Pigeon pea
Overview
 
The pigeon pea also known as tropical green pea, toor dāl or arhar dāl (India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

), ತೊಗರಿ ಬೇಳೆ (Kannada) kadios (Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

), or Congo pea or gungo pea (in Jamaica
Jamaica
Jamaica is an island nation of the Greater Antilles, in length, up to in width and 10,990 square kilometres in area. It is situated in the Caribbean Sea, about south of Cuba, and west of Hispaniola, the island harbouring the nation-states Haiti and the Dominican Republic...

), pois Congo (in Haiti
Haiti
Haiti , officially the Republic of Haiti , is a Caribbean country. It occupies the western, smaller portion of the island of Hispaniola, in the Greater Antillean archipelago, which it shares with the Dominican Republic. Ayiti was the indigenous Taíno or Amerindian name for the island...

),
gandul (in Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico , officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico , is an unincorporated territory of the United States, located in the northeastern Caribbean, east of the Dominican Republic and west of both the United States Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands.Puerto Rico comprises an...

),
gunga
pea
, or no-eye pea, [Cajanus cajan, synonyms Cajanus indicus Spreng. (Valder 1895) and Cytisus cajan (Crawfurd 1852)] is a perennial member of the family
Family (biology)
In biological classification, family is* a taxonomic rank. Other well-known ranks are life, domain, kingdom, phylum, class, order, genus, and species, with family fitting between order and genus. As for the other well-known ranks, there is the option of an immediately lower rank, indicated by the...

 Fabaceae
Fabaceae
The Fabaceae or Leguminosae, commonly known as the legume, pea, or bean family, is a large and economically important family of flowering plants. The group is the third largest land plant family, behind only the Orchidaceae and Asteraceae, with 730 genera and over 19,400 species...

.
Encyclopedia
The pigeon pea also known as tropical green pea, toor dāl or arhar dāl (India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

), ತೊಗರಿ ಬೇಳೆ (Kannada) kadios (Philippines
Philippines
The Philippines , officially known as the Republic of the Philippines , is a country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. To its north across the Luzon Strait lies Taiwan. West across the South China Sea sits Vietnam...

), or Congo pea or gungo pea (in Jamaica
Jamaica
Jamaica is an island nation of the Greater Antilles, in length, up to in width and 10,990 square kilometres in area. It is situated in the Caribbean Sea, about south of Cuba, and west of Hispaniola, the island harbouring the nation-states Haiti and the Dominican Republic...

), pois Congo (in Haiti
Haiti
Haiti , officially the Republic of Haiti , is a Caribbean country. It occupies the western, smaller portion of the island of Hispaniola, in the Greater Antillean archipelago, which it shares with the Dominican Republic. Ayiti was the indigenous Taíno or Amerindian name for the island...

),
gandul (in Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico , officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico , is an unincorporated territory of the United States, located in the northeastern Caribbean, east of the Dominican Republic and west of both the United States Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands.Puerto Rico comprises an...

),
gunga
pea
, or no-eye pea, [Cajanus cajan, synonyms Cajanus indicus Spreng. (Valder 1895) and Cytisus cajan (Crawfurd 1852)] is a perennial member of the family
Family (biology)
In biological classification, family is* a taxonomic rank. Other well-known ranks are life, domain, kingdom, phylum, class, order, genus, and species, with family fitting between order and genus. As for the other well-known ranks, there is the option of an immediately lower rank, indicated by the...

 Fabaceae
Fabaceae
The Fabaceae or Leguminosae, commonly known as the legume, pea, or bean family, is a large and economically important family of flowering plants. The group is the third largest land plant family, behind only the Orchidaceae and Asteraceae, with 730 genera and over 19,400 species...

. Pigeonpea also happens to be the first seed legume plant to have complete genome sequence.

Origins

The cultivation of the pigeon pea goes back at least 3500 years. The centre of origin is the eastern part of peninsular India, including the state of Orissa
Orissa
Orissa , officially Odisha since Nov 2011, is a state of India, located on the east coast of India, by the Bay of Bengal. It is the modern name of the ancient nation of Kalinga, which was invaded by the Maurya Emperor Ashoka in 261 BC. The modern state of Orissa was established on 1 April...

