Order Dioscoreales / Yams Flowering Plants


    Order Dioscoreales

    Order Dioscoreales is a family of flowering plants which most commonly include herbaceous plants. The famous yam Plant order consists of 21 genera and 900 species[1] worldwide.

    They mostly contain herbaceous plants that parasite fungi and are non-photosynthetic (the bat plant). While other plants of the order contain net-veined type leaves. Some members of the plant order contain medicinal compounds (Diosgenin)[2] in the leaves, which are refined on the commercial level.

    The most important plants of this plant order have massive number of medicinal and food properties[3] (Dioscorea quartiniana (Yam), Dioscorea batatas (Chinese yam), Dioscorea rotundata (White yam) and Dioscorea esculanta).

    Dioscoreales Pronunciation

    Dioscoreales Distribution

    The monocotyledonous group of flowering plants is highly distributed in tropical & temperate regions of America and some regions of Australia.

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    Dioscoreales Families

    Dioscoreales Families

    The herbaceous group of the flowering plant comprises 3-5 families[4], out of which only 3 have been recognized by the APG IV Classification system (2016). The three prominent and vital families of Dioscoreales are:

    • Dioscoreaceae/Yam family
    • Burmanniaceae/Blue thread
    • Nartheciaceae/Colic root

    Dioscoreales Characteristics

    Dioscoreales Characteristics

    Advanced Characteristics of Dioscoreales

    Advanced Characteristics Of Dioscoreales

    • Medicinal Applications: Most species in this order are known for their uncountable uses in medicinal purposes. For example, Dioscorea batatas (Chinese yam) are used for many pharmaceutical uses like steroid precursors, treating poor appetite, Chronic diarrhea, Asthma, and uncontrollable urination. Dioscorea quartiniana (Yam) is used for its detoxification purposes. Dioscorea doryophora is used to obtain steroids like dexamethasone and metenolone.
    • Food Applications: Dioscorea quartiniana (Yam) is also a staple food in Africa. Dioscorea esculanta and Dioscorea rotundata (White yam) make edible starch and used in food industries. Dioscorea doryophora is also for food purposes.

    Dioscoreales Families Characteristics

    Dioscoreales contain 3-5 families, but only three families are of great importance worldwide; the remaining two have been merged into the existing three families. The characteristics of the families are as follows:

    Dioscoreaceae Characteristics

    The most abundant and significant family of Dioscoreales is Dioscoreaceae, commonly known as the Yam family, which consists of known 750 species and 9 genera[5] and is highly distributed in temperate and subtropical regions of Australia warm temperate regions.

    Distinctive Feature: The most specific feature of Dioscoreaceae that separates them from other members of the same plant order are:

    Burmanniaceae Characteristics

    This small family of flowering plants commonly named Bluethread includes 17 genera and 163 species.[6] The species Buamanniaceae family is highly distributed in Australian regions.

    Distinctive Feature: The most specific feature of this family that separates them from other members of the same plant order is

    • Totally or partially parasitic on mycorrhizal fungi, seeds are numerous per food, leaves less often absent and solitary flowers, and numerous seeds per fruit (Examples include Burmannia disticha, Thismia rodwayi, and Thismia yorkensis).

    Nartheciaceae Characteristics

    Nartheciaceae is the family of flowering plants commonly known as colic root and asphodel family due to their species mainly includes the herbaceous species with a total number of 5 genera and 35 species[7]. They are distributed in the Northern Hemisphere, Savannahs, and highlands of northern South America.

    Distinctive Feature: The most characteristic feature of this that separates them from other members of the same plant order is:

    • They form perennial herbs from the thick rhizome, produces leafless stem. Members of this family belong to the Liliaceae family (Alteris farinose).

    Dioscoreales Example Species

    Family name: Dioscoreaceae

    • Dioscorea abyssinica (Edible)
    • Dioscorea zingiberensis (Edible and Medicinal).
    • Dioscorea dumetorum (Edible and Medicinal).
    • Dioscorea alata (Edible)
    • Dioscorea cayenensis (Edible)

    Family name: Burmanniaceae

    • Burmannia biflora (Ornamental)
    • Burmannia capitata (Ornamental)
    • Burmannia flava (Ornamental)

    Family name: Nartheciaceae

    • Narthecium ossifragum (Ornamental)
    • Narthecium californicum (Ornamental)
    • Narthecium americanum(Ornamental)[8]

    Cite This Page

    APA7MLA8Chicago
    BioExplorer.net. (2022, June 27). Order Dioscoreales / Yams Flowering Plants. Bio Explorer. https://www.bioexplorer.net/order-dioscoreales/.
    BioExplorer.net. "Order Dioscoreales / Yams Flowering Plants" Bio Explorer, 27 June 2022, https://www.bioexplorer.net/order-dioscoreales/.
    BioExplorer.net. "Order Dioscoreales / Yams Flowering Plants" Bio Explorer, June 27 2022. https://www.bioexplorer.net/order-dioscoreales/.
    Key References
    • [1]“Dioscoreales”. Accessed December 07, 2021. Link.
    • [2]“Dioscoreales – AccessScience from McGraw-Hill Education”. Accessed December 07, 2021. Link.
    • [3]“Dioscorea – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics”. Accessed December 07, 2021. Link.
    • [4]“Tacca – an overview | ScienceDirect Topics”. Accessed December 07, 2021. Link.
    • [5]“Dioscoreaceae | SpringerLink”. Accessed December 07, 2021. Link.
    • [6]“Burmanniaceae – The Plant List”. Accessed December 07, 2021. Link.
    • [7]“Nartheciaceae”. Accessed December 07, 2021. Link.
    • [8]“NatureServe Explorer 2.0”. Accessed December 07, 2021. Link.

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