plant Database, 2017).

Biology and Ecology

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The chromosome numbers reported for D. cayenensis are 2n = 36, 40, 54, 60, 66, 140 (PROTA, 2017). Germplasm collections are stored at various institutions in Africa, France, Puerto Rico and USA, including cryopreservation in Guadeloupe (Gallet et al., 2007; PROTA, 2017; USDA-ARS, 2017). The species is regarded as having high morphological polymorphism and plasticity (Terauchi et al., 1992), with the ongoing domestication and crossing with wild species causing increased genetic diversity (Scarcelli et al., 2006).

Reproductive Biology

Propagation of D. cayenensis is normally by tubers. Flowering is infrequent, and fruit and seed production irregular, with only some cultivars producing seeds. Seeds have a dormancy period of 3-4 months prior to germination. The tuber yield of plants propagated by seed is very small. Tissue culture and seed propagation are used as a research tool and to produce disease-free cultivars (PROTA, 2017).

Physiology and Phenology

D. cayenensis has a growing period of 10-12 months. Tubers are harvested from 280-350 days after planting and can be harvested for up to three years (PROTA, 2017).


The species forms associations with various arbuscular mycorrhizas (Tchabi et al., 2009).

Environmental Requirements

D. cayenensis requires full sun and temperatures between 25-30°C for normal growth, not growing well below 20°C or above 35°C. Evenly distributed rainfall of 1500 mm/year is optimal, but crops can be obtained with as little as 600 mm/year. The species needs well-drained, fertile soils that are free of coarse gravel or stones. Optimum pH is 5.5-6.5 (PROTA, 2017).


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Af - Tropical rainforest climate Tolerated > 60mm precipitation per month
Am - Tropical monsoon climate Preferred Tropical monsoon climate ( < 60mm precipitation driest month but > (100 - [total annual precipitation(mm}/25]))
As - Tropical savanna climate with dry summer Preferred < 60mm precipitation driest month (in summer) and < (100 - [total annual precipitation{mm}/25])
Aw - Tropical wet and dry savanna climate Preferred < 60mm precipitation driest month (in winter) and < (100 - [total annual precipitation{mm}/25])
Cw - Warm temperate climate with dry winter Tolerated Warm temperate climate with dry winter (Warm average temp. > 10°C, Cold average temp. > 0°C, dry winters)

Latitude/Altitude Ranges

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Latitude North (°N)Latitude South (°S)Altitude Lower (m)Altitude Upper (m)
22 33 200 1100

Air Temperature

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Parameter Lower limit Upper limit
Absolute minimum temperature (ºC) 20
Mean annual temperature (ºC) 25 30


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ParameterLower limitUpper limitDescription
Mean annual rainfall600 mm1500 mmmm; lower/upper limits

Soil Tolerances

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Soil drainage

  • free

Soil reaction

  • acid
  • neutral

Soil texture

  • light
  • medium

Natural enemies

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Natural enemyTypeLife stagesSpecificityReferencesBiological control inBiological control on
Aphelenchoides Herbivore not specific
Dasyses rugosella Herbivore to genus
Fusarium Pathogen not specific
Helicotylenchus dihystera Herbivore not specific
Meloidogyne incognita Herbivore not specific
Mesocriconema ornatum Herbivore not specific
Penicillium Pathogen not specific
Pratylenchus coffeae Herbivore not specific
Rhizobium radiobacter Pathogen not specific
Rotylenchulus reniformis Herbivore not specific
Scutellonema bradys Herbivore to genus
Yam mosaic virus Pathogen to genus

Notes on Natural Enemies

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Several pests and diseases are reported to affect the tubers of D. cayenensis: the fungi Penicillium, Fusarium and Botryodiplodia; the insects Heteroligus spp. and Dasyses rugosella; the nematodes Scutellonema bradys, Pratylenchus coffeae, Rotylenchulus reniformis, Helicotylenchus dihystera, Criconemella ornata [Mesocriconema ornatum], Aphelenchoides spp., Tylenchus spp., Tylenchorhynchus spp. and Meloidogyne incognita; the bacteria Agrobacterium tumefaciens [Rhizobium radiobacter]; and the yam mosaic virus (YMV) (Stehlé, 1954; Garrido et al., 2004; Ashamo, 2005; Moura et al., 2005; Ayisah and Gumedzoe, 2012; PROTA, 2017).

Means of Movement and Dispersal

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Intentional Introduction

D. cayenensis has been introduced in tropical regions as a crop species (PROTA, 2017).

Pathway Causes

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CauseNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Breeding and propagationsexual and in vitro propagation for crop production and to create new cultivars Yes Yes PROTA, 2017
Crop productionwidely cultivated species Yes Yes PROTA, 2017
Escape from confinement or garden escapeescaped from cultivation in Panama Yes Standley, 1928
Medicinal useethnobotanical uses in Africa Yes PROTA, 2017
Off-site preservation germplasm collections at various institutions Yes Yes PROTA, 2017; USDA-ARS, 2017
Ornamental purposesornamental in Brazil Yes PROTA, 2017

Pathway Vectors

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VectorNotesLong DistanceLocalReferences
Germplasmgermplasm collections at various institutions Yes Yes PROTA, 2017; USDA-ARS, 2017

Economic Impact

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Pounded D. cayenensis or its flour are often adulterated with cassava products due to the relative low cost of cassava (PROTA, 2017).

