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Quinoa and/or amaranth as fodder

 
                            
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I've continued to seek out plants that could potentially work as fodder. I've come across some interesting reading regarding both Quinoa and amaranth. With the exception of wild pigweed, I'm not familiar with either at all. Is there anyone who has actual experience with these? What are your thoughts on using them as livestock fodder? Do livestock like them (palatability)? Have you experienced good growth rates? Prolific? Productive? What about ease of growing? Any thoughts on harvesting and storing for winter? Are either of these plants you would recommend as fodder? Are there other plants you would consider first, or feel are better choices?
 
Brian Bales
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Quinoa would probably be to much work to warrant its use as livestock feed. Amaranth on the other hand has possibilities. The leaves are edible and can be fed throughout the growing season (just don't over harvest from an individual stalk), or grow a seed and a leaf variety together. Some varieties such as golden giant can supposedly produce up to a pound of seed per plant. You could even possibly do a 3 sisters thing and grown beans up the stalks and squash below them. All these have potential as animal (and human) feed.
 
Irene Kightley
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Location: South West France
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I dot Amaranth around the veg garden in between herbs and summer veg.



It grows quite slowly until the end of summer when it puts on an a final spurt of growth, the heads fill out and it looks spectacular.



I bend over the thick branches one by one in autumn for my chickens and uproot individual stalks for the the pigs who love it and I'm sure the goats would too if I grew enough.



I've tried growing quinoa but with no success.
 
                            
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What beautiful photos!

I am just learning about these things and have read a couple of places that quinoa is hard to grow, others that it is easy. Don't know what to think about it.
 
Kay Bee
Posts: 471
Location: Jackson County, OR (Zone 7)
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the saponins associated with raw quinoa seed may or may not be an issue for use as livestock fodder. 

what about grain-type sorghum as fodder?
 
Tyler Ludens
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I've grown Golden Giant amaranth and it was remarkably productive.

 
                            
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re: Sorghum... I don't know! Thank you very much for the suggestion, I'll check into it.

So far, nettles are at the top of my list... but I'd like to establish some plant guilds as well as different types of plants as resources (different guilds). I'm just learning about all of this.. it's all new to me. I appreciate everyone's patience.
 
                              
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The Tohono O'odham (SW native american tribe) use dried amaranth as hay for livestock.
 
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