Close-up of millet grains

MILLET GRAIN SIZE, SHAPE AND COLOUR:


There are two main groups of millet-based on size:
1. Major Millets (Sorghum and Pearl Millet)
2. Minor Millets (Finger Millet, Little Millet, Foxtail Millet, Proso Millet, Barnyard Millet, Kodo Millet, Browntop Millet)

The seed coat and husk of foxtail, little and Proso Millet are generally of a single entity with a glossy appearance, whereas the Kodo and Barnyard Millet contains multiple layered seed coat.

Normally, the seed coat of Kodo Millet is brown colour, foxtail millet is yellowish whereas other millets are greyish coloured.

But looking deep into its shape, size and colour of millets grains let us discuss it one by one briefly.

1. FINGER MILLET:

Close-up photo of Finger Millet grains.
Close-up photo of Finger Millet grains.

Grains are 1-2 mm in diameter, with the colour varying from brown to dark brown in colour. The seed type of finger millet is Utricle. The kernel weight of 1000 kernels is 2.3 gm. The shape of the grain is globose. The testa of finger millet is very thick with five cell layers and also it is pigmented. The endosperm is the largest component of the kernel cereal. Aleurone layer is single which lies just below the testa or seed coat.

2..PROSO MILLET:

Close-up photo of Proso Millet grains.
Close-up photo of Proso Millet grains.

The grain size is 3-4 mm in length. Grains vary in colour from white cream golden yellow, brown & straw white in colour. The grains are spherical to oval in shape, about 3mm long & 2mm diameter. The 1000 kernel weight is about 7.1g. The seed type is Utricle. The testa layer is single and it is not pigmented.


3.BARNYARD MILLET:

Close-up photo of Barnyard Millet grains.
Close-up photo of Barnyard Millet grains.

The seed size is 3mm in length. The shape of the grain is Concave, oval. The colour of the varies from straw white, grey, little grey to dull white. There is a knob-like structure which is attached to the panicle which makes it different from Little Millet.

4.SORGHUM:

Close-up photo of Sorghum grains.
Close-up photo of Sorghum grains.

The seed size is 4-6 mm in length. The seeds vary widely among different types of colour, shape and size. The grains of sorghum are classed according to pericarp colour(white, yellow, or red)

5.PEARL MILLET:

Close-up photo of Pearl Millet grains.
Close-up photo of Pearl Millet grains.

The seed type of Pearl Millet is Caryopsis. It consists of a single thin testa layer and sometimes pigmented. It has a single aleurone layer. With ovoid grains of 3-5 mm length which can be a nearly white, pale yellow, brown, grey, slate blue or purple colour. The shape of the grain is ovoid, hexagonal and globose. The 100 seed weight can be from 2.5 to 14 grams with mean to 8 gm. The seeds are 1/3 to 1/2 the size of that of sorghum and tend to be more elongated and tear-shaped.

6.FOXTAIL MILLET:

Close-up photo of Foxtail Millet grains.
Close-up photo of Foxtail Millet grains.

Grains are about 2-3 mm in length and the glumes can be red, black, white, yellow in colour. The seed type of Foxtail Millet is Caryopsis.

7. KODO MILLET:

Close-up photo of Kodo Millet grains.
Close-up photo of Kodo Millet grains.

The seed size is 3-4 mm in length. Grain shape is elliptical to oval shape and its colour vary from blackish brown to dark brown in colour.

8.BROWNTOP MILLET:

Close-up photo of Browntop Millet grains.
Close-up photo of Browntop Millet grains.

The seed size is 4-5 mm in length. Seeds are ellipsoid in shape and tan in colour.

9.LITTLE MILLET:

Close-up photo of Little Millet grains.
Close-up photo of Little Millet grains.

The seed size is 2-3 mm in length. Grain shape is elliptical to oval shape and its colour vary from grey to straw white.

Related Post: Types of Millets grown in India

VIDEO:

***Please give your valuable suggestions and feedback for improvement.


Author: Tapas Chandra Roy, Assistant Agriculture Officer, Department of Agriculture and Farmers’ Empowerment, (Govt. of Odisha)

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