Studies on the Varietal Characteristics and Production Improvement of Yam (Dioscorea spp.)
|Keywords:||1999藥用植物之開發與利用研討會論文集;Proceedings of the Symposium on Development and Utilization of Medicinal Plants 1999||Issue Date:||Mar-1999||Publisher:||台中：農業試驗所||Start page/Pages:||1-19||Source:||1999藥用植物之開發與利用研討會論文集:||Abstract:||
Yam (Dioscoreaceae, Dioscorea spp.) is one of the most important root crops in the world due to its high yield potential and nutritional value and can be recommended for table use, processing, and medicinal purposes. Its tubers have been usually used as food or particularly used as a crude drug by people suffered from indigestion, anorexia, and diarrhea for thousand years as recorded in Shennung’s Herbal, the first pharmacology testament of Chinese herbs. Because of many superior characteristics in the flesh of yam tubers like high quality of nutrition, high viscosity, and high contents of protein, amino acids and many mineral elements etc., the tubers possesses many medicinal effects such as healthful for general tonic and nourishing, stomachic, and antidiarrhea etc.
Studies on the development and utilization of yam are currently emphasized by Taiwan Agricultural Research Institute (TART). For many years, the germplasm of different types of yam have been collected, propagated, evaluated and selected in this institute. A total of 10 superior varieties and lines has been selected and extended to many county areas in Taiwan after a series of testing on tuber yield, flesh quality and disease resistance and after a series of comparisons including acclimatization, observation, and preliminary, advanced, and regional yield trials.
In order to increase the production potential of yam, the cultivating method using half plastic pipes is strongly recommended because the tubers produced from this method were so easily harvested and were uniform in shape with high appearance quality and no mechanical damage was found after harvest so that a higher price of the tubers could be expected. Experimental results showed that a higher mean tuber yield of yam could be obtained from the plastic-pipe cultivating method when organic mixed media were filled not only in the pipes but also were additionally mixed in the plot soil.
Yam is particularly suitable to the climate of Taiwan. It can be easily grown in all areas having an altitude lower than 1,000 meter, with vigorous growth and without serious diseases. In order to increase significantly the income of yam farmer, it is necessary to continue to introduce more yam germplasm, to select more superior varieties, to develop more efficient cultivating techniques, to improve tuber quality, and to produce more products obtained from fresh utilization or from processed methods.
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