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Organic Quinoa Seeds

SKU17131

Market price: $3.75
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Organic Quinoa Seeds

Organic Quinoa Seeds

 

  Sustainably Grown 


  Package contains 5 grams

One gram will sow 50 feet at (thinned) spacing of 12-18” on 24” rows.

This variety will grown numerous different colored stalks.

 

Quinoa is native to the Andes Mountains of Bolivia, Chile, and Peru. This crop was a staple food of the Inca people and remains an important food crop for their descendants, the Quechua and Aymara peoples who live in rural regions.

Quinoa is a highly nutritious food. The nutritional quality of this crop has been compared to that of dried whole milk by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. The protein quality and quantity in quinoa seed is often superior to those of more common cereal grains. Quinoa is higher in lysine than wheat, and the amino acid content of quinoa seed is considered well-balanced for human and animal nutrition, similar to that of casein.

Quinoa is used to make flour, soup, breakfast cereal, and alcohol. Most quinoa sold in the United States has been sold as whole grain that is cooked separately like rice or in combination dishes such as pilaf. Quinoa flour works well as a starch extender when combined with wheat flour or grain, or corn meal, in making biscuits, bread, and processed food.

Plants grow from 1 1/2 to 6 1/2 ft in height, and come in a range of colors that vary from white, yellow, and pink, to darker red, purple, and black. Quinoa has a thick, erect, woody stalk that may be branched or unbranched, and alternate, wide leaves that resemble the foot of a goose. Leaves on younger plants are usually green; but as the plant matures, they turn yellow, red, or purple. The root system develops from a tap root to form a highly branched system that makes plants more resistant to drought. Varieties of quinoa mature in 90 to 125 days after planting in southern Colorado. Early-maturing varieties are recommended because of the short growing season at these high elevations.

Quinoa requires short day lengths and cool temperatures for good growth. Areas in South America where it is still produced tend to be marginal agricultural areas that are prone to drought and have soils with low fertility. Cultivated quinoa will flower and produce seed at high elevations between 7,000 and 10,000 ft in Colorado since it requires a cool temperature for good vegetative growth. Research conducted in Colorado reported that temperatures which exceeded 95°F tended to cause plant dormancy or pollen sterility. In several years of trials near the Twin Cities, Minnesota, quinoa plants have failed to set seed; probably due to high temperatures.

Quinoa plants are usually tolerant to light frosts (30° to 32°F). Plants should not be exposed to temperatures below 28°F to avoid the 70 to 80% loss that occurred in Colorado during 1985 when plants were in mid-bloom (Johnson and Croissant, 1990). However, plants are not affected by temperatures down to 20°F after the grain has reached the soft-dough stage. Quinoa will flower earlier when grown in areas with shorter daylengths.

Quinoa is generally not a widely adapted crop due to temperature sensitivity. Farmers should experiment first before planting large acreages.

This crop grows well on sandy-loam to loamy-sand soils. Marginal agricultural soils are frequently used in South America to grow quinoa. These soils have poor or excessive drainage, low natural fertility, or very acidic (pH of 4.8) to alkaline (8.5) conditions. Source of information: Univ. of Minnesota

Simple threshing techniques:

Quinoa Growing Instructions

With it's origins in the high Andean plateau, quinoa is best adapted to cooler climates, but will grow in almost any moderate climate.  Keep in mind that those with hot summers may have reduced yields.  Quinoa doesn't like it's roots wet so make sure the soil doesn't stay inundated with water.  Plant 1/2 to 1" deep (depending on soil moisture) into a well prepared seed bed in late spring.  Space plants 3-4" apart on 24" rows for a single-headed crop.  For maximum yield, space plants 12" apart on 24" rows for multi branched plants.  Keep the soil moist while germinating.  
 
Quinoa spends it's first few weeks developing roots, so be vigilant to keep the soil weeded, or weeds can quickly take over a plot. Once the plants start to mature, the seeds will mature from the top of the plant down, allowing for an extended harvest.  If you wait until the whole plant is mature, the top seeds can shatter and be lost, so it's best to harvest the seed heads as they mature from the top down.  
 
Thresh into a clean bucket or garbage can by hitting the seed head against the side, or rubbing the seed head between gloved hands.  Quinoa contains a saponin coating that will need to be rinsed off before eating.  Before eating, soak the seeds for a few minutes, and then place the seeds into a colander under running water until no more foam forms.  
 
Quinoa seeding rate is about 10/lb per acre with yields normally between 1,000-3,000 lb per acre
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