Cassava Manihot esculenta
How to sow cassava: Cuttings, start indoors and transplant outside after temps are above 21º C
Sun requirement for cassava: Plant in Full Sun
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Cassava, or Yuca (not to be confused with Yucca, the spiky desert plant), is a woody shrub native to South America. Cassava is cultivated in tropical and subtropical areas for it's edible starchy roots. The tapered roots are 15-30cm long and their white or yellowish flesh is covered in rough brown rinds. They are a major staple food in the developing world and the third-largest source of food carbohydrates in the tropics. Cassava is classified as sweet or bitter. The roots, leaves, and stems of both varieties contain cyanogenetic glucoside, a toxin that produces cyanide. They must be carefully prepared (usually boiled or fermented) to remove the toxin. Cassava can be made into a flour, dried to a powdery extract (tapioca), made into a fermented flaky version (garri), or ground and cooked into a crunchy meal (farofa). Cassava requires tropical climates, at least eight months of warm weather, and at least 50cm of water a year.
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