Like all other organisms, Dioscorea villosa L. is involved in numerous symbioses. Fortunately for both the wild yams and its neighbors in the same habitat, most of its interactions are mutualistic; this means that both the wild yam and the fellow organism benefit positively. Wild Yam Photo taken by Jayesh

Within the phylum of fungi, Glomeramycota, there are multiple organisms which create mycorrhizal symbioses with plants. These Glomeramycota fungi live within the roots of plants, including the wild yam, by penetrating the cell wall of the cells. The cell membranes of the plants are not broken; instead, the membranes are used as a wall for diffusion. The two organisms (the fungus and the wild yam in this case) then exchange nutrients the other cannot gather well. The yam can offer sugars formed in photosynthesis while the fungus has an abundant amount of nutrients it receives from the soil.

Dioscorea villosa L. also takes advantage of animals for pollinating other plants. Wild yams need some way to pollinate other plants since all plants in the order Dioscoreales are dioecious (they have different sexes). Wild yams take advantage of flies that land on them by covering them in pollen. Chances are that one of the right flies will land on the right spot of another wild yam flower and end up pollinating it.

Many other important organisms are involved in similar mycorrhizal symbioses with fungi for nutrients including:
tobacco, the stonebreaker plant, and the sweet orange.

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