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Uses

Toxic parts

No members of this genus are known to be poisonous, but when grown on nitrogen-rich soils they are known to concentrate nitrates in the leaves. This is especially noticeable on land where chemical fertilizers are used. Nitrates are implicated in stomach cancers, blue babies and some other health problems. It is inadvisable, therefore, to eat this plant if it is grown inorganically.

Edible uses

Notes

Leaves - cooked as a spinach[1]. The mild-flavoured leaves are rich in vitamins and minerals[1].

Seed - very small but easy to harvest and very nutritious. They are eaten cooked or ground into a powder and used for making cakes etc[1][2]. They can also be sprouted and used in salads[1]. The seed can be cooked whole, and becomes very gelatinous like this, but it is rather difficult to crush all of the small seeds in the mouth and thus some of the seed will pass right through the digestive system without being assimilated[K].

The flowers are used as a food colouring in ceremonial maize bread[1].

Unknown part

Leaves

Material uses

Yellow and green dyes can be obtained from the whole plant[3].

Unknown part

Dye

Medicinal uses(Warning!)

There are no medicinal uses listed for Amaranthus cruentus.

Ecology

Ecosystem niche/layer

Ecological Functions

Nothing listed.

Forage

Nothing listed.

Shelter

Nothing listed.

Propagation

Seed - sow late spring in situ. An earlier sowing can be made in a greenhouse and the plants put out after the last expected frosts. Germination is usually rapid and good if the soil is warm[4]. A drop in temperature overnight aids germination[4]. Cuttings of growing plants root easily[5].

Practical Plants is currently lacking information on propagation instructions of Amaranthus cruentus. Help us fill in the blanks! Edit this page to add your knowledge.



Cultivation

Prefers a well-drained fertile soil in a sunny position[6]. Requires a hot sheltered position if it is to do well[K]. Tolerates a pH in the range 4 to 7.5.

Plants should not be given inorganic fertilizers, see notes above on toxicity. This species is cultivated for its edible seed in many parts of S. America and in Japan[7][8][1]. There is at least one named variety, 'Oeschberg' is a very productive plant, growing 1 metre tall and can yield up to 2.5 tonnes per hectare[1]. This species is the most adaptable of the grain amaranths, it also flowers under a wider range of daylength hours than the other species[1].

Most if not all members of this genus photosynthesize by a more efficient method than most plants. Called the 'C4 carbon-fixation pathway', this process is particularly efficient at high temperatures, in bright sunlight and under dry conditions[9].

Crops

Problems, pests & diseases

Associations & Interactions

There are no interactions listed for Amaranthus cruentus. Do you know of an interaction that should be listed here? edit this page to add it.

Polycultures & Guilds

There are no polycultures listed which include Amaranthus cruentus.

Descendants

Cultivars

Varieties

None listed.

Subspecies

None listed.

Full Data

This table shows all the data stored for this plant.

Taxonomy
Binomial name
Amaranthus cruentus
Genus
Amaranthus
Family
Amaranthaceae
Imported References
Edible uses
Medicinal uses
Material uses & Functions
Botanic
Propagation
Cultivation
Environment
Cultivation
Uses
Edible uses
None listed.
Material uses
None listed.
Medicinal uses
None listed.
Functions & Nature
Functions
Provides forage for
Provides shelter for
Environment
Hardiness Zone
?
Heat Zone
?
Water
moderate
Sun
full sun
Shade
no shade
Soil Texture
Soil Water Retention
Environmental Tolerances
    Ecosystems
    Native Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Adapted Climate Zones
    None listed.
    Native Geographical Range
    None listed.
    Native Environment
    None listed.
    Ecosystem Niche
    None listed.
    Root Zone Tendancy
    None listed.
    Life
    Deciduous or Evergreen
    ?
    Herbaceous or Woody
    ?
    Life Cycle
    Growth Rate
    ?
    Mature Size
    2 x meters
    Fertility
    Pollinators
    Flower Colour
    ?
    Flower Type

    "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

    "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.


    "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.


    "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki., "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki. "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.






    References

    1. ? 1.01.11.21.31.41.51.61.71.8 Facciola. S. Cornucopia - A Source Book of Edible Plants. Kampong Publications ISBN 0-9628087-0-9 (1990-00-00)
    2. ? 2.02.1 Moerman. D. Native American Ethnobotany Timber Press. Oregon. ISBN 0-88192-453-9 (1998-00-00)
    3. ? 3.03.1 Grae. I. Nature's Colors - Dyes from Plants. MacMillan Publishing Co. New York. ISBN 0-02-544950-8 (1974-00-00)
    4. ? 4.04.1 Rice. G. (Editor) Growing from Seed. Volume 1. Thompson and Morgan. (1987-00-00)
    5. ? Larkcom J. Oriental Vegetables John Murray ISBN 0-7195-4781-4 (1991-00-00)
    6. ? 6.06.1 Huxley. A. The New RHS Dictionary of Gardening. 1992. MacMillan Press ISBN 0-333-47494-5 (1992-00-00)
    7. ? Ohwi. G. Flora of Japan. (English translation) Smithsonian Institution (1965-00-00)
    8. ? Towle. M. A. The Ethno-Botany of Pre-Columbian Peru. ()
    9. ? Popenoe. H. et al Lost Crops of the Incas National Academy Press ISBN 0-309-04264-X (1990-00-00)

    "image:Amaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg|248px" cannot be used as a page name in this wiki.

    Facts about "Amaranthus cruentus"RDF feed
    Article is incompleteYes +
    Article requires citationsNo +
    Article requires cleanupYes +
    Belongs to familyAmaranthaceae +
    Belongs to genusAmaranthus +
    Has binomial nameAmaranthus cruentus +
    Has common namePurple Amaranth +
    Has drought toleranceIntolerant +
    Has edible partUnknown part +, Leaves + and Seed +
    Has edible useColouring + and Unknown use +
    Has fertility typeSelf fertile +, Wind + and Self +
    Has flowers of typeMonoecious +
    Has imageAmaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg +
    Has lifecycle typeAnnual +
    Has material partUnknown part +
    Has material useDye +
    Has mature height2 +
    Has primary imageAmaranthus cruentus 'Oeschberg' Flower 1200px.jpg +
    Has search nameamaranthus cruentus + and purple amaranth +
    Has shade toleranceNo shade +
    Has soil ph preferenceVery acid +, Acid +, Neutral + and Alkaline +
    Has soil texture preferenceSandy +, Loamy + and Clay +
    Has soil water retention preferenceWell drained +
    Has sun preferenceFull sun +
    Has taxonomic rankSpecies +
    Has taxonomy nameAmaranthus cruentus +
    Has water requirementsmoderate +
    Is taxonomy typeSpecies +
    PFAF cultivation notes migratedNo +
    PFAF edible use notes migratedNo +
    PFAF material use notes migratedNo +
    PFAF medicinal use notes migratedYes +
    PFAF propagation notes migratedNo +
    PFAF toxicity notes migratedNo +
    Tolerates nutritionally poor soilNo +
    Uses mature size measurement unitMeters +
    Has subobjectThis property is a special property in this wiki.Amaranthus cruentus +, Amaranthus cruentus +, Amaranthus cruentus + and Amaranthus cruentus +