Amaranth

Cultivated cousin of amaranth, amaranth, was known in South America several thousand years ago. The ancient peoples valued it as gold, and he was not only the main grain crop, but a cult plant. In ancient Greece the amaranth served as the emblem of immortality.

Amaranth (Amaranthus) of the amaranth family, or never-fading flower, his second name was for the fact that really never fades: in the form of its dried inflorescences can stand all winter in a vase, for which it is also called “winter people”.

Amaranth is an extraordinary flower. Decorative form of this plant was introduced to Europe in 1596. In the mountainous areas of India and Nepal, amaranth seeds cooked a special dish, which was the only permissible food.

In our country the amaranth brought N. And.Vavilov. It was the upturned amaranth (Amaranthus retroflexus), common or amaranth. Amaranth is known as a pernicious weed, on the one hand, and as one of the best forage crops, on the other. On the territory of Russia there are 15 species of amaranths.

There are about 90 species of amaranths, common in tropical and subtropical areas of America, Africa and Asia. Annuals, rarely perennial trojanstrasse with powerful, erect, branched, succulent stems up to 180 cm tall. Leaves petiolate, large, ovate or oblong, green, purple-green or tri-color. The flowers are very small, clustered in complex spike-like inflorescences straight or drooping. The fruit is a spherical capsule. In 1 g contains 1500-2000 seed germination which persists up to 5 years. In the seeds of amaranth found a high content of protein, lysine, biologically active substances, vitamins.

In the culture of gardeners use the following types of amaranths . or paniculate amaranth purple, amaranth, dark, three-colored amaranth, amaranth caudate . All these amarantha light-, moisture – and heat-loving, fast-growing plants. They do not tolerate frost. To accelerate the growth of amaranth, it is necessary to cut roots, stretching deep into the earth. Soil prefers light, nutritious, with sufficient content of lime, well-drained. In adulthood tolerates short dry periods (though stunted), responsive to fertilization.

Breed Amaranta seeds, in the ground or planting seedlings. Sowing the ground produced in mid-may, once a permanent place subject to its subsequent decimation. The seeds of amaranth are small, so sowing should be on a leveled surface, to a depth of 1 cm and be sure to priklopiti. In open ground the seedlings appear in about 12-15 days. In order not to wash out the planting, watering from a little better leechki. Seeds do not germinate if the soil temperature is below 14 degrees.

Some amarantha, it is desirable to grow seedlings. The sowing date – end of March. The age of seedlings at the time of its planting should be 60-65 days. At t 20-24.With seedlings emerge in 4-5 days. The young plants should provide bright light and thin. When plants develop 1-2 true leaves, they need to raspolirovat in the cups. Be sure seedlings watered with a solution of potassium permanganate to protect her from the black legs. Amarantite in the first month grow slowly, so it is desirable feeding (1-2 times a month). Seedlings planted in open ground when the threat of frost has passed, according to the scheme 40×70 see To give the amaranth a compact form presidnete top. Adult tall amarantha need to be tied to a support.

Amarantha well produce seeds, but different varieties intercrossed with each other and wild species. Plants may produce abundant self-seeding, often low-quality long products.

Wonderful blossoms of amaranth appear in late June – early July and continue to bloom and often grow until the end of summer. This is especially noticeable at amaranth caudate, inflorescences which fall to be so long that often lie on the ground.

Amaranth. THIS IS INTERESTING

Amaranth for 8 thousand years has been one of the major grain crops of South America and Mexico. It was called “the corn of the Aztecs,” “bread of the Incas” . along with beans and corn. After the Spanish conquest of America this culture has been forgotten. In Asia, amaranth is popular among hill tribes of India, Pakistan, Nepal and China as grain and vegetable culture. Products from the amaranth seeds taste and aroma reminiscent of nuts; they are very nutritious.

Health very helpful amaranth seedlings . Sprout it, regularly wetting with water, so it does not dry, but had sufficient access to air. Amaranth seedlings are recommended, in particular, in cancer. In folk medicine, the amaranth can be an interesting source of biologically active substances – amarantina, rutin, carotenoids.

To be continued

Amaranth
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