, where the closest wild relatives (Cajanus cajanifolia) occur in tropical deciduous woodlands. Archaeological finds of pigeonpea include those from two Neolithic sites in Orissa, Gopalpur and Golbai Sassan dating between 3400 and 3000 years ago, and sites in South India, Sanganakallu and Tuljapur Garhi, also dating back to 3400 years ago . From India it traveled to East Africa
East Africa
East Africa or Eastern Africa is the easterly region of the African continent, variably defined by geography or geopolitics. In the UN scheme of geographic regions, 19 territories constitute Eastern Africa:...

 and West Africa
West Africa
West Africa or Western Africa is the westernmost region of the African continent. Geopolitically, the UN definition of Western Africa includes the following 16 countries and an area of approximately 5 million square km:-Flags of West Africa:...

. There is was first encountered by Europeans, so it obtained the name Congo Pea. By means of the slave trade it came to the American continent, probably in the 17th century .

Cultivation

Today, pigeon peas are widely cultivated in all tropical and semitropical regions of both the Old
Old World
The Old World consists of those parts of the world known to classical antiquity and the European Middle Ages. It is used in the context of, and contrast with, the "New World" ....

 and the New Worlds. Pigeon peas can be of a perennial variety, in which the crop can last three to five years (although the seed yield drops considerably after the first two years), or an annual variety more suitable for seed production.

Pigeon peas are an important legume crop of rainfed agriculture in the semiarid tropics. The Indian subcontinent
Indian subcontinent
The Indian subcontinent, also Indian Subcontinent, Indo-Pak Subcontinent or South Asian Subcontinent is a region of the Asian continent on the Indian tectonic plate from the Hindu Kush or Hindu Koh, Himalayas and including the Kuen Lun and Karakoram ranges, forming a land mass which extends...

, Eastern Africa and Central America
Central America
Central America is the central geographic region of the Americas. It is the southernmost, isthmian portion of the North American continent, which connects with South America on the southeast. When considered part of the unified continental model, it is considered a subcontinent...

, in that order, are the world's three main pigeon pea-producing regions. Pigeon peas are cultivated in more than 25 tropical and subtropical countries, either as a sole crop or intermixed with cereal
Cereal
Cereals are grasses cultivated for the edible components of their grain , composed of the endosperm, germ, and bran...

s, such as sorghum
Sorghum
Sorghum is a genus of numerous species of grasses, one of which is raised for grain and many of which are used as fodder plants either cultivated or as part of pasture. The plants are cultivated in warmer climates worldwide. Species are native to tropical and subtropical regions of all continents...

 (Sorghum bicolor), pearl millet
Pearl millet
Pearl millet is the most widely grown type of millet. Grown in Africa and the Indian subcontinent since prehistoric times, it is generally accepted that pearl millet originated in Africa and was subsequently introduced into India. The center of diversity, and suggested area of domestication, for...

 (Pennisetium glaucum), or maize
Maize
Maize known in many English-speaking countries as corn or mielie/mealie, is a grain domesticated by indigenous peoples in Mesoamerica in prehistoric times. The leafy stalk produces ears which contain seeds called kernels. Though technically a grain, maize kernels are used in cooking as a vegetable...

 (Zea mays), or with other legumes, such as peanut
Peanut
The peanut, or groundnut , is a species in the legume or "bean" family , so it is not a nut. The peanut was probably first cultivated in the valleys of Peru. It is an annual herbaceous plant growing tall...

s (Arachis hypogaea). Being a legume, the pigeon pea enriches soil through symbiotic nitrogen fixation
Nitrogen fixation
Nitrogen fixation is the natural process, either biological or abiotic, by which nitrogen in the atmosphere is converted into ammonia . This process is essential for life because fixed nitrogen is required to biosynthesize the basic building blocks of life, e.g., nucleotides for DNA and RNA and...

.

The crop is cultivated on marginal land by resource-poor farmers, who commonly grow traditional medium- and long-duration (5–11 months) landrace
Landrace
A landrace is a local variety of a domesticated animal or plant species which has developed largely by natural processes, by adaptation to the natural and cultural environment in which it lives. It differs from a formal breed which has been bred deliberately to conform to a particular standard...

s. Short-duration pigeon peas (3–4 months) suitable for multiple cropping have recently been developed. Traditionally, the use of such input as fertilizers, weeding, irrigation, and pesticides is minimal, so present yield levels are low (average = 700 kg/ha). Greater attention is now being given to managing the crop because it is in high demand at remunerative prices.

