Araceae (arum family) Colocasia

Colocasia esculenta taro, elephant ears

Swampy areas in tropical SE Asia

Tropical plant grown primarily for its edible corms, the root vegetables whose many names include taro and eddoe. It is believed to be one of the earliest cultivated plants… All parts of the taro plant contain the acrid compound, calcium oxalate, but this is destroyed by cooking. (Some of the cultivated strains apparently are mild enough that they can be eaten raw.)”

There is a sigle plant growing on the east side of the Carnegie Institute main building.

Name derivation: esculenta – edible in Latin.

About this Entry: John Rawlings authored the main text of this entry ca. 2005.