Lerenes (Calathea allouia) aka Guinea Arrowroot is a root forming tropical perennial well known in Puerto Rico and the Caribbean region. The tubers are small and potato-like, but maintain their crispness when cooked.
The Utopian Seed Project was made aware of Lerenes after Keia Mastrianni, food writer and baker, visited Puerto Rico and returned asking if we knew of this particular root crop. Board member, Brandin Ruiz, then tracked down some tubers in Puerto Rico, and later a Floridian friend of our project, Mark Homesteader, shared some more roots. 2020 will be our first year experimenting with growing Lerenes.