Amorphophallus campanulatus from Rumphia, sive, Commentationes botanicæ imprimis de plantis Indiæ Orientalis.
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Image ID: SIL-SIL7-215-01_crop
Original Caption: Amorphophallus campanulatus.
Are you hungry? This beautiful flower might not look edible, but its root certainly is when cooked. It is an Elephant Yam, otherwise known as the Whitespot Giant Arum, and it is prescribed in Indian medicinal systems, including Ayurveda and Siddha, for a variety of ailments. It grows wild in different parts of Southeast Asia, including India, Sri Lanka, the Philippines, Malaysia and Indonesia. You might not want to sniff one in the wild, though. The Elephant Yam’s spadix, the sexual reproductive part of the flower, smells of rotting flesh because its pollinators are carrion beetles. Yuck!