Dioscoreaceae R. Brown

  • U. EggliEmail author
  • G. D. Rowley
Living reference work entry
Part of the Illustrated Handbook of Succulent Plants book series (SUCCPLANTS)


A diagnostic description of the family is given with special emphasis on the occurrence of succulence. This is followed by information on the ordinal placement, a selection of important literature, and information on the geographical distribution. A short discussion of the family’s position in the angiosperm phylogeny is supplemened by a summary of its past and present classification in a phylogenetic context. The succulent features present amongst the species of the family are shortly summarized, as is its general economical importance.


  1. Caddick, L. R. [& al. 2002a], Rudall, P. J., Wilkin, P., Hedderson, T. A. J. & Chase, M. W. (2002a) Phylogenetics of Dioscoreales based on combined analyses of morphological and molecular data. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 138: 123–144.
  2. Caddick, L. R. [& al. 2002b], Wilkin, P. J., Rudall, P. J., Hedderson, T. A. J. & Chase, M. W. (2002b) Yams reclassified: A recircumscription of Dioscoreaceae and Dioscoreales. Taxon 51(1): 103–114.
  3. Huber, H. (1998) Dioscoreaceae. In: Kubitzki, K. (ed.): The families and genera of vascular plants; 3: 216–235, ills., key. Berlin (DE) etc.: Springer-Verlag.
  4. Knuth, R. (1924) Dioscoreaceae. In: Engler, A. (ed.): Das Pflanzenreich, IV. 43 (Heft 87). Leipzig (DE): W. Engelmann.
  5. Raz, L. (2017) A review of the fossil record for Dioscoreaceae. Bot. J. Linn. Soc. 183(4): 495–508, ill. Scholar
  6. Stevens, P. F. (2001+) Angiosperm Phylogeny Website, Version 12, July 2012 [and more or less continuously updated since]. St. Louis (US): Missouri Botanical Garden.
  7. Viruel, J. [& al. 2016], Segarra-Moragues, J. G., Raz, L., Forest, F., Wilkin, P., Sanmartín, I. & Catalán, P. (2016) Late Cretaceous—Early Eocene origin of yams (Dioscorea, Dioscoreaceae) in the Laurasian Palaearctic and their subsequent Oligocene—Miocene diversification. J. Biogeogr. 43(4): 750–762.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Sukkulenten-Sammlung Zürich/Grün Stadt ZürichZürichSwitzerland
  2. 2.ReadingUK

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