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Chickpea

Cicer arietinum

Bengal gram, Garbanzo bean, Indian pea (Eng.), Kekerertjie (Afr.)

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Chickpeas are cool season annuals so in warmer sones they are planted in the winter. The ability to add nitrogen to the soil makes chickpea an excellent companion or rotation crop. Uses include culinary, fodder and traditional medicine.

Planning

Difficulty
Easy
Flowering time
Summer, Winter
Fruiting time
Summer, Winter

Harvesting

Chickpeas will be ready for harvest about 100 days after planting. Chickpeas for fresh eating can be picked when pods are still immature and green. Eat them like snap beans. For dried chickpeas, harvest the entire plant when the leaves have withered.

Propagation

Seed
Sow direct in cooler climates in spring or in autumn in war climates. Space 7-13 cm apart and a sow 4-5 cm deep. Germination time is between 10-14 days. Do not soak seed before sowing and avoid heavy watering.

Special features

Attracts useful insects
Attracts insects like bees and butterflies
Crop rotation
Nitrogen fixing plant, building up soil condition before and after other vegetable crops.

Geography

Origin
Mediterranean, Turkey, Africa, Southern and Western Asia.
Natural climate
Tropical, Sub-tropical and Warm Temperate

Environment

Light
Full Sun, Partial Sun
Soil moisture
Moist
Soil type
Clay, Loam, Sand
Soil PH preference
Alkaline
Frost hardiness
Hardy

Uses

Edible
Seeds are treasured by vegetarians adding valueable proteins to their diet.
Notes
Culinary, beverages, fodder, traditional medicine

Personality

Family
Fabaceae
Flower colour
White or Lilac to Violet.
Scent
None

Problems

Chickpeas are susceptible to blight, mosaic, and anthracnose. For prevention plant disease-resistant varieties and keep the garden clean and free of debris. Do not handle plants when they are wet so as not to spread fungal spores. Avoid growing in the same location more than every three years will reduce soil-borne diseases.

Companion plants

Potatoes, Cucumbers, Corn, Strawberries, Celery, Summer Savory

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