Pigeon peas are very drought resistant, so can be grown in areas with less than 650 mm annual rainfall.

World production of pigeon peas is estimated at 46,000 km2. About 82% of this is grown in India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

. These days it is the most essential ingredient of animal feed used in West Africa, most especially in Nigeria, where it is also grown.

Uses

Pigeon peas are both a food crop (dried peas, flour, or green vegetable peas) and a forage/cover crop. They contain high levels of protein
Protein
Proteins are biochemical compounds consisting of one or more polypeptides typically folded into a globular or fibrous form, facilitating a biological function. A polypeptide is a single linear polymer chain of amino acids bonded together by peptide bonds between the carboxyl and amino groups of...

 and the important amino acid
Amino acid
Amino acids are molecules containing an amine group, a carboxylic acid group and a side-chain that varies between different amino acids. The key elements of an amino acid are carbon, hydrogen, oxygen, and nitrogen...

s methionine
Methionine
Methionine is an α-amino acid with the chemical formula HO2CCHCH2CH2SCH3. This essential amino acid is classified as nonpolar. This amino-acid is coded by the codon AUG, also known as the initiation codon, since it indicates mRNA's coding region where translation into protein...

, lysine
Lysine
Lysine is an α-amino acid with the chemical formula HO2CCH4NH2. It is an essential amino acid, which means that the human body cannot synthesize it. Its codons are AAA and AAG....

, and tryptophan
Tryptophan
Tryptophan is one of the 20 standard amino acids, as well as an essential amino acid in the human diet. It is encoded in the standard genetic code as the codon UGG...

. In combination with cereals, pigeon peas make a well-balanced human food. The dried peas may be sprouted briefly, then cooked, for a flavor different from the green or dried peas. Sprouting also enhances the digestibility of dried pigeon peas via the reduction of indigestible sugars that would otherwise remain in the cooked dried peas.

In India
India
India , officially the Republic of India , is a country in South Asia. It is the seventh-largest country by geographical area, the second-most populous country with over 1.2 billion people, and the most populous democracy in the world...

, split pigeon peas (toor dal
Dal
Dal is a preparation of pulses which have been stripped of their outer hulls and split. It also refers to the thick stew prepared from these, an important part of Indian, Nepali, Pakistani, Sri Lankan, and Bangladeshi cuisine...

) are one of the most popular pulses, being an important source of protein in a mostly vegetarian diet. In regions where it grows, fresh young pods are eaten as a vegetable in dishes such as sambar. In Ethiopia
Ethiopia
Ethiopia , officially known as the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, is a country located in the Horn of Africa. It is the second-most populous nation in Africa, with over 82 million inhabitants, and the tenth-largest by area, occupying 1,100,000 km2...

, not only the pods, but also the young shoots and leaves are cooked and eaten.

In some places, such as the Dominican Republic
Dominican Republic
The Dominican Republic is a nation on the island of La Hispaniola, part of the Greater Antilles archipelago in the Caribbean region. The western third of the island is occupied by the nation of Haiti, making Hispaniola one of two Caribbean islands that are shared by two countries...

 and Hawaii
Hawaii
Hawaii is the newest of the 50 U.S. states , and is the only U.S. state made up entirely of islands. It is the northernmost island group in Polynesia, occupying most of an archipelago in the central Pacific Ocean, southwest of the continental United States, southeast of Japan, and northeast of...

, pigeon peas are grown for canning and consumption. A dish made of rice and green pigeon peas (called moro de guandules) is a traditional food in Dominican Republic. Pigeon peas are also made as a stew, with plantain
Plantain
Plantain is the common name for herbaceous plants of the genus Musa. The fruit they produce is generally used for cooking, in contrast to the soft, sweet banana...

 balls. In Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico
Puerto Rico , officially the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico , is an unincorporated territory of the United States, located in the northeastern Caribbean, east of the Dominican Republic and west of both the United States Virgin Islands and the British Virgin Islands.Puerto Rico comprises an...

 arroz con gandules
Arroz con gandules
Arroz con gandules is a combination of rice, pigeon peas and pork, cooked in the same pot with Puerto Rican-style sofrito. This is the signature dish of Puerto Rican culture and also has become very popular throughout Latin America and the Caribbean....

