Economic Botany

, Volume 38, Issue 1, pp 65–82 | Cite as

Panicum sonorum in Sonoran Desert agriculture

  • Gary Nabhan
  • J. M. J. de Wet


Evidence of prehistoric domestication of plants native to southwestern United States is rare. Presented here are archaeological, historic and contemporary ethnobotanical data suggesting that a native grain, Panicum sonorum,was harvested, sown and culturally selected in the Sonoran Desert Region. This indicator crop, other new clarifications of indigenous crops, and water management practices all point to the distinctiveness of the region’s agricultural complex. As redefined here, the Sonoran Desert Agricultural Region is diverse in both native crops and in cultivars of introduced crops originating elsewhere.


Economic Botany Amaranth Sonoran Desert Tepary Bean Barnyard Millet 
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Copyright information

© The New York Botanical Garden 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • Gary Nabhan
    • 1
  • J. M. J. de Wet
    • 2
  1. 1.Office of Arid Lands StudiesUniversity of Arizona; and Native Seeds/SEARCHTucson
  2. 2.Department of AgronomyUniversity of IllinoisUrbana

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