Love-Lies-Bleeding Amaranth - Ropes of Beauty
Long, exotic ropes of rich, red flowers on spectacular, magnificent stalks. Impressive in the garden and cut fresh or dried.
Grown by Thomas Jefferson as early as 1786. Sometimes called Inca wheat, Amaranthus caudatus was a staple grain for the Incas and Aztecs. Nearly as important in their diets and as widespread in tropical areas of America as was maize (corn).
The cereal-like grain (about the size of a poppy seed) is high in protein, and high in lysine, an amino acid usually deficient in vegetables. In fact, amaranth seeds are extremely nutritious, with more protein than most cereals and a better balance of amino acids for the human diet than any other plant. The species is still cultivated in Bolivia, Peru and Ecuador, and now in India for its young leaves and seeds.
Achieves best color in full sun and poor soils.