bunch of spices and seasonings in a scooper

Product Description

Amaranthus hypochondriacus

This tall, dramatic plant with long burgundy plumes bears plentiful, edible and nutritious white seeds. Its tender young reddish-purple leaves add color to salads.

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Quick Facts

Plant Size: 6–8 feet

Hardiness: Tender Annual

Sun: Full

Seed Planting Depth: 0.25 inch

Days to Harvest: 105 days

Good for Container:

Seed Origin: Open Pollinated

Easy to Grow: Yes

Water: Moderate

Days to Germinate: 3–10 days

Plant Spacing: 8–12 inches

Edible Flower: N/A

Growing Guide

Amaranth grows well in most North American soils and climates and is heat tolerant once established. It prefers a soil pH of 6.5–7.5 for highest grain production.

Direct seed shallowly, 1/8–1/2 inch deep, 8–10 seeds per foot, when soil has warmed and danger of frost has passed. Keep seedbed evenly moist during germination. Thin to one plant every 8–12 inches. Or start seed indoors and transplant 8–12 inches apart, in rows 18–24 inches apart. Use the closer spacing for leaf production, wider spacing for grain production.

Control early weeds by tilling or cultivating prior to seeding and until plants are about a foot tall, at which point they can outcompete most weeds. Use floating row covers to exclude flea beetles which damage young leaves if you are harvesting for salads. Encourage beneficial and predatory insects to control Tarnished Plant Bug (Lygus) a sucking insect that can damage the seed heads during the critical seed-fill stage, reducing grain yields.

Harvest young leaves while still tender for salads and cooked greens; cut flowers at peak bloom for bouquets; cut seed heads for grain harvest before they become fully dry and brittle to avoid shattering. Finish drying the seed heads on tarps or in paper bags in a dry, shady location. Separate the grain (seeds) from the chaff and store in a cool, dry location out of direct sunlight as you would other grains.

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