Thanks for that update on Wes Jackson's work. I somewhat suspected
that these things do take a lot of time. Would be great if it could work,
reduce farming operations to harvesting, no ploughing or disking, no sowing,
nothing, just harvesting. Wonder why people didn't think of that earlier.
Wes Jackson realizes that it will take a long time for perrenial crops
to develop. His time frame is 75-150 years. THis is of course a lot
better than the thousands of years it took fro convential crops.
He is working on a perrenial sunflower (for oil).
This is from the natural perrenial Maximillian Sunflower.
He has recently obtained gerplasm from the USDA working on
crossbreeding naitive perrenial with annual sunflower to increase
disease resistance ane enhance oil qualities.
He is working on perrenial wheat.
Some of the project is workign with intermediate wheatgrass (triga)
and others are hybrids with various cereals (rye, durum, wheat etc).
In the hybrids they are having problems with fertility, specifically
the number of chromosomes between plants is different. The triga stock
is from roadale institues intial trial. Triga is the closest to
commercial, but it still several generations off.
ALso on the plate are perrenial corn and eastern gama grass (this is
not being persued heavily at this time).
Perrenial sorguhm (hybrids with johnson grass). Limited sucess so far.
Making rosinweed (silphium intergifolium) into a high yeilding oil
seed. (limited success so far)
They are working with Illinois Bundflower for a legume like grain.
The have the yeilds, the non-shattering and loss of bitterness are the
keys to making this a commercial possibility.
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