Tallest Amaranth plant-world record set by
[Jan 12]RHINEBECK, NY,USA-- Jesse Eldrid cultivated a 27
feet, 10 inches Amaranthus Australis and has set world record
for the Tallest Amaranth.
His secret? "lots of cow and chicken
manure, sun and water. At one point the plants grew feet per day
Photo: Jeese's previous record was "only"
a fifteen foot tall Amaranth plant. (enlarge
Jesse Eldrid: For the past few years
I have been researching seeds from all over the world. I have grown
Corn from Ecuador, Peru, Nayarit, Chiapas, Guatemala and Columbia.
Sorghum from Ethiopia. And African pearl millet. Zea nicaraguensis
from Nicaragua Tesonite Root crops from Japan, and UK. Sunflowers
from China and beyond!! Pumpkins(Canada and buffalo) Watermelons
the Carolinas . And the list goes on…
On October 25th, 2007, after a long summer
of working, watching, and waiting, he finally contacted county officials
in order to obtain a legitimate measurement of the Amaranthus Australis
plant he had been growing since the beginning of the year.
Just before the official measurement, the plant
also began producing flowers which also contributed to the overall
height of the amaranth. Another factor contributing to the overwhelming
size of the plant was the amount of water it received per day --
approximately 30 gallons per plant, per day.
In order to give the plant extra support (and
to determine the benchmark for the old record) Jesse built a fifteen
foot tall trellis for the amaranth. It didn't take long for the
plant to outgrow it, though. By the middle of August, it was no
longer possible to measure the plant with a ladder alone.
When Jesse contacted the local bureau of weights and
measures, he knew that he had a record-breaking plant -- but he
didn't know that his plant would be almost twelve feet (11.98) taller
than the the goal he had set for himself in the existing record:
the official measurement of the plant, he would learn that afternoon,
was 27'10". (enlarge
Department of Consumer Affairs-Wheight and Measures
the plant's actual height using a measuring tape and a bucket truck
(see photo left and video). By growing crops such as these, Jesse hopes to raise
awareness about the natural world and the potential for alternative
Amaranth plantvideo Native to the United
States, Amaranthus Australis is a seasonal plant; after the
first frost of the year, Moore's specimen will die. It typically
flourishes in warmer climates, including the southeastern United
The genus Amaranthus contains at least 60 species,
according to David Brenner, curator for amaranth in the U.S. National
Plant Germplasm System based in Beltsville, Md.
Amaranth is one of the most nutritious, easy-to-grow
and well-adapted — not to mention visually spectacular — plants
on the planet.
“It is the perfect crop for poor farmers,” Ominique
Guillet, a French seedsman and founder of the Kokopelli Seed Foundation,
which works to supply free organic, heirloom seeds to poor farmers
“It grows in poor soils without irrigation, it is easy
to harvest and thresh without machinery, and it provides high-quality
protein, second only to mothers’ milk.” Guillet also loves amaranth
because it is so productive. “From one plant, from one tiny seed,
you can get more than 100,000 seeds, maybe more!”
Amaranth grows to head-high or taller in an array
of gorgeous colors and shapes, and it can provide year-round sustenance.
In early summer, the young greens are a delicious addition to salads,
with a flavor similar to spinach. Throughout the growth cycle, the
larger leaves are healthful and delicious when steamed, sautéed
or used in soups.uring the heat of the summer, the plants will mature
into a regal garden display. In the fall, mature seed heads will
yield many ounces of protein-packed seeds with a rich, nutty taste
Not only are the seeds high in protein (about
16 percent compared to 10 percent in most whole grains), but the
protein has a balanced amino acid profile especially high in lysine,
which is rare for plant foods and essential to humans for protein
synthesis. Combining amaranth with other
grains complements their protein and boosts their nutritional value.
Amaranth seeds also contain generous amounts of calcium, iron, phosphorous
and fiber. The leaves are high in protein, as well as beta carotene,
iron, calcium and fiber. All this nutrition and flavor comes from
a plant that requires little water and can grow in almost any type
of soil. It’s no wonder amaranth is often dubbed a “superfood.”