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close this bookBetter Farming Series 16 - Roots and Tubers (FAO - INADES, 1977, 58 p.)
close this folderTania and taro
View the document(introduction...)
View the documentDescription of the plant
View the documentTania or Xanthosoma
View the documentTaro or cocoyam (Colocasia)
View the documentWhere are tania and taro grown?
Open this folder and view contentsHow to grow tania and taro
View the documentTania and taro in human food

Taro or cocoyam (Colocasia)

Taro never has an aerial stem as is the case with some varieties of tania.

Taro leaves are a lighter green and less shiny than those of tania. They are smaller. The leaf blade is thin and flexible. The leaf-stalk is thin, flexible and has no sheath.

The leaf-stalk is not a continuation of the midrib, as with tania

Taro (Colocasia) leaf

Taro bulber

The taro leaf- stalk is not attached to the edge of the leaf, but near the centre of the leaf blade.

The underground stem varies a lot. It may be round or flat, branching or not branching.

As with tania, the underground stems of taro often produce secondary tubers, but they are smaller. Unlike what happens with tania, it is chiefly the bigger, central tuber that is used for food. It remains tender when ripe, at harvest time.

There are many varieties of taro, as there are of tania.

The tubers may be large or small, with flesh that is yellow, red or white, hard or soft, that becomes floury after cooking, or doughy.