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  1. Key Resource 2018-02-09 Traditional diets included a wide variety of ingredients from myriad wild and domesticated plants. Regional cuisines were shaped by native species in their local environment and by gradually-adopted plants from distant places. The modern global food system and market pressures have reversed this...  
  2. Key Resource 2006-01-01 Dr. Martin Price, co-founder of ECHO and former head of ECHO’s Agricultural Resources Department, has said, “I would consider chaya to be one of the five most important underutilized food plants ECHO distributes. I give it this rank because of its ability to thrive in both arid and rainy regions,...  
  3. Abelmoschus caillei originated and is now grown mostly in West and Central Africa, where it has become an important vegetable crop. This species of okra is particularly popular with subsistence farmers as it can produce a food crop year round, has a higher market value as it is available in the...  
  4. Collards are a cruciferous crop (cabbage family) grown for the leaves. The wide, smooth, blue-green leaves of collards have a spinach-like flavor and are the highest in nutrients of the dark green, leafy vegetables.  
  5. Cushaw pumpkins are a herbaceous, vining, winter squash grown for the edible flesh and seeds. Flowers and tender shoots are also edible. The seeds are high in oil and protein and can be eaten roasted or ground up for an ingredient in sauces. The flesh is eaten as a vegetable and can be used in...  
  6. Peas are among the oldest cultivated plants. Carbonized seed remains have been identified as being 7,000 to 9,000 years old. The edible pod forms are thought to be of recent development. Edible podded pea plants produce large (up to 4 inches long) tasty pods with immature seeds that may be eaten...  
  7. Okra probably originated in North East Africa growing along rivers and bodies of water at 0 - 1000m elevation. It remains widely grown around the world for its nutritious pods, leaves, and fiber. It prefers hot temperatures with plenty of water. Regular picking of the pods triggers continuous...  
  8. A vining annual vegetable crop. The plant produces a wavy cucumber-like fruit that is harvested immature and cooked like a squash. This crop is well suited to growth in the humid lowland tropics. The delicate vines need a trellis. The mature fruit turns orange or red when ripe and can be used in...  
  9. Egusi melon is a fast-spreading creeping vine. The taxonomy is not clear but the ECHO seed comes from what is probably a variety or sub-species of watermelon. The white, bitter fruits are inedible; instead it is grown for the seeds which contain 50% oil and 30% protein and can be ground into a...  
  10. Wax gourds are vining plants that produce large, round wax-covered fruits. Originally from Southeast Asia, the species is grown in many lowland tropical environments up to 1,300 m in elevation. The long vines may be trained along trellises or up buildings where they produce fruit. Fruits are...