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Dioscorea balcanica

Dioscorea balcanica, Photo: Michael Lahanas

Classification System: APG IV

Superregnum: Eukaryota
Regnum: Plantae
Cladus: Angiosperms
Cladus: Monocots
Ordo: Dioscoreales

Familia: Dioscoreaceae
Genus: Dioscorea
Species: Dioscorea balcanica

Dioscorea balcanica Košanin, Oesterr. Bot. Z. 64: 37. 1914.
Native distribution areas:

Continental: Europe
Regional: Southeastern Europe
Albania, Yugoslavia (Montenegro)

References: Brummitt, R.K. 2001. TDWG – World Geographical Scheme for Recording Plant Distributions, 2nd Edition
Primary references

Košanin, N. 1914. Dioscorea balcanica Kos. n. sp. Oesterreichische Botanische Zeitschrift 64(1–2): 37–39. DOI: 10.1007/BF01644279 JSTOR BHL Reference page.


Govaerts, R. et al. 2019. Dioscorea balcanica in World Checklist of Selected Plant Families. The Board of Trustees of the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2019 Oct 22. Reference page.
Euro+Med 2006 onwards: Dioscorea balcanica in Euro+Med PlantBase – the information resource for Euro-Mediterranean plant diversity. Published on the internet. Accessed: 2019 Oct 22.
USDA, ARS, Germplasm Resources Information Network. Dioscorea balcanica in the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN), U.S. Department of Agriculture Agricultural Research Service. Accessed: 08-Apr-12.

Dioscorea balcanica is a herbaceous perennial in the family Dioscoreaceae.


Height 2–5 m. Flowers cup-shaped, arranged in racemes, producing loculicidal capsules.

This species was named in 1914 by Nedeljko Kosanin (1874–1934), manager (1906–1934) of the Jevremovac botanical gardens in Belgrade, Serbia.[2]

Balkans: Montenegro to North Albania (see map).[3] As such it is the only wild Dioscorea species found on the Balkan Peninsula where it is endemic. It is considered an endangered species and has been placed under protection.[4]


Tropicos 2016.
Košanin 1914.
eMonocot 2014.

Šavikin-Fodulović et al 1998.


"Dioscorea balcanica Košanin". Tropicos. Saint Louis, Missouri: Missouri Botanical Garden.
"Dioscorea balcanica Košanin". eMonocot. 2014. Distribution maps
Košanin, Nedelyko (1914). "Dioscorea balcanica". Österreichische Botanische Zeitschrift (in German). 64: 38–39. doi:10.1007/BF01644279. S2CID 29806734.
Šavikin-Fodulović, Katarina; Grubišić, Dragoljub; Ćulafić, Ljubinka; Menković, Nebojša; Ristić, Mihailo (June 1998). "Diosgenin and phytosterols content in five callus lines of Dioscorea balcanica". Plant Science. 135 (1): 63–67. doi:10.1016/S0168-9452(98)00036-3.
"Dioscorea balcanica". Hortipedia. Retrieved 3 February 2016.

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