the course of many centuries, humans have domesticated and improved
white rice, wheat, corn, and many other crops. It has been only
in the last half of the twentieth century that wild rice started
on the road to domestication. The challenges were great, but exciting,
in the development of this newly cultivated crop.
remarkable story of the transformation of wild rice by growers,
entrepreneurs, and scientists makes for compelling reading. Read
this book with a nostalgic sense of history as well as seeing the
story of how a new field crop was and can be developed.
Ervin A. Oelke developed his interest in agriculture while growing
up on a Wisconsin dairy farm. He served in the U.S. Army in Germany
and then earned his BS, MS, and PhD degrees in agronomy from the
University of Wisconsin-Madison. He researched the production of
wild rice at the University of California-Davis. He joined the University
of Minnesota agronomy faculty in 1968 and retired in 2000. During
his tenure he became known as a national and international expert
in wild rice cultivation.In
writing this book, Oelke reflects upon and portrays the fascinating
story of the hardships and successes of the wild rice growers and
industry. He shares his unique opportunity to be a firsthand witness
of a wild plant becoming a cultivated crop on its way to domestication.
pages, 2007, hardcover