Origin and diversity of Dioscorea rotundata Poir yams. How African peasants' knowledge makes it possible for them to use wild biodiversity in farming

Publication Type:Journal Article
Year of Publication:2010
Authors:Dumont, R., Zoundjihekpon, J., Vernier P.
Journal:Cahiers AgriculturesCahiers AgriculturesCahiers Agricultures
Date Published:Jul-Aug
Type of Article:Article
ISBN Number:1166-7699
Accession Number:WOS:000280836200003
Keywords:Africa, BENIN, biodiversity, CAYENENSIS, COMPLEX, Dioscorea rotundata, DNA, domestication, FARMERS, ignames, MARKERS, NIGERIA, PHYLOGENY

The African species Dioscorea rotundata provides most of the world yam output which comes essentially from West Africa. This species is divided into three agronomic and genetic groups. Each of them comprises a large number of polyclonal cultivars. The early maturing D. rotundata cultivars are sexually functional. They come from on going domestication of different species growing in the wild: D. praehensilis and D. abyssinica species, hybrids between both species and D. rotundata, intercultivar hybrids. Within this genetic material, farmers occasionally find wild phenotypes similar to their cultivated yams and mix them with their own material. This practise increases the genetic diversity of vegetatively propagated D. rotundata and introduces an evolving dimension. Regarding sexually non-functioning cultivars, their origins are still uncertain and we will limit our discussion to a few hypotheses.

Short Title:Cah. Agric.Cah. Agric.
Alternate Journal:Cah. Agric.
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