How to Plant Amaranth

Overview

Amaranth is a grain crop that grows 5 to 7 feet tall, producing broad leaves. High in protein and amino acids and low in saturated fats, this grain is gaining ground as a nutritional and beneficial food for humans. Amaranth is an annual crop growing throughout most of the United States. In the North, frost can kill it off before harvest. Knowledge of how to start this crop from seed will give you a good start.

Step 1

Choose an area to plant your amaranth. This plant prefers flat land so the tiny seeds do not wash away. Pick a spot with full sun and fertile, well-drained soil. Small particle soil is best.

Step 2

Till the land with a rototiller or hoe by hand in the spring. Amaranth does best when planted after soil temperatures warm to 65 degrees F. Eliminate any weeds you find and break up clumps in the soil. Mix 1 inch of organic compost, 4 to 6 inches into the soil.

Step 3

Water the seedbed. Make shallow v-shaped troughs in the soil about 1/2 to 3/4 inch deep. Space multiple troughs far enough apart so you can walk through them.

Step 4

Mix the small amaranth seeds with sand, adding 1g (1/4 tsp.) of seeds for every 100g (3.5 oz.) of sand. Pour the sand in the troughs. This will space out the seeds. Cover the seeds with 1/2 inch of soil and tamp down to increase contact.

Step 5

Keep the soil moist until the seedlings begin to break through. After a few weeks, when the seedlings have a few leaves, thin them to 4 to 6 inches apart.

Things You'll Need

  • Rototiller or hoe
  • Organic compost
  • Sand
  • Amaranth seeds

References

  • Purdue University: Amaranth
  • North Dakota State University: Amaranth Production Guide
  • University of Florida IFAS Extension: Amaranth
Keywords: planting amaranthus, amaranthus care, amaranthus site selection

About this Author

Sarah Morse recently graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in English language and literature. She has been freelancing for three months and got her start writing for an environmental website.