Brainfood: Rye genus, Purple carrots, Breed conservation contracts, Livestock breeding, USDA sweetpotatoes, Apple breeding, Olive breeding, Landrace nutrition, Trade and SDG 2.5, Medicinal legumes, Tea in China, Non-rhizobia, Fungal cryo, Barcoding NUS

Too good to be perennial?

There’s news of the release of a perennial sorghum variety in Ethiopia:

“The benefit of this new variety is … that once you sow it, you don’t need to till the land for up to five years,” said Loul, adding that growing sorghum preserves the environment and prevents erosion by providing vegetation cover throughout the year.

It was apparently developed by Re-nature Eternal Life Agro Processing SC, but there are few details on its website. I’m trying to find out more. Anyone out there know anything about this?

Featured: NZ sweetpotatoes

Ashley Gould doesn’t think much of a story about Yen’s sweetpotato collection in New Zealand that I linked to a few years back.

“Feel good” but essentially untrue… Disinformation and confusion dominated this story from 1988.

Good to have these things debunked. I should have researched the story better.

Down to seeds and stems

Speaking of cool threads, there’s also this from the indefatigable Megan Lynch from the annual meeting of the National Association of Plant Breeders, on a crop that’s responsible for the livelihoods of increasing numbers of people in places like California, and some people think for civilization itself.

N-fixing maize goop

The news that a maize landrace has been found to fix atmospheric nitrogen because of microbes growing in gunk on its aerial roots has been getting a lot of traction. Understandably. The best take on it I’ve come across is this Twitter thread from Dr Sarah Taber: