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Ulluco: 2016 Wrap Up

Unveiling new ulluco varieties is starting to become a little routine.  Oh well, there is really no rut that I would rather be stuck in. I reached a peak of 44 ulluco seedlings this year.  25 of them died, were culled due to obvious disease, or failed to set any tubers.  19 survived to the […]

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About My Potato Breeding Projects

Because we sell excess seed from my potato breeding projects, we get a lot of questions about what my goals are.  Unlike most of the other plants that we sell, we don’t produce potato tubers for sale.  Maybe someday we will, but there are complexities in interstate commerce with potatoes that I would rather avoid.  […]

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Yacon plant variety OC-16-1Ux02x08

Yacon: Seedling Progress

Last year, we grew two new yacon varieties from seed and also collected more than 1000 yacon seeds.  This year, after starting seeds in November, we have 132 yacon seedlings.  Each one of those seedlings will be a new variety, a consequence of both yacon’s polyploid nature and the fact that it is an obligate […]

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A large pile of ahipa seeds of the variety Tarija

Ahipa: Getting to the root of beans

Ahipa (Pachyrhizus ahipa) is one of a few varieties of bean that have been bred for their roots, rather than for their seeds (the beans).  It produces a storage root that tops out at about 2 pounds in its native region in Bolivia.  The root is used similarly to yacon: more like a fruit than […]

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Eight ulluco varieties grown from seedlings. The tubers are small. Colors are purple, light green, yellow, orange and purple, dark purple, and lime green

Ulluco: 2015 Mini tuber harvest

We had 27 ulluco seeds germinate in 2015, but they did so over a very long period of time and more than half of them popped up in September, by which time it was growing late to produce tubers.  In addition to short day length, ulluco needs a few months of growth before it is […]

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New Variety Introductions for 2016

I’ve announced a lot of achievements that I was proud of in this blog, but this might be my favorite. These are the new varieties that we have produced in the past couple of years, all of which have been released under the terms of the Open Source Seed Initiative pledge. That picture represents thousands […]

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Ulluco: 2015 Seed Production

Ulluco seed production in 2015 The ulluco seed season has come to a close for 2015.  Not long after the autumn equinox, when ulluco begins to form tubers, it stops producing seeds.  Some varieties continue to flower, but the flowers no longer form seeds, even with hand pollination. 2015 is our third year producing seeds […]

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Yacon: Leaf Shape

One of the problems that we have in maintaining and expanding our little yacon collection is that it can be very difficult to distinguish different yacon varieties.  Plants look very similar in the field and the rhizomes and storage roots also don’t vary all that much from variety to variety.  A few conveniently have red/purple […]

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