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Maranta arundinacea

Common namesArrowroot
Ecocrop code2335

BRIEF DESCRIPTION An erect, glabrous herb with a slender stem and ovate oblong leaves 10-15 x 3-10 cm reaching up to 1-1.5 m in height, and with a shallow root system and rhizomes penetrating more deeply in the soil. USES It provides starch used in jellies and pastes and is often part of infant or invalid food because it is highly digestible. The starch is also used as a base for face powders and in certain types of glue. It counteracts insect stings and also has several medicinal uses. A fibrous debris from the rhizomes is fed to cattle. GROWING PERIOD Perennial. Flowers about 90 days after planting and the rhizomes are mature after 300-365 days. Successive crops are usually grown on the same land for 5-6 years. COMMON NAMES Arrowroot, West Indian arrowroot, Arruruz, Cara maco, Sagu, Yuquilla. FURTHER INF Arrowroot is native of South America. It produces better crops in the lowlands, but can be grown at altitudes of up to 1000 m. Yields may within 5-6 years be between 10-35 t/ha of rhizomes, from which 2.5-7.5 t/ha of starch can be obtained. Friable soils are preferred for better tuber development and easy harvesting. Mentioned as a useful agroforestry species.
SOURCES (M. arundinacea L.)
Duke J 1975 pp 21 [PH, RAIN, TEMP]
Chew W 1979 pp 216
Roecklein J 1987 pp 247 [USE, RAIN, TEXT]
Purseglove J 1972 pp 336
Eswaran H 1986 pp 81
Nair P 1980 pp 95-98 [RAIN, TEXT, FER, DRA, LIG, USE]