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Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs


Other Common Names Include:

Maca-maca, Peruvian ginseng, maino, ayuk willku , ayak chichira

Latin Name: Lepidium meyenii

Plant Family: Brassicaceae

Close Relatives: Garden cress and peppercress

Uses and Markets: Culinary (used fresh as a baked vegetable, mashed for soup and porridge, or dried and ground into flour for breads).  Medicinal (consumption of maca has been reported to improve male fertility and increase energy). Traditionally grown in Peru and Bolivia. 

Ontario field trial of three maca cultivars Maca plants exhibiting signs of heat stress Maca plant just prior to harvest in late fall Small, unmarketable maca roots harvested from Ontario field trials


Maca requires a long growing season in the range of 250-280 days with cool to moderate growing temperatures.  Initial experience with maca in Ontario field trials has shown that it does not produce a marketable crop.




Additional Notes


Ontario Research Projects Used to Create This Profile

  1. Elford, E., Filotas, M., Todd, J., Westerveld, S., Bilal, A., and M. Brownbridge. 2011. World crops variety trials and demonstration. OMAFRA Simcoe Resource Centre/Vineland Research and Innovation Centre, unpublished.
  1. Gonzales, G.F., Gonzales, C., and C. Gonzales-Castañeda.  2009.  Lepidium meyenii (Maca): a plant from the highlands of Peru-from tradition to science. Forsch Komplementmed, 16 (6): 373-80.