Robert W. Freckmann Herbarium


Because of technology changes and personnel changes at UWSP and the Wisconsin State Herbarium, the database of plant species housed at this site was merged with the database from the OLD WisFlora website to create a new Flora of Wisconsin website at Currently we are encouraging all Wisplant viewers to begin using the Flora of Wisconsin website as soon as possible. Wisplants will remain operational through July 13th. After that date, all traffic to Wisplants will be redirected to the Flora of Wisconsin website.

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  Dioscorea villosa L. image
Photographer: Janice Stiefel           

Botanical Illustration

Corey Raimond

Corey Raimond

Derek Anderson

Derek Anderson

Joanne Kline

Marion Sheehan

Christopher Noll

Christopher Noll

Robert W. Freckmann

Walter Lewis
Family Dioscoreaceae
Dioscorea villosa L.
colic-root, wild yam, yam root
Dioscorea: for Dioscorides, ancient Greek naturalist
villosa: Latin for "with hairs"
County distribution map- click for detailed distribution maps.
Detailed Distribution:
Town Range Maps
Google Dot Maps
Status: Native
Plant: perennial, herbaceous vine up to 18' tall; stems twining; roots brownish rhizomes
Flower: white to cream, tiny, 3-6-parted; inflorescence either widely-branched clusters of 1-4 male flowers per node or 2"-4" spikes of female flowers; blooms May-Aug.
Fruit:greenish-gold, 3-winged capsule with very wide, winged seeds
Leaf:broad, heart-shaped base, pointed tip, strong ribs, netted veins
Habitat: moderate moisture; woods, roadsides, river-bottom forests

More Information Natural Communities Herbarium Specimens
All Dioscorea list Ethnobotany Information Google- Images or Text

Flora of North America (off site)
Dioscorea cliffortiana Lam.
Dioscorea glauca Muhl. ex Bartlett
Dioscorea hexaphylla Raf.
Dioscorea hirticaulis Bartlett
Dioscorea lloydiana E.H.L.Krause
Dioscorea longifolia Raf.
Dioscorea megaptera Raf.
Dioscorea paniculata Michx.
Dioscorea paniculata Michx. var. glabrifolia Bartlett
Dioscorea pruinosa Kunth
Dioscorea quaternata J.F.Gmel.
Dioscorea quaternata J.F.Gmel. var. glauca (Muhl. ex Bartlett) Fernald
Dioscorea quaternata J.F.Gmel. var. quaternata
Dioscorea quinata J.F.Gmel.
Dioscorea repanda Raf.
Dioscorea villosa L. f. glabrifolia (Bartlett) Fernald
Dioscorea villosa L. subsp. glabrifolia (Bartlett) S.F.Blake
Dioscorea villosa L. subsp. glauca (Muhl. ex Bartlett) R.Kunth
Dioscorea villosa L. subsp. hirticaulis (Bartlett) R.Kunth
Dioscorea villosa L. subsp. quaternata (J.F.Gmel.) R.Kunth
Dioscorea villosa L. var. glabrifolia (Bartlett) S.F.Blake
Dioscorea villosa L. var. hirticaulis (Bartlett) Ahles
Dioscorea villosa L. var. vera Prain & Burkill
Dioscorea villosa L. var. villosa
Dioscorea waltheri Desf.

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