Maranta L.
  • Sp. Pl. 1: 2. 1753. (1 May 1753)
  • Arrowroot, prayer-plant [for Bartolomea Maranti, Venetian physician and botanist who lived during the mid 1500s]

Cite taxon page as 'WFO (2021): Maranta L. Published on the Internet; Accessed on: 21 Sep 2021'

General Information

Herbs caulescent, erect or prostrate, sometimes much branched, occasionally with tuberous, swollen rhizomes. Leaves both basal and cauline or all cauline; petiole sheathing at base. Inflorescences 2 to several per leafy shoot, each a dichotomous panicle or raceme; bracts few, each subtending 2--6 pedicellate flower pairs, herbaceous, late deciduous or persistent. Sepals green, herbaceous. Corolla white; tube 4--14 mm, base often inflated; lobes subequal. Staminode tube usually short; staminodes white, occasionally tinged or marked with purple; outer staminodes 2, petaloid, obovate, exceeding corolla lobes; cucullate staminode with median or subterminal appendage; callose staminode obovate, apex petaloid. Ovary 1-loculed by abortion. Style thick. Fruit a capsule, obovoid to ellipsoid, dehiscent. Seed 1.

  • Provided by: [A].Flora Of CHina @
    • Source: [
    • 1
    • ]. 

    Plants terrestrial, prostrate, scandent, or upright, usually dying back to rhizome during dry season, 0.1--1.5(--1.8) m. Rhizomes occasionally swollen, storing starch. Stems branched or unbranched with basal and cauline leaves to highly branched above elongate, cane-like stem (internode) with few or no basal leaves. Leaves homotropic [rarely antitropic]; sheath usually auriculate, not spongy; blade [patterned] plain green, ovate to elliptic. Inflorescences usually 2--several per shoot, spikel-like, unbranched; bracts persistent, subtending 2--6 pedicellate flower pairs, herbaceous; prophylls keeled, membranous; secondary bracts absent; bracteoles usually absent. Flowers self-fertilizing [or outcrossing], corolla white, staminodes white [purple]; sepals persistent in fruit, more than 5 mm, herbaceous; corolla tube [4--]12--14 mm, corolla lobes unequal; outer staminodes 2, petal-like; callose staminode apex usually petal-like; cucullate staminode with 1 appendage, medial [subterminal], flaplike [fingerlike]; stylar movement in single plane; style unappendaged. Fruits capsules, 1-seeded, obliquely ellipsoid, pericarp relatively thin, dehiscent. Seeds brown, ellipsoid, rugose; perisperm canal 1, distally branched; aril conspicuous, white.

  • Provided by: [B].Flora of North America @
    • Source: [
    • 2
    • ]. 


    Plantas postradas, escandentes o algo erectas, con hojas basales y caulinares, hasta plantas muy ramificadas y con pocas hojas basales o sin ellas; rizomas ocasionalmente abultados con reservas de almidón. Hojas homótropas (raramente antítropas), láminas ovadas a elípticas; vaina generalmente auriculada. Inflorescencias generalmente 2–varias por brote, brácteas persistentes, herbáceas, abrazando 2–6 pares de flores pediceladas, brácteas secundarias ausentes, bractéolas generalmente ausentes; sépalos herbáceos, verdes; tubo de la corola 4–14 mm de largo, 2–13 veces más largo que ancho; estaminodios exteriores 2, estaminodio calloso generalmente petaloide apicalmente; ovario 3-locular, 2 lóculos estériles y 1 fértil, éste con 1 óvulo, sépalos persistentes. Cápsula con 1 semilla arilada.

    Género con ca 32 especies en América tropical y subtropical, distribuidas desde el sur de México hasta el norte de Argentina; 2 especies se conocen en Nicaragua y otra se espera encontrar.

    L. Andersson. Revision of Maranta subgen. Maranta (Marantaceae). Nordic J. Bot. 6: 729–756. 1986.

  • Provided by: [C].Flora de Nicaragua
    • Source: [
    • 3
    • ]. 