Environmental Impact

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The species is listed as a transformer species in Cuba, with a high possibility of becoming invasive in the country, although no details are provided on its impact (Oviedo Prieto et al., 2012).

Social Impact

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The freshly cut tubers of D. cayenensis can cause skin irritation due to the presence of raphides. These are destroyed when the tubers are cooked (PROTA, 2017).

Risk and Impact Factors

Top of page Invasiveness
  • Proved invasive outside its native range
  • Long lived
  • Fast growing
  • Reproduces asexually
  • Has high genetic variability
Impact outcomes
  • Negatively impacts human health
Impact mechanisms
  • Antagonistic (micro-organisms)
  • Hybridization
  • Rapid growth
Likelihood of entry/control
  • Highly likely to be transported internationally deliberately
  • Difficult to identify/detect in the field


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Economic Value

D. cayenensis is the most widely cultivated yam in West Africa. This area accounts for over 95% of its worldwide cultivation, with yearly production estimated at about 30 million tons (PROTA, 2017). The species is grown for its starchy underground tuber, commonly found at rural markets in Africa, and which is a staple food from Cote d'Ivoire to Cameroon (Johnson and Johnson, 1976). Nigeria is the largest yam producer, followed by Ghana, Cote d'Ivoire and Benin (Verter and Becvárová, 2015; PROTA, 2017). In Benin, yam cultivation covers 80% of the total cultivated land (Baco et al., 2007). Small quantities of D. cayenensis tubers are exported from West Africa to Europe and from the Caribbean to North America and Europe (Martin and Sadik, 1977; PROTA, 2017).  

Social Benefit

D. cayenensis is an important staple in various African cultures (Ayensu and Coursey, 1972). It represents about 20% of the caloric intake in Nigeria (Aluko and Koya, 2006). The tubers are boiled, roasted, fried or baked. In Africa, the boiled peeled tuber is pounded to produce a thick dough (pounded yam) and pieces are dried and milled to produce yam flour (PROTA, 2017). Yam flour can be used as a wheat flour substitute to prepare cakes (Melo et al., 2014). It is also the preferred species for preparation of the African traditional dish "fufu" (PROTA, 2017).

In West Africa, the species is important for use in religious and cultural festivities (PROTA, 2017). In Brazil, it is used as an ornamental and in Cuba it is used for Afro-Cuban ritual foods and drinks (Hanelt, 2017). It has some ethnobotanical uses, including treating stomach aches and being a source of minerals and vitamins (PROTA, 2017).

Environmental Services

D. cayenensis is used as animal food or feed (PROTA, 2017).

Uses List

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Animal feed, fodder, forage

  • Fodder/animal feed


  • Ritual uses

Human food and beverage

  • Beverage base
  • Flour/starch
  • Vegetable

Medicinal, pharmaceutical

  • Traditional/folklore


  • Potted plant

Similarities to Other Species/Conditions

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D. cayenensis is similar to D. praehensilis, differing by having thicker male inflorescence axes and lax male flowers (Wilkin, 2001). Although D. rotundata is considered a subspecies of D. cayenensis, some authors believe they both should be recognized as valid species (PROTA, 2017). Two agronomical types are still recognized, the yellow Guinea yam (corresponding to D. cayenensis) and the white Guinea yam (corresponding to D. rotundata) (Martin and Sadik, 1977; PROTA, 2017). The species has many cultivars and hybridizes with other Dioscorea wild species, such as D. praehensilis and D. burkilliana (Ayensu and Coursey, 1972; PROTA, 2017).

Gaps in Knowledge/Research Needs

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More information is needed regarding the possible impacts of D. cayenensis on habitats and native species, to assess the invasiveness of the species. In addition, although several molecular and taxonomic studies have been performed on some African Dioscorea species, information currently available does not resolve the delimitation of some problematic species.


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Acevedo-Rodríguez P, Strong MT, 2012. Catalogue of the seed plants of the West Indies. Smithsonian Contributions to Botany, 98:1-1192. Washington DC, USA: Smithsonian Institution.

Acevedo-Rodríguez, P., Strong, M. T., 2005. Contributions from the United States National Herbarium, Department of Systematic Biology - Botany, National Museum of Natural History, Smithsonian Institution 52, 415 pp.

African Plant Database, 2017. Bases de données. Conservatoire et Jardin botaniques de la Ville de Genève and South African National Biodiversity Institute, Pretoria.

