Amaranth is a plant that belongs to the family Amaranthaceae and it’s a part of the genus Amaranthus. It is an annual plant. Some of the common names include Love-lies-bleeding, Red Cockscomb, and Velvet Flower.
This plant is mostly grown for its edible leaves and seeds. The leaves are rich in iron and calcium and the seeds contain high levels of protein.
Amaranths can grow up to 10 feet tall, but most varieties are shorter and more suited for small spaces like indoor gardens.
Amaranth is grown best in dry climates with moderate rainfall.
How to Grow Amaranth From Seeds
Amaranth seeds can be grown in any climate condition during the spring season in your garden. Some varieties of amaranth such as Amaranthus cruentus (blood amaranth) do not need any pre-treatment or stratification before germination.
But most other varieties require a period of moist chilling, which stimulates germination and subsequent growth. This treatment typically consists of storing the seed overwinter in moistened peat moss or vermicular.
The best time to plant your amaranth is in the spring when the soil temperature is at least 60 degrees Fahrenheit or 16 degrees Celsius.
- Amaranth seeds need to be soaked in water before planting them in the soil. The duration of soaking can vary depending on the type of amaranth seeds you’re planting. Usually, it takes about 8 hours to soak amaranth seeds provided by seed companies while it can take up to 24 hours for homegrown amaranths.
- Place your soaked Amaranth seeds on wet paper towels or kitchen towels and put them in a container or bowl with holes at the bottom so that the excess water can drain out easily
- Place your container or bowl of Amaranth seed on top of some potting mix, then cover it with potting mix
Amaranth seeds take about 1-2 weeks to germinate, depending on the temperature of the environment where they are left to grow.
How to Harvest Amaranth
Harvest amaranth when the flowers bloom and the leaves are yellow. Cut off the stalk with a sharp knife, so it will dry better in storage.
Strip off all the leaves from the stalk by pulling upwards with your hands or by slicing them off with a knife.
Amaranth Planting Depth and Distance
Amaranth is a very attractive plant with an edible purple flower. Plus, it’s extremely easy to grow. Its optimal planting depth is ¾ inches deep and it should be planted at least three feet apart.
Amaranth Planting Zone and Season
Amaranth plants are beautiful additions to any home or garden. They can be grown in any type of soil, so there’s no worry about soil conditions where you live. This plant thrives best in full sun but can also grow in partial shade.
Amaranth is a plant that can grow in all parts of the world that have a temperate climate. The United States has a temperate climate, which means that amaranth can grow from July-October.
If you live in other countries, Amaranth grows best in warmer climates during the summer months of spring and early autumn.
Amaranth Companion Plants
Plant amaranth near tomatoes, squash, corn, or potatoes for an attractive garden arrangement.