sorghum


sorghum
/sawr"geuhm/, n.
1. a cereal grass, Sorghum bicolor (or S. vulgare), having broad, cornlike leaves and a tall, pithy stem bearing the grain in a dense terminal cluster.
2. the syrup made from sorgo.
[1590-1600; < NL < It sorgo (see SORGO)]

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Cereal grain plant of the family Poaceae (or Gramineae), probably native to Africa, and its edible starchy seeds.

All types raised chiefly for grain belong to the species Sorghum vulgare, which includes varieties of grain sorghums and grass sorghums (grown for hay and fodder), and broomcorn (used in making brooms and brushes). The strong grass usually grows 2–8 ft (0.5–2.5 m) or higher. The seeds are smaller than those of wheat. Though high in carbohydrates, sorghum is of lower feed quality than corn. Resistant to drought and heat, sorghum is one of Africa's major cereal grains. It is also grown in the U.S., India, Pakistan, and northern and northeastern China. Substantial quantities are also grown in Iran, the Arabian Peninsula, Argentina, Australia, and southern Europe. The grain is usually ground into meal for porridge, flatbreads, and cakes.

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grain
      cereal grain plant of the family Gramineae (Poaceae), probably originating in Africa, and its edible starchy seeds. All types raised chiefly for grain belong to the species Sorghum vulgare, which includes varieties of grain sorghums and grass sorghums, grown for hay and fodder, and broomcorn, used in making brooms and brushes. Grain sorghums include durra, milo, shallu, kafir corn, Egyptian corn, great millet, and Indian millet. In India sorghum is known as jowar, cholam, or jonna; in West Africa as Guinea corn; and in China as kaoliang. Sorghum is especially valued in hot and arid regions for its resistance to drought and heat.

      The strong grass usually grows to a height of 2 to 8 feet (0.5 to 2.5 m), sometimes reaching as high as 15 feet (4.5 m). Stalks and leaves are coated with a white waxy bloom, and the pith, or central portion, of the stalks of certain varieties is juicy and sweet. The leaves are about 2 inches (5 cm) broad and 2 1/2 feet (0.75 m) long, and the panicles, or flower clusters, range from loose to dense, bearing 800–3,000 kernels. The seeds vary widely among different types in colour, shape, and size, but they are smaller than those of the wheat plant.

      Sorghum is of a lower feed quality than corn (maize). It is high in carbohydrates, with 10 percent protein and 3.4 percent fat, and contains calcium and small amounts of iron, vitamin B1, and nicotinic acid. The grain is usually ground into a meal that is made into porridge, flatbreads, and cakes. The characteristic strong flavour can be reduced by processing. The grain is also used in making edible oil, starch, dextrose (a sugar), paste, and alcoholic beverages. The stalks are used as fodder and building materials. Sweet sorghums, or sorgos, are grown mainly in the United States and southern Africa for forage and for syrup manufacture. In some countries the sweet stalks are chewed.

      Sorghum, one of Africa's major cereal grains, is also cultivated in the United States, India, Pakistan, and northern and northeastern China. Substantial quantities are grown in Iran, the Arabian Peninsula, Argentina, Australia, and southern Europe.

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Universalium. 2010.

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Look at other dictionaries:

  • Sorghum — Sorgho …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Sorghum — × almum Sorghum almum Sorghum bicolor Sorghum caudatum Sorghum × drummondii Sorghum halepense Sorghum propinquum El sorgo o zahína (Sorghum vulgare o Sorghum bicolor) es una hierba (Familia Poaceae), cuyas semillas se utilizan para hacer harina y …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • SORGHUM — SORGHUM, the summer plant Sorghum cernicum, called in Arabic durra or doḥ n. The Arabs of Israel sow it extensively, both for fodder and for flour, from which they make pittah ( flat bread ). It is thought to have been introduced into Ereẓ Israel …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Sorghum — Sor ghum, n. [NL., probably of Chinese origin.] (Bot.) (a) A genus of grasses, properly limited to two species, {Sorghum Halepense}, the Arabian millet, or Johnson grass (see {Johnson grass}), and {S. vulgare}, the Indian millet (see {Indian… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Sorghum — Pers. (Mohrenhirse, fälschlich Moorhirse), Gattung der Gramineen (oder Gruppe der Gattung Andropogon L.), ein oder mehrjährige, große, breitblätterige Gräser mit aus Trauben zusammengesetzten, derbästigen Rispen, breit lanzettlichen, zuletzt… …   Meyers Großes Konversations-Lexikon

  • sorghum — 1590s, Indian millet, from Mod.L. Sorghum, the genus name, from It. sorgo a tall cereal grass, probably from M.L. surgum, suricum (12c.), perhaps a variant of L. syricum Syrian, as in Syricum (gramen) (grass) of Syria, from Syria, a possible… …   Etymology dictionary

  • sorghum — [sôr′gəm] n. [ModL < It sorgo < dial. soreg < L syricus, Syrian: hence, orig., Syrian grass] 1. any of a genus (Sorghum) of tropical grasses that have solid stems bearing large panicles of spikelets with numerous small, glossy grains:… …   English World dictionary

  • Sorghum — (S. Pers.), Pflanzengattung aus der Familie der Gramineae Andropogoneae, 23 Kl. 1 Ordn. L.; Arten: S. vulgare (Sorghogras, Sorghohoniggras, Sorghorostgras, Mohrhirse, Durra, Kaffernhirse), mit mehr als mannshohem, fingersdickem Stängel,… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

  • Sorghum — Pers., Sorgho, Pflanzengattg. der Gramineen. S. vulgāre Pers. (Moor oder Mohrenhirse, Kaffern , Guinea , Negerkorn, Durrha, Durragras [Abb. 1763; a Ährchen, b Fruchtrispe, c Rispenästchen, d Fruchtährchen]), in Afrika als Brotkorn, in mehrern… …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Sorghum — Sorghum, Sorgho, s. Moorhirse …   Herders Conversations-Lexikon

  • sorghum — ► NOUN ▪ a cereal native to warm regions, grown for grain and animal feed. ORIGIN Italian sorgo, perhaps from a variant of Latin syricum Syrian …   English terms dictionary


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