This species was probably derived in cultivation from Setaria viridis[
Alopecurus caudatus Thunb.
Chaetochloa germanica (Mill.) Smyth
Chaetochloa italica (L.) Scribn.
Chamaeraphis italica (L.) Kuntze
Echinochloa erythrosperma Roem. & Schult.
Echinochloa intermedia Roem. & Schult.
Ixophorus italicus (L.) Nash
Oplismenus intermedius (Hornem.) Kunth
Panicum aegyptiacum Roem. & Schult.
Panicum asiaticum Schult. & Schult.f.
Panicum chinense Trin.
Panicum compactum Kit.
Panicum elongatum Salisb.
Panicum erythrospermum Vahl ex Hornem.
Panicum germanicum Mill.
Panicum germanicum Willd.
Panicum globulare (J.Presl) Steud.
Panicum glomeratum Moench
Panicum intermedium Vahl ex Hornem.
Panicum italicum L.
Panicum itieri (Delile) Steud.
Panicum macrochaetum (Jacq.) Link
Panicum maritimum Lam.
Panicum melfrugum Schult. & Schult.f.
Panicum miliaceum Blanco
Panicum moharicum (Alef.) E.H.L.Krause
Panicum panis (Jess.) Jess.
Panicum pumilum Link
Panicum serotinum Trin.
Panicum setaceum Trin.
Panicum setosum Trin.
Panicum sibiricum Roem. & Schult.
Panicum verticillatum majus Thunb.
Panicum viride italicum (L.) Asch. & Graebn.
Panicum vulgare Wallr.
Paspalum germanicum (Mill.) Baumg.
Penicillaria italica (L.) Oken
Pennisetum germanicum (Mill.) Baumg.
Pennisetum italicum (L.) R.Br
Pennisetum macrochaetum J.Jacq.
Setaria asiatica Rchb.
Setaria californica Kellogg
Setaria compacta Schur
Setaria erythrosperma (Vahl ex Hornem.) Spreng.
Setaria erythrosperma Hornem. ex Rchb.
Setaria flavida Hornem. ex Rchb.
Setaria germanica (Mill.) P.Beauv.
Setaria globularis J.Presl
Setaria itieri Delile
Setaria japonica Pynaert
Setaria macrochaeta (Jacq.) Schult.
Setaria maritima (Lam.) Roem. & Schult.
Setaria melinis Link ex Steud.
Setaria moharica Menabde & Erizin
Setaria multiseta Dumort.
Setaria pachystachya BorbÃ¡s
Setaria panis Jess.
Setaria persica Rchb.
Setaria violacea Hornem. ex Rchb.
Setaria viridis italica (L.) Briq.
Setariopsis italica (L.) Samp.
Common Name: Foxtail Millet
Cultivated plant in Oslo botanical garden, Oslo, Norway
Photograph by: Daderot
Foxtail millet is a fast-growing, erect, clump-forming annual grass with few, if any, side branches; it can grow from 30 - 150cm tall. The root system is dense, with thin wiry adventitious roots[
The plant is one of the oldest cultivated crops, being in cultivation from about 5,000 BC in India and China , from where cultivation has spread to many areas of the world[
]. It is still often cultivated for its edible seed in tropical to warm temperate areas[
]. It also has a range of local medicinal uses. The plant is mainly grown for home consumption, but is also traded internationally on a small scale[
Asia? The plant was derived through cultivation and its origin is obscure.
Not known in a truly wild situation.
A plant of the tmperate and subtropical zones, amenable to cultivation in the tropics where it is found at elevations up to 2,000 metres. It grows best in areas where annual daytime temperatures are within the range 16 - 26Â°c, but can tolerate 5 - 35Â°c[
]. It is intolerant of frost[
]. It prefers a mean annual rainfall in the range 500 - 700mm, but tolerates 300 - 4,000mm[
Grows best in a sunny position[
]. Succeeds in any well-drained soil from light sands to heavy clays, preferring fertile conditions[
]. Established plants have a deep root system and are very drought resistant[
]. Prefers a pH in the range 6 - 6.8, tolerating 5.5 - 8.3[
Plants can mature a crop in 60 - 120 days from sowing the seed, depending on conditions and variety[
Seed yields of 800 - 900 kilos per hectare can be attained from rain-fed crops; this has been increased to 1,800 kilo in China with selected forms and a rainfall of less 900mms[
]. Experimental yields of 11 tonnes per hectare have been obtained with irrigation[
There are many named varieties[
Seed - cooked[
]. It can be eaten as a sweet or savoury food in all the ways that rice is used, or ground into a flour and made into porridge, cakes, puddings etc[
]. It is considered a nutritious food and is often recommended for the elderly and for pregnant women[
]. The seed can also be sprouted before it is used, when it will become somewhat sweeter[
]. Most cultivars are non-glutinous and are thus suitable for the diet of people with coeliac disease[
]. A nutritional analysis is available[
The germinated seed of yellow-seeded cultivars is astringent, digestive, emollient and stomachic[
]. It is used in the treatment of dyspepsia, poor digestion and food stagnancy in the abdomen[
White seeds are refrigerant and used in the treatment of cholera and fever[
Green seeds are diuretic and strengthening to virility[
The plant can be sown in contour strips for erosion control[
The straw is used for thatching and bedding in places such as India[
The bran contains up to 9% oil and can be used for oil extraction[
Seed - it can be sown in situ. Seeds can be difficult to germinate in heavy clay soils[
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