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Re: Xanthosoma

  • Subject: Re: Xanthosoma
  • From: "Julius Boos" <ju-bo@email.msn.com>
  • Date: Thu, 14 Jun 2001 11:22:08 -0500 (CDT)

-----Original Message-----
From: Eduardo Goncalves <edggon@hotmail.com>
To: Multiple recipients of list AROID-L <aroid-l@mobot.org>
Date: Wednesday, June 13, 2001 11:02 AM
Subject: Re: Xanthosoma

Dear Eduardo,

Just so that you can add the information to your notes, the X. 'atrovirens'
in the photo I BELIEVE was grown from rhizomes that, at first glance, could
be mistaken for the rhizomes of X. violacium, and these have a definite
'growing tip', and the outer surface of the rhizome lacks roots, is always
'clean' and smooth, while the rhizomes of the yellow-fleshed species are
VERY different, the outer 'skin' color of these is almost black, many stiff
wire-like roors remains always are attached to the rhizome, which generally
does NOT have a growing tip, the growers must cut the 'head' off the plant
and re-plant it.
There are certainly at LEAST two VERY different species involved here, not
just two clones with different colored 'flesh'.   Even the taste is VERY
different between these two!!!!

I will TRY to start buying and growing the rhizomes when next I see them for
sale here, and anyone who wants to assist may contact me---the rhizomes
themselves should be photographed, notes on color and outer/inner colors and
appearance taken, then when/if they grow, the plants produced should be
photographed.   This way Eduardo can 'link' the rhizomes to the plants.
Good luck w/ your work, Ed, and please keep in touch!



>>Dear Julius,

    As far as I know, X. atrovirens has a strong yellow parenchyma within
the "rhizomes", but some clones are just whitish yellow. I am not so aware
about the uses of this species, mainly in Northern America. An interesting
thing to do is buy these plants in markets, grow them and take pictures. If
pictures are posted in the web, we can try to give them some names. Not only
you, but any other aroid-l member could do it. So we would start to clean
all this Xanthosoma mess.
    Yes, probably the X. sagittifolium complex (including the golden
Xanthosoma) originated in Central America (including the Caribbean Islands).
The problem is that most of the original vegetation has been cleared there,
the ancient cultures have gone and nobody knows if they were wild plants now
in cultivation or if they are cultivars developed by Pre-colombian people.
To make things more complex, most species were described based in cultivated
species, with obscure procedence. To make things even worse, most of the
species described by Schott were represented by type specimens destroyed
during the II World War! Do you want a final consideration? Even if they
were not destroyed, the slimy thing that Xanthosoma specimens turn into when
they are dry would not help much anyway!!!! Maybe their DNA can say
something about their origin, mainly if we compare with some wild collected
relatives. I am considering doing this in near future.

                         Very best wishes,


>Dear Eduardo,
>You are probably correct, but IF there are TWO species being sold here as
>Yautia (or malanga) lilac, both with purplish rhizomes, both that grow to
>look pretty much alike, then what species is the yellow-fleshed tuber,
>called 'yautia amarillo', it has a black-skinned tuber, the inner flesh has
>a lighter cork-like thick layer around the yellow flesh, has a flavor of
>peanut/corn flour when grated and cooked in 'dumplings', or fried as
>'acaras'..   We have been refering this one to X. atrovirens.    I first
>this rhizome being used grated and then folded and sealed as a 'covering'
>for spiced meat, these 'arepas' would be then deep-fried.   The photo was
>a 'Natural History' Mag., street vendor was in the Dominican Republic.
>rhizome has wire-like roots, and is generally sold around Christmas time, a
>seasonally popular food?   It grows leaves that are typically
>Xanthosoma-like, but they have a greyish 'cast', and have more rounded tips
>to the leaves lobes.   I BELIEVE that Lynn Hannon may have a plant of this
>The yellow/gold leaved Xanthosoma sp.that we see here in Florida was said
>have been originally collected somewhere in Central America where it was
>being grown as a food-crop.
>Best wishs,
> >>Dear aroiders,
>     I have checked the marvelous Lester´s site (see the link below) and
>found that there is a small error at the main page. The plant featured
>is Xanthosoma atrovirens, not X. violaceum. Despite the leaves really LOOK
>violaceum (i.e. somewhat purplish), most of the aspect is given by the
>combination of the dark green color (i.e. atro - black, virens - green)
>the wax effect at the surface (that make it appear somewhat blue). However,
>the petioles are green, and if we could see the main ribs below, they would
>appear green, not purplish. Both species are usually confused there in
>U.S.A., because both are usually sold with the same common names. If you
>want to see a real X. violaceum, take a look at Krzysztof´s page in:
>      Compare both pictures and you will never confuse them again.
>      Still on Xanthosomas, I have seen comments about the "Golden"
>Xanthosoma in this list. I have seen it cultivated here in Brazil and I
>have some plants in my own collection (Xanthosoma is my favourite aroid).
>The biggest individuals I have seen are cultivated at the Burle Marx
>collection, and they became less golden with age. I have seen even
>individuals there, but I still couldn´t find out what the hell is this
>plant! I am preparing an article ´bout the cultivated Xanthosoma, maybe to
>be submitted to Aroideana 2002, so I HAVE to discover it someday! By now, I
>think it is a form of the common X. sagittifolium, but I am not 100% sure.
>In fact, I am not even 60% sure... Did someone mention 40% sure?
>                                  Best wishes,
>                                          Eduardo.
> >From: "Scott Hyndman" <hyndman@aroid.org>
> >Reply-To: aroid-l@mobot.org
> >To: Multiple recipients of list AROID-L <aroid-l@mobot.org>
> >Subject: Re: Yautia/Xanthasoma Sprouting
> >Date: Wed, 30 May 2001 12:08:47 -0500 (CDT)
> >
> >Susan,
> >
> >Please take a look at Lest Kallus' and Julius Boos' information at
> >http://www.kallus.com/aroids/ediblearoids.htm as this may be some of what
> >you are interested in.  If it is not, I am happy to help anyone develop
> >such
> >a Web page that you describe, and I am sure that Lester would be happy to
> >add to the excellent informational and image content of his pages.
> >
> >Best regards,  Scott
>Get Your Private, Free E-mail from MSN Hotmail at http://www.hotmail.com.

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