Amorphophallus campanulatus


BOTANICAL NAME:- Amorphophallus campanulatus


SINHALA : Kidaran, Wal-kidaran, Raja ala
TAMIL : Karunaikkalangu. 
ENGLISH : Elephant yam.


A herb up to 1.25 m in height. Tubers of corms large, yellow or brown, 20-25 cm in diameter with central depression. Cormes are also formed underground, 5-10 being produced from the main corm or tuber.

LEAVES:- Single leaves large, tripartite, each part subdivided into numerous lobes, 30-80 cm long, with red markings.

FLOWERS:- Spathes 20-25 cm in length, with strong unpleasant odour, borne on a terminal inflorescence produced by the tuber (Jayaweera, 1981).


A native to tropical Asia (Tindall, 1993). It is cultivated in Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Philippines and Pacific Islands.

EDIBLE PARTS : The tubers, young leaves.

FOOD USE: The boiled or roasted corms are eaten as a staple. Occasionally curries are also prepared from corms and leaves. The corm is useful in periods of food scarcity.


Moisture - 78.9 g, 
Energy - 79 kcal, 
Protein - 1.2 g, 
Fats - 0.1 g, 
Carbohydrate -18.4 g, 
Calcium - 50 mg, 
Phosphorus -34 mg, 
Iron - 0.6 mg, 
Carotene - 260 meg, 
Thiamine -60 meg, 
Riboflavin - 70 meg, 
Niacin - 0.7 mg (Gopalan et al., 1971). 

The corm is used externally to relieve pain in acute rheumatism. The corm and roots are good for hemorrhoids (Jayaweera, 1981).


Fertile, deep alluvial soils are preferable. Temperature between 25-35°C and rainfall of 1000-1500 mm are considered suitable for elephant yams. Mostly productive at elevations below 1000 m.


Areas for cultivation - In Jaffna as well as in other locations of the low country wet zone.

Planting season- Planting is generally done with the rains either in the Maha or Yala.

Land preparation- It involves making planting beds or ridges.

Planting and space- Small corms or portions of 3-year old corms are planted on flat beds or ridges at a depth of 10-15 cm at a spacing of 30-100 cm x 30 60 cm, depending on the age and size of the corms. Mulching or shading may be required in the early stages of growth. The corms usually are dug and replanted over a 3-year cycle.

Time to harvest- Trie crop matures in 220-350 days after planting and the corms are excavated when the leaves become sencecent. After 3 years of growth, the corms weigh 7-9 kg each and are considered marketable.

Harvesting- Tubers are lifted carefully without injuring the tubers.


The corms are carefully cleaned and stored in heaps, preferably in well-ventilated sheds. They may lose up 25% of their weight during the first month of storage, but may be successfully stored for 7 months at 10°C