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Re: [pfaf] Developing alder as a grain crop

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  • inverse
    ... if I happen to pass by an interesting alder specimen with ripe cones I ll make sure to mail you the seeds I m in northern Italy and relatively close to the
    Message 1 of 16 , Sep 29, 2011
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      On Thu, Sep 29, 2011 at 9:46 AM, Michael Bell <michael@...> wrote:

      You could write to me -


       
      if I happen to pass by an interesting alder specimen with ripe cones I'll make sure to mail you the seeds

      I'm in northern Italy and relatively close to the Alps (15Km from the nearest mountains and 3Km from the nearest hills) 


      Bye,
      Inverse

       

    • Michael Bell
      Ossi Please do have a look-out for better yielding alders. I have found trees with significantly bigger seeds, I am now cross-breeding them and I I ll see what
      Message 2 of 16 , Oct 2, 2014
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        Ossi

        Please do have a look-out for better yielding alders. I have found
        trees with significantly bigger seeds, I am now cross-breeding them
        and I I'll see what results I have got in a month or so. Bigger seeds
        are my main objective at this stage, but I also want cones which are
        less strong, so I can get the seeds out!

        It took 50 years to develop sugar beet from a weed of no importance to
        the main crop we know today. 6 of those years have already passed for
        aldergrain.

        Michael Bell


        In message <55946.84.248.237.202.1249538128.squirrel@...>
        "Ossi Kakko" <ossi@...> wrote:

        > Greetings from fennoscandia,

        > we have both a. incana and a. glutinosa as native.

        > occasionally i gather alnus seeds to eat by spreading
        > blankets under the tree (on snow) and by rocking the trunk
        > on a day which is not too windy, so the loss of seeds is minimal.

        > suitable timing here comes usually in february-march,
        > when the seeds drop naturally as cones open up. then seeds can
        > be ground with stones with or without roasting, in soups or
        > in bread or as a spread.... anyway one can prefer.

        > i would say there's already quite sufficient yield from
        > a single tree, so breeding sounds pretty weird,
        > but will anyway have a look next season
        > in case i see what you search for.

