Maranta arundinacea L.


Erect herb to 2 m tall with thick rhizomes and slender branching stems. Leaves ovate-lanceolate, the blades to 30 cm long, 10 cm wide, narrowed at the tip to a long point, both surfaces green or occasionally with large cream blotches or pale and dark green. Basal leaves with a swelling on the leaf sheath. Flowers white, the clusters often branched.

West Indies (St Vincent, Bermuda), Central America

The rhizomes are used for arrowroot starch which is mainly harvested on the island of St Vincent in the Caribbean.

Source: Spencer, R. (2005). Marantaceae. In: Spencer, R.. Horticultural Flora of South-eastern Australia. Volume 5. Flowering plants. Monocotyledons. The identification of garden and cultivated plants. University of New South Wales Press.

kingdom Plantae
phylum   Tracheophyta
class    Magnoliopsida
superorder     Lilianae
order      Zingiberales
family       Marantaceae
genus        Maranta L.