Elephant's foot yam; Amorphophallus paeoniifoliusthis amazing plant is native to the tropics, from the island of Madagascar through Asia to Polynesia.
It is used in medicine in Papua New Guinea where it grows in dry lands, such as savannahs, at the margins of forests and swamp forests near the coast. The sap from the stem is fermented and used to treat diarrhoea and dysentery and the inside of the stem is cut and eaten raw as an antidote for snakebites.
In the Indian subcontinent it is used in traditional medicine systems, and in Ayurveda it is used for numerous illnesses ranging from minor ailments such as coughs through to improving the quality of sperm and for liver and spleen disorders. As a vegetable the tuber is used to treat piles and haemorrhages.