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Taylor was kind enough to chat with our Naturalist Michelle to give you all an idea of what to expect & help you get to know him & his important work.
My mentor, Dr. Deward Walker, Chair Emeritus of C.U. Boulder challenged me to “protect our Indigenous heirloom crops” almost 15 years ago. This was way before many of the Seed Saver movements had begun. I had to “wake up” before moving forward. Then when the Cherokee Nation started their Seed Saving initiative, I was quick to sign up!
The story of how I got into my own seed saving and the importance of corn in Indigenous cosmologies. And the history of corn in America, how it was commercially appropriated away from Indigenous peoples.
The connection it gives me to the rhythms and cycles of Mother Earth. Right now is pollination time and I love helping the plants pollinate by hand.
I have always been in touch with my tribal roots. But if the question was connecting to tribal growing: Organic farming is very challenging. The Elders say, “cherish every kernel” and that is what I tell myself after the weather takes down a crop or we otherwise lose crops to animals or bugs.
Just start! Pick a little plot with a lot of sun, pick some good heirloom seed from Baker Creek (my go-to) or Seed Savers. Use low till and regenerative methods. Let the Three Sister do their thing!
Buffalo Bird Woman’s Garden: Agriculture of the Hidatsa Indians by Gilbert Wilson and Corn Among the Indians of the Upper Missouri By George E. Will.
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