is the fourth most important grain crop in the
world. In the United States it is used primarily
as animal feed, but in the rest of the world it
is an important food crop. It may well be the
most ancient of cultivated plants.
is a spice known for its pleasant,
sweet taste and odor. It comes from the inner
bark of branches of the cinnamon tree, which is
native to the tropical regions of Madagascar, Sri
Lanka, and southwestern India.
is the drink made from the roasted and ground
beans of the coffee tree. Before its use as a
beverage 700 years ago, coffee was a food, then a
wine, and then a medicine.
is the most valuable crop grown in the United
States, and one of the four most important crops
in the world. In addition to its importance as a
food crop, corn is also used in the manufacture
of inedible products, including paper, adhesives,
cosmetics, soaps, plastics, and ethanol.
is a natural vegetable fiber of great economic
importance as a raw material for cloth and other
products. In fact, cotton can be made into more
kinds of products -- from diapers to explosives
-- than any other fiber.
make up one of the largest and most varied
families in the plant kingdom. They range from
the short kinds found in lawns to woody, tall
bamboos from which some furniture is made. All
grain crops (corn, oats, wheat, etc.) are types
is a perennial herb in the same
family as peas and beans. Licorice roots contain
a chemical called glycyrrhizin that is 30-50
times sweeter than sucrose, and it is for this
chemical that the plant is grown commercially.
Licorice root extract is used as a flavoring in a
variety of foods and drinks, including candies.
is the name of a group of leafy,
annual plants that is closely related to cabbage.
The word "mustard" is a combination of
the Latin words mustum ardens
("burning must"), which refers to the
spicy heat generated by crushing mustard seeds.
is a spice obtained by grinding up the seed
kernel of a tropical evergreen tree. Native to
the Moluccas (Spice) Islands, where its
cultivation was once tightly controlled, the tree
has been successfully introduced throught the
East Indies, the West Indies, Brazil, India, and
is the world's most important grain crop, and
covers more of the earth's surface than any other
food crop. Although the American Midwest is known
as the "bread basket of the world"
because of the amount of wheat grown there, wheat
is not native to the United States.