        > ossi kakko





        >> (This is a little changed from my earlier posting. "All things change"
        >> - Buddha)
        >>
        >> 10 Cambridge Avenue
        >> Forest Hall
        >> Newcastle -upon - Tyne
        >> NE12 8AR
        >> michael@...
        >> 0191 266 6435
        >>
        >>
        >> I have embarked on a project to develop Alder (Alnus) as a grain crop.
        >>
        >> In my meaning of the word, a "grain" is a hard dry food-thing with
        >> good keeping qualities, no matter what the exact botanical
        >> description.
        >>
        >> If you look at some Alder trees and imagine that each cone was
        >> replaced by an ear of wheat of the same size, you can see it would be
        >> a good crop. Alders fix nitrogen, they do not need to be resown every
        >> year, they do not cast a heavy shade, grass grows beneath them, and
        >> animals could be pastured on the land. My original aim was to make
        >> profitable use of the uplands of Britain, and Britain cannot feed
        >> itself, but I see now that it could also be grown on lower land and
        >> elsewhere in the world.
        >>
        >> So, I am looking for trees, cuttings or seeds, which have the traits I
        >> want.
        >>
        >> I am undecided between Alnus incana and A. glutinosa. Alnus incana
        >> grows higher and further north than A. glutinosa, and it is less
        >> dependent on water than A. glutinosa, but A. glutinosa is more
        >> plentiful. But the two species hybridise so I am interested in both.
        >>
        >> I foresee that the trees will be grown in rows to form a hedge. The
        >> cones will be pulled off using a mechanical comb and threshed in
        >> something like a combine harvester. The cones can easily be pulled off
        >> many varieties.
        >>
        >> By timing harvesting correctly it will probably be possible to pull
        >> off the cones without losing seeds and then break them open in the
        >> harvester.
        >>
        >> That said, I want the finished breed to have cones which don't open on
        >> the tree, are strong enough not break when pulled off the tree, but
        >> are easy to break open in the harvester. Any steps toward that will be
        >> welcome.
        >>
        >> Some alder trees carry no cones (!), others carry huge numbers of
        >> catkins and very few cones: the opposite of what I want. Walking many
        >> miles and looking at the alders as I passed I have found a few trees
        >> which carry vast numbers of cones on special cone-only branches,
        >> unlike "normal" alders where the cones are carried on the
        >> leaf-carrying branches. I would attach photos if the list allowed it,
        >> but I can send pictures off-list to anybody who asks.
        >>
        >> It is too early in the season to tell, but the seeds in these cones
        >> will probably be the usual wretchedly small size. I want bigger.
        >>
        >> It was easy to walk past lots of trees and from many yards away see
        >> how many cones they were carrying. I can see no such easy way of
        >> searching for bigger seeds, and this is where I am asking for help.
        >>
        >> How can you search for bigger seeds?
        >>
        >> One possibility is that if a single seed is bigger, the regular
        >> pattern of scales will be broken by a bigger seed inside. Is this a
        >> workable search method?
        >>
        >> Another possibility is to sift the seeds after they have been got out
        >> of the cones. How easy is it going to be do this by looking for
        >> big-uns by spreading the seeds out on white paper? I have built a
        >> seed-sifter which uses an air current from a computer cooling fan to
        >> sort seeds by size/weight ratio. It shows promise. Have you got some
        >> seeds which I could sort through? I can come and do it, I can bring
        >> the sifter in my car.
        >>
        >> Are there any better ideas?
        >>
        >> To spread my net wide, I would be interested in any tree you know of
        >> which has cones which are unusual in any way.
        >>
        >> I would be very grateful for any help with any part of this. I would
        >> be grateful for cuttings (which preserve the gene combination which
        >> gave rise to feature of interest) or seeds (especially if they are
        >> big) or an invitation to see a tree of interest.
        >>
        >> The plan is to copy the "Open Source" ideas of Linux and similar
        >> computer systems. All those who contribute material will be offered
        >> the results of my work.
        >>
        >> Unfortunately I have to be away at the busiest time for this, 18 Sept
        >> - 19 Oct, to attend the wedding of my nephew to a Nepali girl in
        >> Kathmandu. It will be a Hindu ceremony, with "heroic eating and
        >> drinking", followed by a walk in "the hills" - the Himalayas!
        >>
        >> Michael Bell
        >>
        >> --
        >>




        > ------------------------------------

        > Yahoo! Groups Links





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      • Geir Flatabø
        How is the taste from the grains ??? Geir Flatabø 2014-10-03 7:12 GMT+02:00 Michael Bell michael@beaverbell.co.uk [pfaf]
        Message 3 of 16 , Oct 3, 2014
        • 0 Attachment
          How is the taste from the grains ???

          Geir Flatabø

          2014-10-03 7:12 GMT+02:00 Michael Bell michael@... [pfaf] <pfaf@yahoogroups.com>:
          Ossi

          Please do have a look-out for better yielding alders. I have found
          trees with significantly bigger seeds, I am now cross-breeding them
          and I I'll see what results I have got in a month or so. Bigger seeds
          are my main objective at this stage, but I also want cones which are
          less strong, so I can get the seeds out!

          It took 50 years to develop sugar beet from a weed of no importance to
          the main crop we know today. 6 of those years have already passed for
          aldergrain.

          Michael Bell


          In message <55946.84.248.237.202.1249538128.squirrel@...>
                    "Ossi Kakko" <ossi@...> wrote:

          > Greetings from fennoscandia,

          > we have both a. incana and a. glutinosa as native.

          > occasionally i gather alnus seeds to eat by spreading
          > blankets under the tree (on snow) and by rocking the trunk
          > on a day which is not too windy, so the loss of seeds is minimal.

          > suitable timing here comes usually in february-march,
          > when the seeds drop naturally as cones open up. then seeds can
          > be ground with stones with or without roasting, in soups or
          > in bread or as a spread.... anyway one can prefer.

          > i would say there's already quite sufficient yield from
          > a single tree, so breeding sounds pretty weird,
          > but will anyway have a look next season
          > in case i see what you search for.

