Cajanus Cajan, Pigeon Pea Seed, Mu Dou
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Cajanus Cajan < 木豆 Mu Dou >
Common Name: Pigeon Pea
Binomial name: Cajanus Cajan
The pigeon pea (Cajanus cajan) is a perennial legume from the family Fabaceae. Since its domestication in South Asia at least 3,500 years ago, its seeds have become a common food grain in Asia, Africa, and Latin America. The cultivation of the pigeon pea goes back at least 3,500 years. The centre of origin is the eastern part of peninsular India, including the state of Odisha, where the closest wild relatives (Cajanus cajanifolia) occur in tropical deciduous woodlands. Archaeological finds of pigeon pea include those from two Neolithic sites in Odisha, Gopalpur and Golbai Sassan dating between 3,400 and 3,000 years ago, and sites in South India, Sanganakallu and Tuljapur Garhi, also dating back to 3,400 years ago. From India it traveled to East Africa and West Africa. There, it was first encountered by Europeans, so it obtained the name Congo Pea. By means of the slave trade it came to the American continent, probably in the 17th century.
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