It is a perennial herb, found in rainforest type climates, which has several uses in the kitchen.
Did you know that it isn't really a root at all? The starch that is extracted from the rhizome, or horizontal stem, is what is referred to as "arrowroot" in cooking and dietary terminology.
This starch is easy to digest and being gluten free, can be used as a flour substitute for baking and thickening purposes.
The photograph, at the top of the page, shows it in its "raw" state, but you would normally buy it as a white powder (read about how it is converted into this, lower down this page).
The taste of arrowroot is somewhat neutral; although some say it has a mild, "different" flavor.