          > ossi kakko





          >> (This is a little changed from my earlier posting. "All things change"
          >> - Buddha)
          >>
          >>                                            10 Cambridge Avenue
          >>                                            Forest Hall
          >>                                            Newcastle -upon - Tyne
          >>                                            NE12 8AR
          >>                                            michael@...
          >>                                            0191 266 6435
          >>
          >>
          >> I have embarked on a project to develop Alder (Alnus) as a grain crop.
          >>
          >> In my meaning of the word, a "grain" is a hard dry food-thing with
          >> good keeping qualities, no matter what the exact botanical
          >> description.
          >>
          >> If you look at some Alder trees and imagine that each cone was
          >> replaced by an ear of wheat of the same size, you can see it would be
          >> a good crop. Alders fix nitrogen, they do not need to be resown every
          >> year, they do not cast a heavy shade, grass grows beneath them, and
          >> animals could be pastured on the land. My original aim was to make
          >> profitable use of the uplands of Britain, and Britain cannot feed
          >> itself, but I see now that it could also be grown on lower land and
          >> elsewhere in the world.
          >>
          >> So, I am looking for trees, cuttings or seeds, which have the traits I
          >> want.
          >>
          >> I am undecided between Alnus incana and A. glutinosa. Alnus incana
          >> grows higher and further north than A. glutinosa, and it is less
          >> dependent on water than A. glutinosa, but A. glutinosa is more
          >> plentiful. But the two species hybridise so I am interested in both.
          >>
          >> I foresee that the trees will be grown in rows to form a hedge. The
          >> cones will be pulled off using a mechanical comb and threshed in
          >> something like a combine harvester. The cones can easily be pulled off
          >> many varieties.
          >>
          >> By timing harvesting correctly it will probably be possible to pull
          >> off the cones without losing seeds and then break them open in the
          >> harvester.
          >>
          >> That said, I want the finished breed to have cones which don't open on
          >> the tree, are strong enough not break when pulled off the tree, but
          >> are easy to break open in the harvester. Any steps toward that will be
          >> welcome.
          >>
          >> Some alder trees carry no cones (!), others carry huge numbers of
          >> catkins and very few cones: the opposite of what I want. Walking many
          >> miles and looking at the alders as I passed I have found a few trees
          >> which carry vast numbers of cones on special cone-only branches,
          >> unlike "normal" alders where the cones are carried on the
          >> leaf-carrying branches. I would attach photos if the list allowed it,
          >> but I can send pictures off-list to anybody who asks.
          >>
          >> It is too early in the season to tell, but the seeds in these cones
          >> will probably be the usual wretchedly small size. I want bigger.
          >>
          >> It was easy to walk past lots of trees and from many yards away see
          >> how many cones they were carrying. I can see no such easy way of
          >> searching for bigger seeds, and this is where I am asking for help.
          >>
          >> How can you search for bigger seeds?
          >>
          >> One possibility is that if a single seed is bigger, the regular
          >> pattern of scales will be broken by a bigger seed inside. Is this a
          >> workable search method?
          >>
          >> Another possibility is to sift the seeds after they have been got out
          >> of the cones. How easy is it going to be do this by looking for
          >> big-uns by spreading the seeds out on white paper? I have built a
          >> seed-sifter which uses an air current from a computer cooling fan to
          >> sort seeds by size/weight ratio. It shows promise. Have you got some
          >> seeds which I could sort through? I can come and do it, I can bring
          >> the sifter in my car.
          >>
          >> Are there any better ideas?
          >>
          >> To spread my net wide, I would be interested in any tree you know of
          >> which has cones which are unusual in any way.
          >>
          >> I would be very grateful for any help with any part of this. I would
          >> be grateful for cuttings (which preserve the gene combination which
          >> gave rise to feature of interest) or seeds (especially if they are
          >> big) or an invitation to see a tree of interest.
          >>
          >> The plan is to copy the "Open Source" ideas of Linux and similar
          >> computer systems. All those who contribute material will be offered
          >> the results of my work.
          >>
          >> Unfortunately I have to be away at the busiest time for this, 18 Sept
          >> - 19 Oct, to attend the wedding of my nephew to a Nepali girl in
          >> Kathmandu. It will be a Hindu ceremony, with "heroic eating and
          >> drinking", followed by a walk in "the hills" - the Himalayas!
          >>
          >> Michael Bell
          >>
          >> --
          >>




