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: a tropical plant with thick roots that are used to make small white grains (called tapioca) that are used in cooking
Full Definition of CASSAVA
: any of several American plants (genus Manihot, especially M. esculenta) of the spurge family grown in the tropics for their edible tuberous roots which yield a nutritious starch; also: the root — compare tapioca 1
Tuberous edible perennial plant (Manihot esculenta) of the spurge family, from the New World tropics. It is cultivated for its tuberous roots, from which cassava flour, breads, tapioca, a laundry starch, and an alcoholic beverage are derived. It has conspicuous, almost palmate (fan-shaped) leaves and fleshy roots. Different varieties range from low herbs through many-branched shrubs to slender, unbranched trees adapted to diverse habitats.