EDIBLE AND USEFUL HERBACEOUS PLANTS – Ross Island Food Forest

pigeon_pea_podsCajanus cajan
“Pigeon Pea”
2-4m legume
Cultivated for over 4,000 years, seeds found in Egyptian burial vaults. Believed to have originated in India which remains the centre of its use as a staple food. Dehulled, split seed , or dhal, is rehydrated and cooked with spices to form a thick broth. Dahl contains about 20% crude protein, about 50% starch and if eaten with cereal grains, provides a balanced intake of amino acids. It is also a valuable stock feed. Like Sesbania, Pigeon Pea functions as a pioneer but differs in that it lives for several years and will only nodulate with Rhizobium sp. bacteria. It harbours Pseudomonas sp. bacteria on its leaves which are believed to play a role in cloud seeding.


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