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Peanuts belong to the legume family and is one of a small number of plants that have a geocarpy - the formation of fruits on the ground.
Origin and distribution
It is believed that the name comes from the Greek word for spider. It seems that the plant got such a name due to the similarity of the net pattern of its fruits with the web.
The birthplace of the plant is South America, it was from here that he migrated to Japan and India, and then to Madagascar and the Philippine Islands. Peanuts came to China thanks to the Portuguese in the 16th century, who founded a colony in Cato. In Africa, this culture was introduced in the 16th century with slave ships. It is believed that for the first time, peanut fruits were imported from Brazil to Guinea. The secondary genetic centers of the plant are considered to be Congo, Nigeria and Senegal, whose locals extract edible oil, and its sowing area immediately increased significantly.
The first country to cultivate peanuts for export is Senegal. From China and India, culture also reached Spain, Italy, and France, where it received an interesting name - "Chinese nut". In the USA, it appeared only in the 19th century after the Civil War. At that time, cotton was badly damaged by the cotton weevil, and many farms switched to growing peanuts.
In Russia, peanuts first fell in 1792 from Turkey. Now the plant is planted in Central Asia, southern Ukraine, Transcaucasia, and the North Caucasus.
General Description of Peanuts
Peanuts are an annual plant presented in the form of a bush about 75 cm high, with small yellow flowers. Two forms of peanuts are distinguished in the culture: creeping and bush. This plant is distinguished by a developed, branching root, which penetrates the ground by 1.5 m. There are varieties with erect shoots, in others they creep, in the third they are completely mixed. The stem of the peanut is branched, in creeping varieties reaches 15-25 m, in standing ones - 60 cm. The branches of the bushes are slightly pubescent.
The leaves are paranoid, their upper side is glossy, the lower side is slightly pubescent.
Flowers characteristic moth type, yellow-orange, self-pollinating.
Underground flowers are small in size, have no color, also self-pollinating. Peanut beans are cocoon-shaped with a fragile, dark or light brown, red shell. Seeds are elongated-oval or rounded.
This plant can be grown both in seedling and in open ground. For planting, you need to prepare seeds and pieces of beans.
- Seedlings. Planting of seeds begins in April in pre-prepared cups to a depth of 3 cm. The soil should be fluffy and loose, since the culture prefers soft soil. Glasses with seeds are exposed on a sunny windowsill, and watered moderately. Landing is made in early June. But before you produce it, you need to prepare the bed well in advance: it needs to be digged, dried, fluffed up and completely eliminated weeds and their rhizomes. When planting, a distance of 60-70 cm between the rows and 15-20 between the plants themselves should be observed.
- Open ground. You can plant seeds in open ground when the temperature rises to 20 degrees, and the earth warms up to 15 degrees. Such conditions most often already exist in early May. advises to pay attention to the looseness of the soil, since when the ovaries are formed, the fruits penetrate underground and “dig in” there, ripening underground. After sowing seeds and after the appearance of the first seedlings, you need to carefully protect peanuts from crows and thrushes, which can destroy the entire crop. The planting scheme is the same as in the seedling method.
- Choosing a place to land. Peanuts are very fond of light, therefore, and the site must be selected well-lit by the sun throughout the day. Although, nevertheless, he can easily tolerate a slight shading.
Care for this plant consists in regular loosening of the soil, the fight against diseases and various pests, as well as thorough weeding. If the area where peanuts are grown is overgrown with weeds, then a good harvest can hardly be expected. It is best to weed after watering or precipitation.
After the formation of the ovaries, peanuts, like potatoes, spud.
The best predecessors for the plant will be cabbage, tomatoes, potatoes, cucumbers.
However, as for other legumes.
Watering should be moderate so that the land does not dry out. Peanuts love moisture, but excessively moistened soils will not suit him. However, when a plant blooms, watering increases - 3-4 times a month.
Peanuts respond favorably to the application of mineral fertilizers, carried out three times per season, especially during periods of ripening of leaves, fruit setting and budding.
Diseases and Pests
Like other legumes, peanuts are susceptible to attacks by caterpillars, aphids and thrips. Sometimes it also affects the following diseases: stem and root rot, viral diseases, fungal spotting.
It’s quite difficult to determine the exact time of the harvest, as peanut beans ripen underground. Most often this is done at an air temperature of 10 degrees. To check, you can dig one bean and inspect it. Harvest should be harvested in dry weather, then the bush is easily pulled out of the soil, and the leaves on it have not yet yellowed. The bush is dug up and removed from the soil. If the harvesting time was missed, then more fruits will remain in the ground. It is better to place the bush for drying in a sunny place or in a place with good ventilation.
Dry for 5 days. If the beans dry out well, they will rattle rather loudly when shaken.
We grow peanuts on our site
Several varieties of peanuts are often found on sale, the assortment of which changes quite often. In our country and in Ukraine, most often zoned varieties are used for cultivation, which have shown themselves well in certain local conditions. For example, these include Krasnodar 14, Stepnyak, Ukrainian Valencia, Krasnodar 13, Valencia 433. The Klinsky variety intended for the steppe zone of Ukraine was widely used.
The use of peanuts
Groundnuts, or peanuts, are grown to produce seeds of edible vegetable oil, which is contained in the seeds of the plant about 53%. In terms of oil content, peanuts are second only to soy. Peanut butter is most commonly used in confectionery and canning industries. Ground plant seeds are added to chocolate. Toasted seeds are used as food, and in fragmented form are often used in the preparation of confectionery. Tops and cake of peanuts goes to animal feed.