|Amaranthus caudatus growing in the Botanical Garden, Bremen|
Amaranthus caudatus is a species of annual flowering plant. It goes by common names such as love-lies-bleeding, pendant amaranth, tassel flower, velvet flower, foxtail amaranth, and quilete.
Many parts of the plant, including the leaves and seeds, are edible, and are frequently used as a source of food in India as well as in South America, where it is the most important Andean species of Amaranthus, known as kiwicha. (See also amaranth seed and Andean ancient plants.) This species, as with many other amaranths, is originally from the American tropics. The exact origin is unknown, as A. caudatus is believed to be a wild Amaranthus hybridus aggregate.
The red color of the inflorescences is due to a high content of betacyanins, as in the related species known as "Hopi red dye" amaranth. Ornamental garden varieties sold under the latter name are either Amaranthus cruentus or a hybrid between A. cruentus and Amaranthus powellii. In indigenous agriculture, A. cruentus is the Central American counterpart to South American A. caudatus.
A. caudatus can grow anywhere from 1 to 2.5 metres (3 to 8 feet) in height, and grows best in full sunlight. It can handle a variety of conditions, both humid and arid. It is easily grown from seed.
In most of its range, it is planted as a summer annual. In temperate regions, plants can be started indoors in early spring and transplanted outdoors after the last frost.
- "The Plant List: A Working List of All Plant Species". Retrieved February 7, 2014.
- "Amaranthus caudatus". Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN). Agricultural Research Service (ARS), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). Retrieved 31 July 2014.
- "Love Lies Bleeding: A Memorable Name for a Striking Plant". davesgarden.com. Retrieved 2016-11-26.
- Information from University of Wisconsin
- Article about role of Amaranths in native American agriculture
- Jepson Manual Treatment
- Ecoport token for Amaranthus caudatus L.
- "Wild Food Plants Attracting Additional Consumer Categories": Amaranthus caudatus (Famine Food Guide website)
- Photo gallery
- Amaranthus caudatus L. Medicinal Plant Images Database (School of Chinese Medicine, Hong Kong Baptist University) (in Chinese) (in English)
- Crops for the Future: Kiwicha (Amaranthus caudatus)
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