    Caulescent herbs from tuberiferous rhizomes; leaves both basal and cauline; stem branching rather diffusely and bearing at the tips rather loose racemiform cymes of rather small, pedicellate flowers subtended by caducous, somewhat foliaceous bracts; sepals 3, free, equal; corolla with a more or less prominent tube, the lobes subequal; staminodia 3-4, the outermost 2 very conspicuous and labelli- form; fertile stamen 1, petaloid; ovary inferior, 1-celled; fruit nut-like and indehiscent, 1-seeded.

  • Provided by: [E].Flora de Panama
    • Source: [
    • 4
    • ]. 

    Plantas terrestres; tallos aéreos foliosos presentes, erectos o postrados a escandentes, a veces muy ramifica-dos. Hojas basales y caulinares, o todas caulinares; lámina homótropa (CR spp.), ovada a elíptica u obovada,verde (CR spp.). Infls. terminales, a veces axilares, generalmente 2–varias por tallo; brácteas 2–13, herbáceas,persistentes, subyacentes a 2–6 pares de fls.; brácteas secundarias ausentes; bractéolas usualmente ausentes.Fls. en pares pediculados; sépalos herbáceos, verdes; corola con tubo 4–14 mm, 2–13× tan largo como ancho;estaminodios externos 2; ovario con 2 lóculos estériles y 1 lóculo fértil, 1-ovulado. Frs. capsulares, los sépalospersistentes; semilla 1.

  • Provided by: [D].Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica
    • Source: [
    • 6
    • 5
    • ]. 



    Andersson, L. 1986. Revision of Maranta subgen. Maranta. Nordic J. Bot. 6: 729--756. Anonymous. 1893. St. Vincent arrowroot. Bull. Misc. Inform. Kew 1893: 191--204. Hodge, W. H. and D. Taylor. 1957. The ethnobotany of the Island Caribs of Dominica. Webbia 12: 513--644. Morton, J. F. 1977. Wild Plants for Survival in South Florida, ed. 4. Miami. Purseglove, J. W. 1972. Tropical Crops. Monocotyledons. 2 vols. London. Pp. 336--342. Sturtevant, W. C. 1969. History and ethnography of some West Indian starches. In: P. J. Ucko and G. W. Dimbleby, eds. 1969. The Domestication and Exploitation of Plants and Animals. Chicago. Pp. 177--199.

  • Provided by: [B].Flora of North America @
    • Source: [
    • 2
    • ]. 

    Other Local Names

    Arrowroot, prayer-plant [for Bartolomea Maranti, Venetian physician and botanist who lived during the mid 1500s]

     Information From

    Flora Of CHina @
    'Flora of China @ eFloras (2008). Published on the Internet [accessed August 2016]' Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
    • A Missouri Botanical Garden
    Flora of North America @
    'Flora of North America @ eFloras (2008). Published on the Internet [accessed August 2016]' Missouri Botanical Garden, St. Louis, MO & Harvard University Herbaria, Cambridge, MA.
    • B Flora of North America Association
    Flora de Nicaragua
    WD Stevens, CU Ulloa, A Pool and OM Montiel. Missouri Botanical Garden Press, 2001
    • C Missouri Botanical Garden
    Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica
    Hammel, B. E.; Grayum, M. H.; Herrera, C.; Zamora, N. Manual de Plantas de Costa Rica. Missouri Botanical Garden Press, 2003-2014
    • D Missouri Botanical Garden
    Flora de Panama
    Robert E. Woodson, Jr. and Robert W. Schery Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden Vol. 67, No. 4 (1980), pp. ii-xxxiii
    • E Missouri Botanical Garden
    World Flora Online Data. 2017.
    • F CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0).
    World Flora Online consortium
    World Flora Online Data. 2018.
    • G CC0 1.0 Universal (CC0 1.0).