Maranta Arrowroot (M. arundinacea) is a large, perennial herb found in rainforest habitats and is one of the earliest known plants to be domesticated, with evidence of exploitation and cultivation dating back to more than 10,000 years.Arrowroot is a perennial plant growing to a height of between 0.3 m (1 ft) and 1.5 m (5 ft). Twin clusters of small white flowers bloom about 90 days after planting. The plant rarely produces seed and reproduction is typically by planting part of a rhizome with a bud. Rhizomes are ready for harvesting 10–12 months after planting as leaves of the plant begin to wilt and die. The rhizomes are fleshy, cylindrical, and grow from 20 cm (8 in) to 45 cm (18 in) long.
Radio-carbon dating has established that M. arundinacea was one of the first plants domesticated in prehistoric South America. Arrowroot became cultivated in northern South American and Panama between 8200 BCE and 5600 BCE. Some archaeologists believe that arrowroot was first used by Native Americans not as food but as a poultice to extract poison from wounds caused by spears or arrows.Evidence of the use of arrowroot as food has been found dating from 8200 BCE at the San Isidro archaeological site in the upper Cauca River valley of Colombia near the city of Popayán where the starch grains from arrowroot were found on stone grinding tools.
This variety is selected and maintained by Florida seed steward Mark Homesteader of Homestead Heirloom Gardens. You are purchasing a single root like the first photo. NOT HARDY, best in a greenhouse or Zones 8b and above.
Half of all sales from this variety go back to Homestead Heirloom Gardens to support their continued valuable work.