Visualizing Perennials

In Kansas people are doing the unthinkable. In the midst of the corn-belt, in a sea of annual grains that stretches as far as the eye can see, The Land Institute has breeders working to re-structure our agricultural relationship with plants. Through traditional breeding practices, they are attempting to perennialize our basic food, oil, and fiber crops- corn, wheat, sunflower- the list goes on.

Their vision for replanting the landscape with perennial crops- whose roots will hold down the prairie top soil, is inspiring.

Lead Scientist Jerry Glover being interviewedLead Scientist Jerry Glover being interviewed

Perennial Sunflowers

Perennial Sunflowers

Jerry Glover and Fred KirschenmannJerry Glover and Fred Kirschenmann

– By Jessy Beckett

Rodale

The Rodale Institute is the longest running organization promoting sustainable and organic farming practices in the U.S. Their organization is smart, tactical, and scientifically sound. Tim LaSalle (now past) CEO, is one of those people that, with every breath, forces his audience to pause and think about the interconnectedness of global issues, and how simple and clear the solutions really can be.

Tim LaSalle being interviewed

Set against the verdant background of mid summer Pennsylvania, it’s hard not to be swept up in hope for our collective agricultural future. Rodale is proving, step by step, that through careful soil fertility management, such as the addition of organic matter, we can solve many of the world’s large problems. As we walked through their field of wheat, held their soil in our hands, and witnessed the clouds of beneficials (including fire flies might I add)- it was hard not to imagine a world where agriculture is sustainable, where life is well managed, and where the soil is alive.

DP John Chater, Sound Man Ray Day, and Deborah in a wheat trial at Rodale

– By Jessy Beckett