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Sorghum

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Sorghum
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Sorghum.jpg



Scientific classification
Kingdom:Plantae
Division:Magnoliophyta
Class:Liliopsida
Order:Poales
Family:Poaceae
Genus:Sorghum
Species

S. almum
S. bicolor
S. caudatum
S. halepense
S. propinquum

Hybrids

S. × almum
S. × drummondii

Sorghum, also known as jowar, (Sorghum vulgare or Sorghum bicolor) is a grass (Family Poaceae) which is used for food, fodder, and the production of alcoholic beverages. It is drought tolerant and especially important in arid regions. It is an important food crop in Africa, Central America, and South Asia, and is the fifth major cereal crop grown in the world (470,000 km² harvested in 1996). African slaves introduced sorghum into the U.S. in the early 17th century, where most of the world's sorghum is now produced.

Although wild varieties of Sorghum are attested as early as 8000 BP in the Nilotic regions of southern Egypt and the Sudan, the location of its true domestication within East Africa is still speculative. It is widely held that genetic separation of domesticated S. bicolor from its progenitor did not occur much before the B.C./A.D. changeover somewhere in East Africa, possibly the Ethiopian highlands, but more likely further west. The presence of true domesticated S. bicolor is claimed much earlier than this (2900-1700 B.C.) in India, Oman, and Yemen, although the identity of the remains as full domesticates is still disputed. It is well adapted to growth in hot, arid or semi-arid areas. The many subspecies are divided into four groups - grain sorghums, grass sorghums (for pasture and hay), sweet sorghums (formerly called "Guinea corn", used to produce sorghum syrups), and broom corn (for brooms and brushes).

Bhakri, a variety of unleavened bread made from sorghum, is the staple diet in many parts of India such as Maharashtra and northern Karnataka.

In China, sorghum is the most important ingredient for the production of distilled beverages such as Maotai.

References

  • ITIS 42106 (http://www.itis.usda.gov/servlet/SingleRpt/SingleRpt?search_topic=TSN&search_value=42106) 2002-09-22

External links

de:Sorghum eo:Sorgo fr:Sorgho ja:モロコシ pl:Sorgo pt:Sorgo ru:Сорго zh:高粱

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