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Botanical Name: Avena ludoviciana
Synonyms: Avena ludoviciana Durieu; Avena sterilis
Habitat :Avena ludoviciana is native to Europe – Mediterranean, to S.W. Asia. An introduced weed in Britain. It grows on dry wasteland, cultivated ground and meadows, especially on heavier soils. A spreading weed in the Mediterranean where it is becoming a pest.
Avena ludoviciana is an upright annual weed. It has long broad leaves having bright green colour. During early stage its plants resemble with wheat and cultivated oat, but at mature stage this weed is taller than wheat (120cm).
Roots: Fibrous root system.
Leaves: The leaves are linear and alternate, blade 60cm long and 0.5 to 1.5cm wide; ligule membranous; sheath on lower leaves.
Inflorescence:Panicles are composed of green spikelets and each spikelet has 2 to 5 pedicelled brownish green flowers; disarticulation above the glumes; glumes equal, two-toothed at the apex; awn twisted, about 3 to 8cm long, upper parts bent sharply at right angles to the twisted parts.
Seeds:Seeds are brown and black covered with black hairs.
It is not frost tender. It is in flower from Jun to July, and the seeds ripen from Aug to October. The flowers are hermaphrodite (have both male and female organs) and are pollinated by Wind.
Annual plant, it reproduces by seeds. The first seed on the panicle had almost no dormancy and, thereafter, the seeds of the second, third and fourth positions germinated in turn. Seeds from the third and fourth positions did not germinate until the second and third years after sowing.
Suitable for: light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in heavy clay soil. Suitable pH: acid, neutral and basic (alkaline) soils. It cannot grow in the shade. It prefers dry or moist soil and can tolerate drought.
Succeeds in any moderately fertile soil in full sun. Prefers a poor dry soil. This species is a weed of cultivated land, its seeds are somewhat smaller than the cultivated oats and the yields are rather lower. Oats are in general easily grown plants but, especially when grown on a small scale, the seed is often completely eaten out by birds. Some sort of netting seems to be the best answer on a garden scale.
Seed – sow in situ in early spring or in the autumn. Only just cover the seed. Germination should take place within 2 weeks.
Seed – cooked. The seed ripens in the latter half of summer and, when harvested and dried, can store for several years. It has a floury texture and a mild, somewhat creamy flavour. It can be used as a staple food crop in either savoury or sweet dishes. The seed can be cooked whole, though it is more commonly ground into a flour and used as a cereal in all the ways that oats are used, especially as a porridge but also to make biscuits, sourdough bread etc. The seed can also be sprouted and eaten raw or cooked in salads, stews etc. The roasted seed is a coffee substitute.
Medicinal Uses: It is highly fibrous food, which is very good for constipation & some other forms of stomac disesses for regular bowel cleaning.
Fibre; Mulch; Paper; Thatching.
The straw has a wide range of uses such as for bio-mass, fibre, mulch, paper-making and thatching. Some caution is advised in its use as a mulch since oat straw can infest strawberries with stem and bulb eelworm.
Disclaimer : The information presented herein is intended for educational purposes only. Individual results may vary, and before using any supplement, it is always advisable to consult with your own health care provider.