Return to the Container Gardening Forum | Post a Follow-Up

 o
Growing Quinoa or Amaranth in containers?

Posted by alrightypewriter 9b (My Page) on
Wed, Nov 10, 10 at 14:45

Does anyone have info or experience growing either amaranth or quinoa in containers (for the seed grains)? What size container do you recommend and how many plants for a modest harvest?


Follow-Up Postings:

 o
RE: Growing Quinoa or Amaranth in containers?

Isn't quinoa a high elevation, cold dry weather crop? It's grown high in the Andes.

Maybe you could grow it in the refrigerator?


 o
RE: Growing Quinoa or Amaranth in containers?

hahaha, ok, point taken. I found some seeds from Botanical Interests and they didn't mention those requirements. They even had info on planting in warm climates. Whatever sells the seeds, right?


 o
RE: Growing Quinoa or Amaranth in containers?

Grew Amaranth in containers before, but for the greens. Taste good stir-fried. However you don't get much, leaves or grain from just a container. But they are pretty plants.


 o
RE: Growing Quinoa or Amaranth in containers?

Growing:

You can simply plant organic quinoa seeds from the supermarket. The seeds can planted straight into the ground or in containers. Early June is a great time of year to start the seeds across North America and Europe. Seeds planted directly into the ground will grow to about 5-6 feet tall, seeds planted in containers will grow to about 2 feet tall.

In both circumstances the plants will grow a mass of millet-like seeds on the top of the plant and green spade shaped leaves which can also be used as a salad green. The plants should be watered and fertilized for best results, but they are generally very hardy and low-maintenance.

Harvesting:

In the fall, when the plants start to turn brown you can trim the stalks and collect the seeds. The seeds naturally have a bitter coating which deter birds, but also compromise the taste of the harvest.

The bitter coating can be washed away. We've found that the best way to harvest the seeds is to soak the stalks in water with a drop of dish soap for a few minutes to remove the coating and any insects (as shown above in picture 3 and 4). Hang the stalks upside down and let them dry out. Then simple pull the mass of seed of the stalk with your thumb and forefinger.

After removing the mass of seeds simply grind the seeds lightly with your finger or a mortar and pestle. The small white seeds will separate from their casings and if soak the ground up seed heads in water the edible quinoa seeds will sink and the pulp will float, making it easy to separate and dry the seeds.

In a 3' by 6" wide and 6" deep container I was able to grow about one cup of quinoa. It added to a wonderful meal for two in late September.

It's easy, cheap, productive, and doesn't take up much space. Why not try growing some in a container or in your garden this year?


 o
RE: Growing Quinoa or Amaranth in containers?

Can you tell me how far apart you planted your Quinoa? I am wondering how many plants you had in that space. I am building a square foot garden, but no one has mentioned quinoa in that forum yet.


 o Post a Follow-Up

Please Note: Only registered members are able to post messages to this forum.

    If you are a member, please log in.

    If you aren't yet a member, join now!


Return to the Container Gardening Forum

Information about Posting

  • You must be logged in to post a message. Once you are logged in, a posting window will appear at the bottom of the messages. If you are not a member, please register for an account.
  • Posting is a two-step process. Once you have composed your message, you will be taken to the preview page. You will then have a chance to review your post, make changes and upload photos.
  • After posting your message, you may need to refresh the forum page in order to see it.
  • Before posting copyrighted material, please read about Copyright and Fair Use.
  • We have a strict no-advertising policy!
  • If you would like to practice posting or uploading photos, please visit our Test forum.
  • If you need assistance, please Contact Us and we will be happy to help.


Learn more about in-text links on this page here