Scientific Name:
Oxalis tuberosa Molina
Vernacular Name(s):
oca; Yam

Rhizomatous perennial herb; tubers numerous, elongated, to c. 12 × 4 cm, with reddish pink skin and yellow flesh; scales many, minute and in a long groove, otherwise tubers smooth and shining. Stems numerous, erect, to c. 75 cm tall, hairy, green or purple, succulent, moderately thick. Lvs 3–(4)-foliolate, cauline, white-pilose. Petiole 3–8 cm long, slender; stipules 5–8 mm long, adnate to petiole, membranous. Lamina of leaflets equal, sessile, 10–32 × 8–30 mm, broad-obovate, hairy, the hairs denser beneath; apex emarginate; calli 0. Fls few in cymes; peduncles to 11 cm long, ± hairy; pedicels to 10 cm long, densely hairy. Bracts 4–5 mm long, subulate; calli 0. Sepals 7–10 mm long, lanceolate, glabrous except at base and apex; calli 0. Petals c. 1.5 cm long, obovate, yellow with dark red veins, glabrous. Stamens at 2 levels; filaments dilated below, upper whorl hairy in lower 1/2. Styles of intermediate length between stamen whorls, hairy. Capsule not seen.

[From: Webb et al. (1988) Flora of New Zealand. Volume 4.]


Flowering: Mar.–Apr.