Growing quinoa in Washington State
Wieme, Rachel Amber, 1990-
Murphy, Kevin (Kevin Matthew), 1972-
Reganold, John P.
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Quinoa (Chenopodium quinoa Willd.) is gaining popularity as a relatively new crop for Washington State. It has been cultivated for thousands of years around its center of origin in South America, but recently has gained worldwide recognition for its nutritional benefits and adaptability to a variety of environments. Quinoa production in North America was very limited until recently. Quinoa has been successfully cultivated in regions such as the Canadian prairies, the San Luis Valley of Colorado, coastal areas in central California, Willamette Valley of Oregon, and the Olympic Peninsula in Washington. Other areas of Washington State could also provide the right climate and conditions for producing quinoa, such as the maritime climates found along much of the western region, the mountainous regions in central and northern areas of the state, and the Palouse River Basin on the eastern edge. Quinoa may be a suitable crop for a variety of cropping systems that can be found in Washington State. Quinoa is known for producing quality yields even in adverse conditions, including low fertility, throughout the world. For any system, quinoa can be a beneficial rotation crop to help break cereal disease cycles, and even the conventional market value is high compared to similar crop types.