To say this was ttally unexpected would be a blatant lie, so let's say I expected this to happen :p

One thing I notices from my amaranthus caudatus tests last is that when the seed heads are forming the plants tend to become recumbent so they should be supported.
However I hoped I could avoid additional work by growing them at a high enough density.
Amaranthus caudatus plants sown this spring in the crowded plot mantained a thin but robust stem and did perfectly fine.
The second crop sown at the beginning of august on the other hand grew exceptionally fast and with thick watery stems.. and then a stom with strong winds cames and here's the outcome:

about 50% of the plants had been knocked down by the strong winds. The soil softened by by the rain didn't help at all. This soil is exceptionally fertile, so it encouraged excessive plant growth.. the plant outgrew beyond what their roots could sustain and high fertility actually turned out to be a very bad thing!

I actually expected it to be much worse than this.. and I also managed, thanks to poles and ropes, to pull back up half of the fallen plants thus reducing the damage to ~25%.

Seeing this disaster, my conclusions are as follows: crowding only works partially, the greatest advantage is that it minimizes weed growth.
Some kind of support is still needed, i.e. rows of poles spaced about 1m apart with strings at a height of about 70cm ~ 1m.
If the soil is moderately fertile, crowding is ok, otherwise sow in rows.

Now then, the plants are still flowering. I hope the seeds will ripen before the first frost comes!

If they manage to produce, drying the seeds will be a real problem :p

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