We have one report that this plant is very toxic raw, though no more details are given
. It belongs to a family where most of the members contain calcium oxalate crystals. This substance is toxic fresh and, if eaten, makes the mouth, tongue and throat feel as if hundreds of small needles are digging in to them. However, calcium oxalate is easily broken down either by thoroughly cooking the plant or by fully drying it and, in either of these states, it is safe to eat the plant. People with a tendency to rheumatism, arthritis, gout, kidney stones and hyperacidity should take especial caution if including this plant in their diet
Rhizome - cooked
. The root must be thoroughly boiled or baked, it is acrid when raw
. Very large, it can be up to 30cm in iameter
. In Japan the large brown tubers are peeled, cooked and pounded to extract their starch, which is solidified with dissolved limestone into an edible gel called 'Konnyaku'
. Konnyaku is a type of flour valued for its use in many dietary products
. The flour is valued for its ability to clean the digestive tract without being a laxative
. A nutritional analysis is available
. This root is very high in water and low in calories, so it is being promoted as a diet food in N. America
The plant has insecticidal properties
The root is oxytoxic and sialagogue
. It is used in the treatment of cancer
The flowers are febrifuge
Seed - best sown in a pot in a warm greenhouse as soon as it is ripe and the pot sealed in a plastic bag to retain moisture. It usually germinates in 1 - 8 months at 24°c
. When large enough to handle, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in the greenhouse for at least a couple of years. Plant them out in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts, and give them some protection such as a cloche until they are growing away strongly.
Division of offsets
. These are rarely produced
Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Amorphophallus rivieri. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.
Requires shade and a rich soil in its native habitats, but it probably requires a position with at least moderate sun in Britain.
This species is being increasingly cultivated for its edible tubers in Japan and China The plants are not winter hardy outdoors in Britain but are sometimes grown outdoors in this country as part of a sub-tropical bedding display. It is also said to make a good house plant.
The tuber is harvested in the autumn after top growth has been cut back by frost and it must be kept quite dry and frost-free over winter. It is then potted up in a warm greenhouse in spring ready to be planted out after the last expected frosts. The tubers are planted 15cm deep.
The plant has one enormous leaf and one spadix annually. It requires hand pollination in Britain
. When ripe for pollination, the flowers have a foetid smell to attract carrion flies and midges. This smell disappears once the flower has been pollinated
Problems, pests & diseases
Associations & Interactions
There are no interactions listed for Amorphophallus rivieri. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.
Polycultures & Guilds
There are no polycultures listed which include Amorphophallus rivieri.
This table shows all the data stored for this plant.
Material uses & Functions
Native Climate Zones
Adapted Climate Zones
Native Geographical Range
Root Zone Tendancy
? 1.01.11.2 Stuart. Rev. G. A. Chinese Materia Medica. Taipei. Southern Materials Centre ()
? Bown. D. Encyclopaedia of Herbs and their Uses. Dorling Kindersley, London. ISBN 0-7513-020-31 (1995-00-00)
? 3.03.13.23.3 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
? 4.04.14.24.34.4 [Flora of China] (1994-00-00)
? 5.05.15.25.3 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
? 6.06.16.26.188.8.131.52.7 Duke. J. A. and Ayensu. E. S. Medicinal Plants of China Reference Publications, Inc. ISBN 0-917256-20-4 (1985-00-00)
? 7.07.17.2 Rice. G. (Editor) Growing from Seed. Volume 1. Thompson and Morgan. (1987-00-00)
? 8.08.18.28.184.108.40.206 F. Chittendon. RHS Dictionary of Plants plus Supplement. 1956 Oxford University Press (1951-00-00)
? Genders. R. Scented Flora of the World. Robert Hale. London. ISBN 0-7090-5440-8 (1994-00-00)