Lentils - growing and beneficial properties
At one time, peas and beans displaced lentils from the food market, which also belong to the legume family. Today, this unique product (in some way new to the domestic market) is returning to our kitchens. Lentils for its healing and taste qualities were known and widely used in food even in Ancient Egypt, replacing many types of vegetarian dishes. It was considered the food of the rich and was inaccessible to ordinary people. Lentils were loved for a variety of tastes, ease and speed of preparation, saturation of the body (feeling full) without overeating. We begin our acquaintance with this culture with its beneficial properties.
- Useful properties of lentils
- Lentil Botanical Description
- Biological Features of Lentils
- Lentil cultivation
- Harvesting and storage of lentils
Useful properties of lentils
Lentils - a product genetically adapted to the human digestive system. It contains a large number of complex proteins and carbohydrates, for a long time providing a feeling of satiety. There are only 250-295 Kcal per 100 gram dish of lentils. Easily digestible protein (60% by weight) may well replace meat, especially with diet.
This protein is absorbed better and faster, it does not remain undigested to rot in the stomach, creating heaviness and an unpleasant smell of belching. A portion of lentils satisfies the daily requirement of an adult for folic acid by 90%.
In 100 g of lentils, the fat content does not exceed 1 g. With so much fat, you can’t accumulate extra pounds, and you can be full, beautiful and healthy. Replace pasta and cereal with a lentil garnish, and you will see that it was not without reason that Esau gave his birthright for lentil soup.
To appreciate the beneficial properties of lentils, it is enough to list the content of macro- and micronutrients in beans of this crop: calcium, magnesium, sodium, potassium, phosphorus, chlorine, sulfur, iron, zinc, aluminum, manganese, copper, selenium, cobalt, chromium, molybdenum , iodine, boron, silicon, nickel, titanium.
Lentils contain vitamins "A", "PP", "E", "B1", "B2", "B5", "B6", "B9" (folic acid), beta-carotene.
A common phrase is that serotonin is found in chocolate, and it applies equally to lentils. Its beans contain the amino acid tryptophan, which in the human body is converted to serotonin, the so-called "vitamin of happiness." Serotonin affects the stability of the psyche, endurance, reduces the period of depressive states.
The healing properties of lentils
- Regardless of the growing conditions, lentils never accumulate nitrates, nitrites, radionuclides and other substances toxic to human health.
- Lentil fruits strengthen the heart muscle and participate in the process of hematopoiesis.
- Lower blood sugar. Lentil dishes are indispensable for diabetes.
- Mashed potatoes, soups, cereals are used in diet food in the treatment of ulcers and colitis.
- In lentils, even after thermal processing, isoflavones are stored - substances that are very important for maintaining women's health. They have a negative effect on cancer cells that provoke breast cancer, significantly reduce the risk of diseases of the cardiovascular system, improve the elasticity of arteries, which leads to a decrease in blood pressure, inhibit platelet activity, etc.
However, including lentils in food, do not forget about contraindications:
- with diseases of the kidneys and genitourinary system,
- with liver disease,
- with dysbiosis and gastrointestinal tract diseases,
- in the acute period of hemorrhoids,
- with gout
- able to lower the digestibility of certain vitamins and minerals.
Remember! Everything is useful in moderation. You can’t overeat lentils.
Why is this culture so attractive and why should it be introduced into the cultural revolution in its gardens and dachas?
Lentil Botanical Description
Lentil ordinary is an annual herbaceous plant with a height of 30 to 60 cm. In the process of growth and development, it forms a low bush with thin 4-sided erect, sometimes semi- or fully lodged stems. Stems of lentils are reddish in color, pubescent with short semi-rigid hairs. The leaves are complex paranoid with a different number of leaves.
At the base of the petiole is a simple or branched tendril. There are stipules, the shape and size of which (like the leaves) depends on the variety. Short lentil stalks carry 1-4 moth-shaped small flowers of white, less often blue-blue or violet-blue.
Lentil fruit is a one-nest bean, double-winged, rhomboid-elongated, prone to cracking when the crop overrides. Seeds (1-3 pieces) flattened or rounded. The color scheme of seeds is multicolored: yellow, green, pink, red, gray, brown, black, marbled pattern of dots, spots. The root of the lentil is small-branched.
Lentilsor Lentil food or Lentil cultivated (Lens culinaris) Is a species of the genus Lentil (Lens) Legumes (Fabaceae).
Biological Features of Lentils
Cultivated lentils are divided into 2 subspecies:
- coarse-grained (plate) lentils used as a food product,
- small-seeded lentils, which are mainly used to feed livestock, like protein-rich foods.
Unlike other legumes, lentils are relatively undemanding to heat. Seeds germinate at + 3 ... + 4 ° С. Fast and friendly seedlings appear on the 6-7th day when the soil is heated in a 10 cm layer to + 7 ... + 10 ° С. At lower temperatures, seedlings appear on day 8-12. Lentil sprouts withstand frosts to -3 ... -5 ° C. The optimum temperature during the growing season ranges from + 12 ... + 21 ° С.
Due to the slow growth before flowering, lentils require constant protection against weeds and increased moisture supply.
Lentil flowering begins on day 40-45. From flowering to harvesting, it surpasses other legumes in resistance to drought and high temperatures. This property allows the cultivation of lentils in arid areas.
Lentils grow well and form fairly high yields on medium fertility, loose, breathable soils: chestnut and light podzolic, loamy, sandy loam and ordinary chernozems rich in calcium compounds.
