1 image

Wild Taro

Colocasia esculenta

Wild Taro

Although initial introduction of wild taro dates back to the slave trade, it did not spread extensively until the 20th century when it was promoted by the USDA as a substitute for potatoes.  Wild taro has the ability to out-compete and displace native plant species due to its dense growth patterns.  Today wild taro can still be bought in many garden stores as an ornamental.

Common Name(s):  Wild Taro

Date of Introduction to the United States:  introduced with the slave trade, spread during 20th century

Place of Origin:   Asia

Method of Introduction:  Accidental through shipping traffic and as an ornamental

Problem(s):  Out-competes native species through over-crowding since it has dense growth patterns, also has very little wildlife habitat value

Current Range:  Found throughout southern Louisiana, including the Barataria-Terrebonne system.

Control Methods:  Mechanical and Chemical

Source:  Center for Bioenvironmental Research at Tulane

© BTNEP: Barataria Terrebonne National Est all Rights Reserved