Invasive Species Compendium

Detailed coverage of invasive species threatening livelihoods and the environment worldwide

Abstract

Neglected crops: 1492 from a different perspective.

Abstract

This multiauthor book, consisting of 28 chapters, was published jointly by the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and the Botanical Garden of Córdoba, Spain as part of the Etnobotánica 92 Programme, held in Andalusia, Spain during September 1992. It contains a study of 65 crops, mostly of American origin, which for social, agronomic or biological reasons have lost their importance over the last 500 years. Some of them have been marginalized with respect to their original function or potential uses, whilst others have been forgotten. They are crop species that previously played a fundamental role in the agriculture and food supply of indigenous people and local communities. Their neglect was in many ways a suppression of the self sufficient way of life characterizing traditional cultures. An introduction covers genetic resources of the New World, and the introduction of flora from the Old World and causes of crop marginalization. The remaining chapters are divided between the following 4 sections covering: Agriculture in Mesoamerica, including domesticated plants and neglected crops, beans (Phaseolus spp.), cucurbits (Cucurbita spp.), chayote (Sechium edule), custard apples (Annona spp.), grain amaranths (Amaranthus spp.), sapote (Pouteria sapota), spanish plum, red mombin (Spondias purpurea) and tomatilo, husk-tomato (Physalis philadelphica); Andean agriculture, including neglected crops of the Andean region and Andean grains, legumes, tubers, roots and fruits; Amazonian and Caribbean agriculture, including the origin, decline and future of crops of the Amazonian and Orinoco regions, cupuaçu (Theobroma cacao), peach-palm (Bactris gasipaes), Paullinia spp. with economic potential, subtropical Myrtaceae, arazá (Eugenia stipitata), feijoa (Feijoa sellowiana), guinea arrowroot (Calathea allouia), maté (Ilex paraguariensis) and tannia, yautia (Xanthosoma sagittifolium); and Spain, including introduction of American flora to Spain as a possible cause for crop marginalization, grain legumes for animal feeds, traditional varieties of grain legumes for human consumption and neglected horticultural crops.