Manihot esculenta

Crantz

Inst. Rei Herb. 1: 167. 1766.

Introduced
Treatment appears in FNA Volume 12. Treatment on page 194. Mentioned on page 193.

Shrubs, 1–4 m. Roots thickened. Stems erect, terete when young; nodes conspicuously swollen; leaf and stipule-scars elevated, especially on older stems. Leaves persistent; stipules lanceolate, entire; petiole 3–20 cm; blade basally attached, usually 3–10-lobed, sometimes unlobed, lobes without secondary lobes, median lobe 5–18 cm, margins neither thickened nor revolute, entire to ± repand, apex acuminate, surfaces glabrous or hairy, abaxial finely reticulate. Inflorescences axillary, panicles, 2–10 cm. Pedicels: staminate 2–4 mm; pistillate 20 mm in fruit, straight. Staminate flowers: calyx campanulate, 10–15 mm, lobes erect or spreading; stamens 10. Capsules 1.5 cm, usually winged. Seeds subglobose to oblong, 12 mm. 2n = 36.


Phenology: Flowering year-round, mostly fall and winter.
Habitat: Disturbed areas, spreading from cultivation.
Elevation: 0–200 m.

Distribution

Introduced; Ala., Fla., Tex., South America (Brazil), widely in tropical and subtropical regions worldwide

Discussion

The enlarged storage roots of Manihot esculenta yield a starchy staple, now much consumed in tropical regions around the world. Tapioca, a pelletized and partially hydrolyzed form of cassava starch, is the chief form of consumption in temperate regions. Multiple cultivars are known. These are generally characterized as bitter (containing cyanogenic glycosides, which must be removed before consumption) or sweet (cyanogenic glycosides absent or at low levels). A form with variegated leaves is sometimes grown for ornament. Cassava was cultivated throughout the Neotropics in pre-Columbian times. As a root crop with poor storage qualities adapted to humid regions, archeological remains are few, leading to much speculation in the literature about the origin of this important crop. Molecular data reported by K. Olsen and B. A. Schaal (1999, 2001), indicate that cultivated cassava constitutes M. esculenta subsp. esculenta, derived by artificial selection from its sole wild ancestor, M. esculenta subsp. flabellifolia (Pohl) Ciferri from the southern border of the Amazon basin. Under this classification, all North American plants belong to subsp. esculenta.

Lower Taxa

None.
... more about "Manihot esculenta"
W. John Hayden +
Crantz +
unlobed;3-10-lobed +
campanulate +
1 cm10 mm <br />0.01 m <br /> (?) +  and 1.5 cm15 mm <br />0.015 m <br /> (?) +
1.5 cm15 mm <br />0.015 m <br /> (?) +
Ala. +, Fla. +, Tex. +, South America (Brazil) +  and widely in tropical and subtropical regions worldwide +
0–200 m. +
subtending +
Disturbed areas, spreading from cultivation. +
persistent +
spreading +  and erect +
lobed;undivided +
palmate +  and pinnate +
dentate +, serrate +  and entire +
entire +  and more or less repand +
5 cm50 mm <br />0.05 m <br /> (18 cm180 mm <br />0.18 m <br />) +
intrastaminal +
swollen +
2 cm20 mm <br />0.02 m <br /> (10 cm100 mm <br />0.1 m <br />) +
pistillate +  and staminate +
elongating +
20 cm200 mm <br />0.2 m <br /> (0.2 cm2 mm <br />0.002 m <br />) +
connate;distinct +
3 cm30 mm <br />0.03 m <br /> (20 cm200 mm <br />0.2 m <br />) +
Flowering year-round, mostly fall and winter. +
Inst. Rei Herb. +
allem1994a +, olsen1999a +, olsen2001a +  and rogers1965a +
subglobose +  and oblong +
distinct +  and connate +
0.7 cm7 mm <br />0.007 m <br /> (2 cm20 mm <br />0.02 m <br />) +
Introduced +
papillate +
flabellate +
hairy +  and glabrous +
Manihot esculenta +
species +
dioecious +  and monoecious +