          > ------------------------------------

          > Yahoo! Groups Links





          --

          ---
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          ------------------------------------
          Posted by: Michael Bell <michael@...>
          ------------------------------------


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        • Michael Bell
          The seeds don t taste of anything, and that s to be expected because the seeds are spread by wind and water and don t have to taste of anything to make
          Message 4 of 16 , Oct 3, 2014
          • 0 Attachment
            The seeds don't taste of anything, and that's to be expected because
            the seeds are spread by wind and water and don't have to taste of
            anything to make themselves attractive to birds or animals to spread
            them around.

            Most grain crops, wheat, rice, maize, etc have been developed from
            wild ancestors whose seeds were likewise spread by wind and water, not
            by animals or birds, and they also taste of nothing in particular,
            taste is created by the cooking or brewing process.


            Michael Bell

            In message <CAMPY7b3F7T5vgi8CczCMrePSu8qCmG+pwVLXm7HARDqw17hbkg@mail.g
            mail.com>
            "Geir Flatabø geirf@... [pfaf]" <pfaf@yahoogroups.com>
            wrote:

            > How is the taste from the grains ???

            > Geir Flatabø

            > 2014-10-03 7:12 GMT+02:00 Michael Bell michael@... [pfaf] <
            > pfaf@yahoogroups.com>:

