Buckwheat

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Common buckwheat
Illustration Fagopyrum esculentum0.jpg
Scientific classification
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Genus:
Fagopyrum
Binomial name
Fagopyrum esculentum

Buckwheat (or common buckwheat) is a plant whose seeds may be used as a cereal.[1] Buckwheat is not a true grass. It is not related to wheat, because wheat is a true grass, and buckwheat is not.

Buckwheat seeds look like small beech tree seeds. Both seeds have three sides. Beech is also called buck, which is how buckwheat got its name.

Instead, buckwheat is related to sorrel, knotweed, and rhubarb. Buckwheat is referred to as a pseudocereal because its seeds are used in cooking the same as cereals, because they have complex carbohydrates.

The cultivation of buckwheat grain declined sharply in the 20th century with the adoption of nitrogen fertilizer which increased the productivity of other staples.


Buckwheat plants
Buckwheat grains (seeds)

References[change | change source]

  1. Agriculture Canada. (1978). Growing buckwheat. Ottawa Canada: Canadian Department of Agriculture.