Lentils cannot tolerate heavy compacted soils (chernozems), with low air exchange, acidic, alkaline, with high occurrence of groundwater. On soils enriched with humus and nitrogen, it forms mainly a rich vegetative mass. Beans ripen unevenly, taste and quality indicators are reduced.
Lentils form nitrogen-fixing nodules on the roots, enriching the soil with nitrogen.
In order for lentils to grow and give a harvest to the joy of the owners, one more peculiarity must be taken into account. This is a culture of a long day and even a 9-10 hour day will not ensure normal development, and even more so the formation and maturation of the crop.
Place of lentils in the cultural turnover
If the garden is divided into beds and the order of planting is respected, then lentils are an excellent predecessor for potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, sweet peppers, corn, carrots, beets, garlic and other non-leguminous crops. In turn, lentils are not demanding on their predecessors, but the field must be clean from weeds. It is better to return it to its former place after 5-6 years, in order to avoid damage and accumulation of nematodes in the soil.
Lentil soil preparation
As a nitrogen accumulator, lentils cannot tolerate a high nitrogen content in the soil. Therefore, it is placed in the cultural turnover no earlier than 2-3 years after the introduction of manure. If in previous years only mineral fertilizers were applied to the site, then the soil must be produced in order to remove the accumulated acidity.
Since autumn, the soil is filled with phosphate (35-40 g / sq. M) and potash (20-30 g / sq. M) fertilizers and digged to a depth of 25-30 cm.
In spring on depleted soils, in addition to the autumn norm, it is possible to add 20 g / sq. m of phosphorus and potash fertilizers. If the soil belongs to the provided nutrients, then in the spring you can not fertilize.
Presowing preparation of lentil seeds
The duration of the growing season of varieties of lentils is from 2.5 to 4.0 months (75-115 days). To keep within the daylight hours, it is better to sprout lentil seeds before sowing, which will reduce the pre-emergence period.
2-3 layers of moisture-absorbing material are covered with a hard surface, moistened with warm water, spread seeds in a thin layer, covered with a damp cloth and placed in a warm place. 2-3 times a day, litter and seeds moisturize. With mass kilchivaniya seeds are ready for sowing.
As soon as the soil warms up in a 10 cm layer to + 7 ... + 8 ° C, you can start sowing lentils. Early crops form a higher yield and better withstand diseases and pests.
When sowing, soil moisture is very important. Therefore, in a dry spring, it is better to water the furrows before sowing.
Sowing lentil seeds is carried out in an ordinary way, leaving a distance in the row of 5-8 cm and between rows of 10-15 cm. The depth of seed placement is on average 5-6 cm. The sown area, for better adhesion to the soil, is slightly compacted. Shoots appear on the 7-12th day.
On infertile soils, lentils are fed twice. The first time they feed before flowering. The second - when loading beans. It is best to use “AVA” fertilizer for top dressing, which contains water-soluble forms of phosphorus and 9 trace elements, including boron and molybdenum. The lack of these trace elements causes the death of the growth point in the stems of the culture.
In addition, with a lack of molybdenum, the ability of bacteria to assimilate nitrogen in the air and fix it in nodules on the roots, and then in the seeds, decreases. Before blooming lentils, you can also make 200-300 g / pog. m of wood ash in the aisles for fine tillage AVA fertilizer can be used for spring application in the soil instead of phosphorus-potash.
Lentil Care and Watering
Leaving during the growing season consists in keeping the soil in a loose, weed-free state. During flowering, lentils from the wiki must be weeded, which clogs the plantings of the crop. Distinguishing them is very simple. The flowers on the wiki are dark pink, red-violet, and the lentils have white and light pink.
Water the lentils until flowering sparingly and if necessary. During the period of mass flowering, the culture is provided with a sufficient amount of moisture, but not over-moistened, as this leads to fungal and bacterial diseases of the root system and forming beans. Subsequently, lentils practically do not need watering.
Protection of lentils from diseases and pests
Lentils are most often damaged by fungal and bacterial diseases with increased soil and air humidity (ascochitosis, fusarium, rust, powdery mildew, anthracnose, etc.). Pests - various species of aphids, gamma scoop, meadow moth, lentil kernel, etc. The main protective measures are the correct and timely implementation of all agrotechnical measures when sowing and caring for the crop.
Of the preparations for treating plants, only biological preparations are allowed. Such biological preparations as phytosporin-M, Alirin-B, Trichodermin, and Trichophytum are especially effective in combating diseases and pests. Doses and treatment times are indicated in the recommendations for each drug. Biological products can be used at any phase of plant development, up to harvesting. They are absolutely harmless to humans and animals.
Harvesting and storage of lentils
Lentil beans ripen at the same time. Maturation begins with the lower beans. When beans are ripened in 2/3 of the bush, you can start harvesting. Bushes are pruned at ground level, leaving roots in the soil. Lentil bushes are harvested in the morning over dew to reduce losses from cracking beans. They are tied into small bundles and suspended under a roof in a draft for drying. After a few days, they begin to thresh.
Threshed lentil grain is cleaned of impurities, dried in the sun and immediately packed in glass or metal containers and tightly closed from moisture. Beans are hygroscopic, quickly gain moisture, begin to grow moldy and rot. If the beans are stored in cardboard boxes or canvas bags, it is best to place them in a dark, cool, dry room with good ventilation.