Aluko, O. B., Koya, O. A., 2006. Some engineering properties of yam setts from two species of yams. Journal of Food Engineering, 76(3), 396-401.!&_cdi=5088&view=c&_acct=C000028398&_version=1&_urlVersion=0&_userid=3891418&md5=29996e6ce1c46ad02aa2dff9cc38b2d0 doi: 10.1016/j.jfoodeng.2005.05.051

Ashamo, M. O., 2005. Development of the yam moth, Dasyses rugosella Stainton (Lepidoptera: Tineidae) in different species of yam. Zeitschrift für Pflanzenkrankheiten und Pflanzenschutz, 112(4), 398-404.

Ayensu, E. S., Coursey, D. G., 1972. Guinea yams. The botany, ethnobotany, use and possible future of yams in West Africa. Economic Botany, 26(4), 301-318. doi: 10.1007/BF02860700

Ayisah, K. D., Gumedzoe, Y. M. D., 2012. Genetic diversity among yam mosaic virus (YMV) isolates infecting yam of the complex Dioscorea cayenensis rotundata in Togo. International Journal of Biological and Chemical Sciences, 6(3), 1090-1101.

Baco, M. N., Biaou, G., Lescure, J. P., 2007. Complementarity between geographical and social patterns in the preservation of yam (Dioscorea sp.) diversity in Northern Benin. Economic Botany, 61(4), 385-393. doi: 10.1663/0013-0001(2007)61[385:CBGASP]2.0.CO;2

Broome R, Sabir K, Carrington S, 2017. Plants of the Eastern Caribbean. Online Database. Barbados: University of the West Indies.

Dumont, R., 1977. Morpho-botanical study of the yams Dioscorea rotundata and Dioscorea cayenensis grown in northern Benin. Agronomie Tropicale, 32(3), 225-241.

Flora do Brasil, 2017. Brazilian Flora 2020 under construction. Rio de Janeiro, Brazil: Rio de Janeiro Botanical Garden.

Gallet, S., Gamiette, F., Filloux, D., Engelmann, F., 2007. Cryopreservation of yam germplasm in Guadeloupe (FWI). Advances in Horticultural Science, 21(4), 244-246.

Garrido, M. da S., Coimbra, J. L., Soares, A. C. F., Almeida, N. S. de, Perez, J. O., 2004. Survey of plant nematodes on yam (Dioscorea cayennensis), in the Recôncavo region of Bahia State, Brazil. Nematologia Brasileira, 28(2), 219-221.

Girma, G., Hyma, K. E., Asiedu, R., Mitchell, S. E., Gedil, M., Spillane, C., 2014. Next-generation sequencing based genotyping, cytometry and phenotyping for understanding diversity and evolution of guinea yams. TAG Theoretical and Applied Genetics, 127(8), 1783-1794. doi: 10.1007/s00122-014-2339-2

Hanelt P, 2017. Mansfeld’s World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops. Gatersleben, Germany: Leibniz Institute of Plant Genetics and Crop Plant Research (IPK).

Iwuagwu O, Fagoaga M, Godoy C, 2012. [English title not available]. (La antigüedad del ñame (Género Dioscorea) en la region Igbo, sudeste de Nigeria). Estudios de Asia y Africa, 47(3):677-696

Johnson, E. J., Johnson, T. J., 1976. Economic plants in a rural Nigerian market. Economic Botany, 30(4), 375-381. doi: 10.1007/BF02904659

Lamarck JBPAM, 1789. Encyclopédie méthodique. Botanique, Volume 3. Paris, France and Liège, Belgium: Panckoucke, Plomteux.

Martin, F. W., Rhodes, A. M., 1978. The relationship of Dioscorea cayenensis and D. rotundata. Tropical Agriculture, 55(3), 193-206.

Martin, F. W., Sadik, S., 1977. Tropical yams and their potential. 4. Dioscorea rotundata and Dioscorea cayenensis. In: Agriculture Handbook, United States Department of Agriculture , (No.502) . 36pp.

Melo, A. R., Lima, A. S. O., Branco, C. S. V., Oliveira, L. F., Tolentino, V. R., 2014. Yam meal used in partial replacement in the preparation of cakes. Magistra, 26(CBPFH), 2394-2397.

Mignouna, H. D., Dansi, D., 2003. Yam (Dioscorea ssp.) domestication by the Nago and Fon ethnic groups in Benin. Genetic Resources and Crop Evolution, 50(5), 519-528. doi: 10.1023/A:1023990618128

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Links to Websites

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African Plant Database
Flora do Brasil
Mansfeld’s World Database of Agricultural and Horticultural Crops
New York Botanical Garden Database
Plants of the Eastern Caribbean
Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History Database
Universidad Nacional de Colombia Database


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19/01/17 Original text by:

Jeanine Vélez-Gavilán, Department of Biology, University of Puerto Rico, Mayaguez, Puerto Rico, USA 

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