            >> Ossi
            >>
            >> Please do have a look-out for better yielding alders. I have found
            >> trees with significantly bigger seeds, I am now cross-breeding them
            >> and I I'll see what results I have got in a month or so. Bigger seeds
            >> are my main objective at this stage, but I also want cones which are
            >> less strong, so I can get the seeds out!
            >>
            >> It took 50 years to develop sugar beet from a weed of no importance to
            >> the main crop we know today. 6 of those years have already passed for
            >> aldergrain.
            >>
            >> Michael Bell
            >>
            >>
            >> In message <55946.84.248.237.202.1249538128.squirrel@...>
            >> "Ossi Kakko" <ossi@...> wrote:
            >>
            >>> Greetings from fennoscandia,
            >>
            >>> we have both a. incana and a. glutinosa as native.
            >>
            >>> occasionally i gather alnus seeds to eat by spreading
            >>> blankets under the tree (on snow) and by rocking the trunk
            >>> on a day which is not too windy, so the loss of seeds is minimal.
            >>
            >>> suitable timing here comes usually in february-march,
            >>> when the seeds drop naturally as cones open up. then seeds can
            >>> be ground with stones with or without roasting, in soups or
            >>> in bread or as a spread.... anyway one can prefer.
            >>
            >>> i would say there's already quite sufficient yield from
            >>> a single tree, so breeding sounds pretty weird,
            >>> but will anyway have a look next season
            >>> in case i see what you search for.
            >>
            >>> ossi kakko
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>>> (This is a little changed from my earlier posting. "All things change"
            >>>> - Buddha)
            >>>>
            >>>> 10 Cambridge Avenue
            >>>> Forest Hall
            >>>> Newcastle -upon - Tyne
            >>>> NE12 8AR
            >>>> michael@...
            >>>> 0191 266 6435
            >>>>
            >>>>
            >>>> I have embarked on a project to develop Alder (Alnus) as a grain crop.
            >>>>
            >>>> In my meaning of the word, a "grain" is a hard dry food-thing with
            >>>> good keeping qualities, no matter what the exact botanical
            >>>> description.
            >>>>
            >>>> If you look at some Alder trees and imagine that each cone was
            >>>> replaced by an ear of wheat of the same size, you can see it would be
            >>>> a good crop. Alders fix nitrogen, they do not need to be resown every
            >>>> year, they do not cast a heavy shade, grass grows beneath them, and
            >>>> animals could be pastured on the land. My original aim was to make
            >>>> profitable use of the uplands of Britain, and Britain cannot feed
            >>>> itself, but I see now that it could also be grown on lower land and
            >>>> elsewhere in the world.
            >>>>
            >>>> So, I am looking for trees, cuttings or seeds, which have the traits I
            >>>> want.
            >>>>
            >>>> I am undecided between Alnus incana and A. glutinosa. Alnus incana
            >>>> grows higher and further north than A. glutinosa, and it is less
            >>>> dependent on water than A. glutinosa, but A. glutinosa is more
            >>>> plentiful. But the two species hybridise so I am interested in both.
            >>>>
            >>>> I foresee that the trees will be grown in rows to form a hedge. The
            >>>> cones will be pulled off using a mechanical comb and threshed in
            >>>> something like a combine harvester. The cones can easily be pulled off
            >>>> many varieties.
            >>>>
            >>>> By timing harvesting correctly it will probably be possible to pull
            >>>> off the cones without losing seeds and then break them open in the
            >>>> harvester.
            >>>>
            >>>> That said, I want the finished breed to have cones which don't open on
            >>>> the tree, are strong enough not break when pulled off the tree, but
            >>>> are easy to break open in the harvester. Any steps toward that will be
            >>>> welcome.
            >>>>
            >>>> Some alder trees carry no cones (!), others carry huge numbers of
            >>>> catkins and very few cones: the opposite of what I want. Walking many
            >>>> miles and looking at the alders as I passed I have found a few trees
            >>>> which carry vast numbers of cones on special cone-only branches,
            >>>> unlike "normal" alders where the cones are carried on the
            >>>> leaf-carrying branches. I would attach photos if the list allowed it,
            >>>> but I can send pictures off-list to anybody who asks.
            >>>>
            >>>> It is too early in the season to tell, but the seeds in these cones
            >>>> will probably be the usual wretchedly small size. I want bigger.
            >>>>
            >>>> It was easy to walk past lots of trees and from many yards away see
            >>>> how many cones they were carrying. I can see no such easy way of
            >>>> searching for bigger seeds, and this is where I am asking for help.
            >>>>
            >>>> How can you search for bigger seeds?
            >>>>
            >>>> One possibility is that if a single seed is bigger, the regular
            >>>> pattern of scales will be broken by a bigger seed inside. Is this a
            >>>> workable search method?
            >>>>
            >>>> Another possibility is to sift the seeds after they have been got out
            >>>> of the cones. How easy is it going to be do this by looking for
            >>>> big-uns by spreading the seeds out on white paper? I have built a
            >>>> seed-sifter which uses an air current from a computer cooling fan to
            >>>> sort seeds by size/weight ratio. It shows promise. Have you got some
            >>>> seeds which I could sort through? I can come and do it, I can bring
            >>>> the sifter in my car.
            >>>>
            >>>> Are there any better ideas?
            >>>>
            >>>> To spread my net wide, I would be interested in any tree you know of
            >>>> which has cones which are unusual in any way.
            >>>>
            >>>> I would be very grateful for any help with any part of this. I would
            >>>> be grateful for cuttings (which preserve the gene combination which
            >>>> gave rise to feature of interest) or seeds (especially if they are
            >>>> big) or an invitation to see a tree of interest.
            >>>>
            >>>> The plan is to copy the "Open Source" ideas of Linux and similar
            >>>> computer systems. All those who contribute material will be offered
            >>>> the results of my work.
            >>>>
            >>>> Unfortunately I have to be away at the busiest time for this, 18 Sept
            >>>> - 19 Oct, to attend the wedding of my nephew to a Nepali girl in
            >>>> Kathmandu. It will be a Hindu ceremony, with "heroic eating and
            >>>> drinking", followed by a walk in "the hills" - the Himalayas!
            >>>>
            >>>> Michael Bell
            >>>>
            >>>> --
            >>>>
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>> ------------------------------------
            >>
            >>> Yahoo! Groups Links
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >> --
            >>
            >> ---
            >> This email is free from viruses and malware because avast! Antivirus
            >> protection is active.
            >> http://www.avast.com
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >> ------------------------------------
            >> Posted by: Michael Bell <michael@...>
            >> ------------------------------------
            >>
            >>
            >> ------------------------------------
            >>
            >> Yahoo Groups Links
            >>
            >>
            >>
            >>


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