> Dear friends -
> Can anyone tell me anything about cultivating wild rice, beginning with where
> does one get seed,
> and continuing with the question, can one still call it wild if it's been tamed?
You could call it "domesticated wild rice"; or if that doesn't seem appropriate,
> We tried doing a Web search on wild rice and came up with zero.
This turned up 11,664 hits:
of them was: http://www.bio.umass.edu/biology/conn.river/rice.html
and it contained: "Wild Rice - Zizania palustris L.
If you are interested in learning about economically useful wild plants, contact
Professor E.Davis, Biology Department, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA
To many who know wild rice it is known only as an item on the supermarket shelf,
but this grass, Zizania palustris L., grows natively in the Connecticut River
Wild rice habitat along the water's edge Close up of a wild rice plant
Wild rice is a tall aquatic grass of North America with a grain two or more times
the length of the long grain rice of Asia (Oryza). Though the importance of wild
rice to Native Americans of the Eastern United States and Canada was limited, it
has been of enormous importance to the Ojibway people, not only as a food but in
their social and religious ceremonies. Today wild rice still retains an economic
importance and one of the major sources of this rice for the market is Grey Owl
Foods, a marketing organization owned by Native Americans from 72 reservations in
Saskatchewan, Canada. The rice is also a valuable food for water fowl and is
planted for that purpose.
Wild rice has been difficult to cultivate, in large part because of the ease with
which ripe grains fall from their stalks or "shatter." For centuries Native
Americans harvested it in canoes, bending the long stalks over the canoe and
shaking off the grain. By 1985 a shatter resistant cultivar had been developed and
the amount of wild rice in cultivation now greatly exceeds that harvested from
plants growing naturally. California and Minnesota are the two major sources of
cultivated wild rice. The new cultivar produces shorter grains that swell less
when cooked than do the natural strain, so wild rice from the Connecticut River
will not look exactly like what you might purchase in the store.
Wild rice has been found on numerous sites on the Connecticut River, on the
borders of streams in shallow water protected from strong river currents. A
population has recently been found on the western banks of the river, south of
Route 116 in Whately, MA. Some plants seems to have been infected by a foliar
fungal disease, brown spot. Ergot,
Claviceps zizaniae, is also known to occur on natural grain wild rice.
Hayes, P. M., R. E. Stucker and G. G. Wandrey. 1989. The
domestication of American wildrice (Zizania paulustris,
Poaceae. Economic Botany 43:203-214.
Steeves, T. A. 1952. Wild rice: Indian food and a modern
delicacy. Economic Botany 26:107-142.
Vennum, T. 1988. Wild Rice and the Ojibway people.
Minnesota Historical Society Press, St. Paul MN 55101. 358 pp."
That'll give you a little something to start with.
Here's another: http://www.hort.purdue.edu/newcrop/proceedings1993/v2-235.html
Oelke, E.A. 1993. Wild rice: Domestication of a native North American genus. p.
235-243. In: J. Janick and J.E.
Simon (eds.), New crops. Wiley, New York.
Wild Rice: Domestication of a Native North American Genus
Ervin A. Oelke
2.Diseases and Pests
3.SUMMARY AND FUTURE
and a lot more. (all of the above is there in full).
This one is a little more "home ec" oriented:
One last one: http://probe.nalusda.gov:8000/otherdocs/rgn/rgn9/v9p36.html
6. Chinese common wild rice close to the Japonica type
Ping-Yong YUAN1, Y.Z. ZHANG1 and H.W. CAI2
1) Yunnan Academy of Agricultural Sciences, Kunming, 650205 China
2) Beijing Acricultural University, Beijing, 100094 China
Morishima (1986, 1987) reported that a Chinese common wild rice (O. rufipogon)
showed primitive growth habit and characters resembling those of the Japonica
type. A survey of small samples of foreign and indigenous wild rices has led us to
the same conclusion. Chinese wild rice differed from foreign ones significantly in
flag-leaf width (narrower), its length/width ratio (larger), fertile seed number
per panicle (smaller), and percent seed set when bagged (smaller;
(Technical article follows).
> (My computer had a fit of pique and wasn't talking to me for three or four
> weeks, which is why I haven't gotten involved in some classic discussions such
> as, how much does anybody know about anything. This week maybe I can start
> catching up.)
> All the best to all of you,
> Betty Gras
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