Cicer arietinum L.
Sp. Pl. ed. 2: 738 (1753).


2n = 16, but 14, 24, 32, 33 have also been reported.

Vernacular names Chickpea, Bengal gram, garbanzo bean (En); pois chiche (Fr); Indonesia: kacang arab, kacang kuda; Thailand: thua hua chang.

Origin and geographic distribution Chickpea originated in south-eastern Anatolia (Turkey) and reached the Indian subcontinent before 2000 BC. India, Pakistan, Ethiopia, Turkey and Mexico have the largest areas under chickpea. Around the Mediterranean and in the Middle East local production is significant. In South--East Asia, chickpeas are only occasionally grown in areas with a dry season.

Uses Chickpea is mainly consumed as dry pulse. Green pods are shelled for the peas and eaten as snack or vegetable. The seed husks are used for stock and bird feed.

Production and international trade Chickpea is grown on 10 million ha of which 74.5% in India and 1.7% in Burma. World production is 5. 6 million t/year with India, Pakistan, Mexico, Ethiopia and Turkey as largest producers. In production the chickpea is the third non-oilseed grain legume in the world, after Phaseolus beans and peas.

Properties Dry seeds contain per 100 g edible portion: water 7 - 11 g, protein 1231 g, fat 410 g, carbohydrates 5868 g, fibre 35 g, ash 25 g. Energetic value averages 1520 kJ/100 g. Kabuli cultivars cook faster and have less dietary fibre than Desi cultivars with coloured seed coat. Fresh and sprouted seeds contribute Vitamin C to the diet. Seed weight varies between 5 and 75 g/100 seeds.

Ecology Chickpeas are long-day cool-season plants, and grow in semiarid conditons on residual moisture. Drought resistance varies from moderate to considerable. In the Mediterranean daylengths are increasing, in India decreasing during season. Optimum temperatures range from 1529 C. Mild winter or spring rains during the vegetative stage are advantageous. Rainstorms during flowering harm the crop, hence monsoon seasons are unsuitable. Soils need to be well drained, pH 57 or more, and salinity is hardly or not tolerated. Soils vary from sandy to sandy loam and black cotton soils.

Prospects In general chickpeas are pushed to marginal conditions. Despite its adaptability, average yields have not increased. In Indonesia and the Philippines, the crop is under experimentation. Chickpea is suited to relatively cool post-monsoon seasons. Rainy season crops only produce vegetative matter suitable for fodder. For seed production in South-East Asia, the cultivars from Sudan and Egypt may prove valuable.

  • Saxena, M.C. & Singh, K.B. (Editors), 1987. The Chickpea CAB International. ICARDA, Oxon. 409 pp.
  • Singh, K.B. & van der Maesen, L.J.G., 1977. Chickpea bibliography 1930 to 1974. 3146 refs.

Author: L.J.G. van der Maesen

Source of This Article:
van der Maesen, L.J.G., 1989. Cicer arietinum L.In: van der Maesen, L.J.G. & Somaatmadja, S. (Editors). Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 1: Pulses. Pudoc, Wageningen, The Netherlands, pp. 42-43

Recommended Citation:
van der Maesen, L.J.G., 1989. Cicer arietinum L.[Internet] Record from Proseabase. van der Maesen, L.J.G. & Somaatmadja, S. (Editors).
PROSEA (Plant Resources of South-East Asia) Foundation, Bogor, Indonesia.
Accessed from Internet: 07-Aug-2020