is made with rice
Rice
Rice is the seed of the monocot plants Oryza sativa or Oryza glaberrima . As a cereal grain, it is the most important staple food for a large part of the world's human population, especially in East Asia, Southeast Asia, South Asia, the Middle East, and the West Indies...

 and pigeon peas and is a typical dish. Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago
Trinidad and Tobago officially the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago is an archipelagic state in the southern Caribbean, lying just off the coast of northeastern Venezuela and south of Grenada in the Lesser Antilles...

 and Grenada
Grenada
Grenada is an island country and Commonwealth Realm consisting of the island of Grenada and six smaller islands at the southern end of the Grenadines in the southeastern Caribbean Sea...

 have their own variant, called pelau, which includes either beef or chicken, and occasionally pumpkin and pieces of cured pig tail.

In Thailand
Thailand
Thailand , officially the Kingdom of Thailand , formerly known as Siam , is a country located at the centre of the Indochina peninsula and Southeast Asia. It is bordered to the north by Burma and Laos, to the east by Laos and Cambodia, to the south by the Gulf of Thailand and Malaysia, and to the...

, pigeon peas are grown as a host for scale insect
Scale insect
The scale insects are small insects of the order Hemiptera, generally classified as the superfamily Coccoidea. There are about 8,000 species of scale insects.-Ecology:...

s which produce lac
Lac
Lac is the scarlet resinous secretion of a number of species of insects, namely some of the species of the genera Metatachardia, Laccifer, Tachordiella, Austrotacharidia, Afrotachardina, and Tachardina of the superfamily Coccoidea, of which the most commonly cultivated species is Kerria lacca.The...

.

Pigeon peas are in some areas an important crop for green manure
Green manure
In agriculture, a green manure is a type of cover crop grown primarily to add nutrients and organic matter to the soil. Typically, a green manure crop is grown for a specific period of time , and then plowed under and incorporated into the soil while green or shortly after flowering...

, providing up to 40 kg nitrogen per hectare. The woody stems of pigeon peas can also be used as firewood, fencing and thatch.

Genome Sequence

The first draft of pigeon pea genome sequence was done by a group of 31 Indian scientists from the Indian Council of Agricultural Research
Indian Council of Agricultural Research
Indian Council of Agricultural Research , New Delhi, India is an autonomous organisation under the Department of Agricultural Research and Education, Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India...

 under the leadership of Nagendra Kumar Singh
Nagendra Kumar Singh
Dr Nagendra Kumar Singh is an eminent Indian agricultural scientist. He is presently a National Professor under ICAR at National Research Centre for Plant Biotechnology, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi. He was born in a small village called Rajapur in the Mau District of Uttar...

. The paper is published in one of the Indian journal.

Nature Biotechnology has published pigeonpea genome sequence led by International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) under the leadership of Dr Rajeev K Varshney
Rajeev Kumar Varshney
Rajeev Kumar Varshney is a geneticist currently working as Principal Scientist- Applied Genomics at International Crops Research Institute for the Semi-Arid Tropics , Patancheru, India and also Theme Leader - Comparative and Applied Genomics , , hosted at CIMMYT, Mexico.Rajeev Varshney has over 10...

through International Initiative for Pigeonpea Genomics (IIPG).

There is controversy between the mentioned publications


Eventually, pigeonpea crop will be benefited as these two genome sequences can be merged in near future.

External links

  • Crop Wild Relatives Gap Analysis Portal reliable information source on where and what to conserve ex-situ, regarding Cajanus genepool
  • (http://fcit.usf.edu/florida/docs/v/veg.htm)
  • (http://www.springerlink.com/content/g78774q222672082/fulltext.pdf)
  • (http://www.nrcpb.org/content/nrcpb-scientists-succeeded-decoding-arhar-dal-genome)
  • (http://www.icar.org.in/node/3815)
  • (http://www.nature.com/nbt/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nbt.2022.html)
  • (http://www.icrisat.org/newsroom/latest-news/happenings/happenings1492.htm#1)
  • (http://www.icrisat.org/newsroom/news-releases/icrisat-pr-2011-media20.htm)
The source of this article is wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.  The text of this article is licensed under the GFDL.
 
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