Arisaema triphyllum


Indian Turnip

Names and Myths

Arisaema Arum blood (European species have red blotched leaves.17)

triphyllum Three-leaved.   

atroubens dark red.

Spathe curves over spadix like a canopied pulpit.2 A member of the Arum family, the name stemming from the Arabic word for fire.

Natural history / Folklore

The color of the Spathe may be dependent on the amount of sunlight Borland suggests that this may be due to the darker colors allowing shaded plants to absorb more of the sun’s  heat.8 Eating the roots raw exposes the eater to the calcium oxalate crystals, the results can burn the flesh. This is reputed to have been a test for the hardiness of young braves.14,17,19 Roots contain calcium oxalate crystals and must be dried for at least 6 months before they can be roasted and ground into a flower. Must be boiled before eating.6

Species List Family Group
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Purple Brown and Green April-July. Flower color variable, paler in sunlight and darker in deep shade. In a given flower cluster either stamens or pistils are abortive. Resulting in male and female flowers on different plants, pollination by gnats.4