An amaranth (in common with schichritz) is an annual plant – unpretentious, which tolerates both low and high air temperatures, loving sunlight and ready to bathe in it all day long. Respects amaranth and timely watering, but it is able to endure a small drought.
There is a great variety of amaranth varieties: fodder, grains, vegetables and decorative. If you want to grow it in the country for later consumption – one thing, and quite another, if it attracts you lush blooming beauty that can fill any garden with charismatic appeal.
It is very important to know what species the plant belongs to before planting it in your backyard. Therefore, today we will consider the most popular varieties of amaranth, which are nutritional and feed value for gardeners, so that you can take them into service and put them into practice.
Little secret: grain and vegetable amaranth is always painted in light colors, and decorative – in dark.
Edible varieties of amaranth
The amaranth varieties listed below are a storehouse of nutrients that contain proteins, carbohydrates, fats, vitamins, amino acids, antioxidants and minerals.
“Valentine”. Affectionately, typically as a female, is called the early ripe variety of amaranth, before full maturity of which passes 110-120 days. It reaches a height of 170 cm, delighting gardeners with bright red-violet leaves of the shape of an ellipse. The harvest gives a rich, from 0.6 to 0.7 kg of seeds collected per square meter.
“Sturdy.” Resistant, strong and precocious variety, which opens up in full force already 80 days after the seedlings emerge. The bushes are tall, 140 cm stretching towards the sun, decorated with bright green succulent leaves. The yield of the variety varies from 2.5 to 3 kilograms per square meter.
White Leaf is a white amaranth, a dwarf plant not exceeding a height of 20 cm. It is distinguished by its soft green stems and the same leaves, has a pleasant taste and is therefore often chosen as a plant grown at home.
A little secret: in order to eat an edible variety of amaranth, it grows abundantly and feels free on the garden bed, it is best to plant it in the soil on which tomatoes, cabbage or potatoes grew. Bean cultures are also good forerunners for these varieties, however, it must be remembered that planting amaranth in the same place more often than once every 4 years is not worth it. He will not take root or give a poor harvest.
Amaranth feed varieties
Amaranth fodder varieties are priceless in their practical meaning: they are added to food for pigs, chickens and cows, and not only OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA leaves, but also the stems and even the roots of the plant are used. The most unpretentious fodder varieties are considered to be:
Aztec”. Gives a rich harvest both in terms of leaves and in terms of grain. Amaranth stems are powerful, strong, strong and stretch 150 cm in height. They are distinguished by a red color, the same shade of inflorescences and dark brown seeds.
“Giant” – a popular forage variety, giving plenty of lush foliage, which is so fond of domestic animals. The “Giant” grows really large: up to 165-190 cm, it has red and yellow inflorescences and white seeds.
“Lera” – amaranth, reaching a height of 170-220 cm, having green leaves, stretched in length red streaks. Inflorescences varieties have a crimson color and look like a whisk.
Amaranth seed varieties
The following varieties of amaranth are grown by summer residents and gardeners solely for the production of seeds that go well to livestock feed or are used to make healthy oil.
“Kharkiv-1”. Universal variety amaranth, respected by agronomists for their usefulness and fecundity. Not only leaves and stems, but also grains with healing properties are used. The term of ripening varieties is about 110 days.
The “orange giant” is really strong and beautiful: stretching 2.5 meters in length, it gives strong and juicy arcuate stems and useful seeds, from which valuable flour with a pleasant nutty taste is made.
“Ultra”. Amaranth, ripening early and carrying a large amount of healing oil in its seeds. Reaches a height of 100-130 cm. The amaranth grains of this variety are perfectly suitable for the production of flour or oil extraction.
Tips for growing amaranth in the garden
We have already said that amaranth is unpretentious, it copes well with temperature changes and will not wither if, for some reason, it was forgotten to be watered. In addition, the plant is practically not afraid of diseases and pests, but will thank you if you decide to plant it in a sun-drenched area. The soil for planting is better to choose a nutritious, loose, light.
An adult amaranth gives up to 500 seeds, which are a pleasure to collect, but it is better to do it when they have not ripened slightly so as not to lose the harvest. Such an important quality as germination, amaranth retains up to 5 years. By the way, amaranth reproduces not only by seed, but also by seedlings, and the latter option is considered optimal for obtaining a good harvest.
Do not worry, seeing the poor growth of amaranth in the first month after disembarkation: the power of the plant is revealed after 30-40 days, when it accelerates and begins to reach upwards with power, towards the sun and the sky. At this time, amaranth is able to stretch in length for 6-7 centimeters per day!
Weeding the amaranth is not necessary, but the plant will not give up on good feeding. The best nutrients for it are nitrogen fertilizers, which should be added to the soil in the early morning after watering. Another useful tip: Pinch off the top of the bush in late June – early July to strengthen the ovary of the fruit.
The beneficial properties of amaranth appear when the plant is stretched 20 centimeters high. Then you can safely cut the bottom leaves and add them to food, if we are talking about edible varieties. Collect the seeds begin in early September, when panicles gradually change color and fall to the ground. If seeds ripen unevenly, you can carefully cut the “spikelets” and hide them in a dark place.
Little secret: having planted amaranth in the country, you will notice that the plants adjacent to it have ceased to be afraid of diseases, and having treated them with an extract of amaranth, you will definitely get a good harvest!