Northernmost Native-American Agricultural People?

VHS

Ad Honorem
Dec 2015
4,494
Florania
#21
I don't know about older varieties of corn, but modern varieties of sweet corn can be harvested in 60-90 days.

Of course, the Indians didn't have modern varieties. So it's hard to tell how far north they could grow corn.
The impression is that "Indians" for Native Americans is a misnomer; it would be more accurate to call them by their group names.
For example, the Quechua is known to have many varieties of potatoes:
The 3800 Different Types of Peruvian Potatoes - LimaEasy

The Irish famine was caused by monoculture: the farming and dependence of one variety of potatoes.
Why didn't the Irish adopt more variety of potatoes?
While China is not the home of corns, it is home of glutinous or waxy corns:
Waxy corn - Wikipedia
Why waxy corns are hardly grown in North America?
 
Aug 2016
977
US&A
#22
The impression is that "Indians" for Native Americans is a misnomer; it would be more accurate to call them by their group names.
For example, the Quechua is known to have many varieties of potatoes:
The 3800 Different Types of Peruvian Potatoes - LimaEasy

The Irish famine was caused by monoculture: the farming and dependence of one variety of potatoes.
Why didn't the Irish adopt more variety of potatoes?
While China is not the home of corns, it is home of glutinous or waxy corns:
Waxy corn - Wikipedia
Why waxy corns are hardly grown in North America?
I didn't mean to cause offense. I usually prefer "Native-American" because it doesn't also describe people from India. I just used the term "Indian" instead of "Native-American" because I was writing that post on my phone, and it was easier to type. Most Native-Americans do not consider "Indian" to be derogatory, and some even prefer it to "Native-American".

I think it was not the Irish people's choice what crops to adopt. They had to obey their British Landlords who owned the land. I suppose whichever potato variety was chosen produced the most money for the Landlords.

I have never even heard of waxy corn before. I am glad you posted information about it. I am not sure why they are not grown here, but the Wikipedia link you gave seems to give a few clues under the "Agronomic Features" section.

Producing waxy maize starch on an industrial scale requires extra measures compared to standard dent maize.

New varieties with the waxy locus are relatively easy to breed through back-crossing breeding with dent maize varieties, but their productivity is approximately 3 to 10% less than that of dent maize.

Due to the waxy gene being recessive, waxy maize has to be isolated from any nearby dent maize fields by at least 200 meters to prevent cross-pollination. Volunteer dent maize plants sprouting from the previous year's debris are also a problem. A few dent maize volunteers in a waxy field will be enough to contaminate the whole field, resulting in dent grains instead of waxy grains with amylopectin starch.
The last sentence is probably the biggest reason why waxy corn isn't grown much. I don't know if you have ever gone on a road trip in the USA, but if you ever do you will almost certainly pass through an area where corn is grown on an industrial scale. There are areas where all you can see is the sky, the road, telephone lines, and endless fields of corn.
 

VHS

Ad Honorem
Dec 2015
4,494
Florania
#23
I didn't mean to cause offense. I usually prefer "Native-American" because it doesn't also describe people from India. I just used the term "Indian" instead of "Native-American" because I was writing that post on my phone, and it was easier to type. Most Native-Americans do not consider "Indian" to be derogatory, and some even prefer it to "Native-American".

I think it was not the Irish people's choice what crops to adopt. They had to obey their British Landlords who owned the land. I suppose whichever potato variety was chosen produced the most money for the Landlords.

I have never even heard of waxy corn before. I am glad you posted information about it. I am not sure why they are not grown here, but the Wikipedia link you gave seems to give a few clues under the "Agronomic Features" section.



The last sentence is probably the biggest reason why waxy corn isn't grown much. I don't know if you have ever gone on a road trip in the USA, but if you ever do you will almost certainly pass through an area where corn is grown on an industrial scale. There are areas where all you can see is the sky, the road, telephone lines, and endless fields of corn.
In one of the many webnovels I read, the landlords will try everything to keep food price high, including limiting the growth of high yielding and hardy plants and hindrance of technological developments.
 
Aug 2018
449
Southern Indiana
#24
I don't know about older varieties of corn, but modern varieties of sweet corn can be harvested in 60-90 days.

Of course, the Indians didn't have modern varieties. So it's hard to tell how far north they could grow corn.
Dent corn and flint corn are the two varieties that were widely grown 200-300 years ago, I believe they are both 120 day.

Th Miami Indians of Indiana had a variety of white corn that was softer and much prized, unfortunately it was lost back in the 1940's. It makes me sad that it survived that long only to be lost a decade or so before it would have been noticed and saved from extinction.
 

Edratman

Forum Staff
Feb 2009
6,667
Eastern PA
#25
I've been looking into building a worm farm as a way of disposing of dog poop. While researching that, I learned that the latitudes between 45 and 69 degrees in Northern North America have no native worm species. They all went extinct 11,000 years ago.

Of course, we now have tons of invasive worm species, mostly from Europe and Asia. While they hurt our forests, who aren't used to them, they are usually a boon for farmers and gardeners like me.

Learning that made me realize that most Northern Native-American Peoples didn't farm much. I wonder if that is at least partly due to lack of worms.

What Native-American People were the northernmost farmers?
That is quite interesting, an engaging fact that I was unaware of.

I hold the opinion that the short growing season was the primary limiting factor on northern agriculture. Way back when, I used to work with a chap who grew up on a farm in N. Dakota and he said that the only crops his father could grow were wheat, sunflowers and hay. On a side note, his stories of winter were beyond conception, such as his family kept six weeks of food on hand in case they were snowed in!!!!!! (In some sort of deep illustration of myself, upon his telling this tale I immediately mentally set the over/under line for the survivor count from my family following six weeks of close quarters isolation. Decency keeps me from informing you of my final calculation, but I will give a hint that it was less than 100%. Way less!)
 
Jan 2018
390
Sturgeon Lake Mn.
#26
The impression is that "Indians" for Native Americans is a misnomer; it would be more accurate to call them by their group names...
It's my impression that many American Indians refer to themselves, as a group, as Indians.

History

Red Lake Nation - Home of the Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians

As an interesting note, the last fight the United States Army had with Indians was with the Leech Lake Ojibwe (Chippewas) in 1898. The Chippewas (arguably the most formidable of American Indians) whipped a company of the 3rd Infantry.
 
Last edited:
Aug 2018
449
Southern Indiana
#27
It's my impression that many American Indians refer to themselves, as a group, as Indians.

History

Red Lake Nation - Home of the Red Lake Band of Chippewa Indians

As an interesting note, the last fight the United States Army had with Indians was with the Leech Lake Ojibwe (Chippewas) in 1898. The Chippewas (arguably the most formidable of American Indians) whipped a company of the 3rd Infantry.

True, another example. Miami Nation of Indians of the State of IndianaOfficial Miami Indians of Indiana
 
Jan 2018
390
Sturgeon Lake Mn.
#28
Aug 2018
449
Southern Indiana
#29
I have a signed first edition (only edition probably) of this book on Little Turtle, I bought it at the Abraham Lincoln Bookshop in Chicago. Interesting how some of the Miamis gained American legal title to lands in Indiana and were unremovable.

https://www.amazon.com/life-times-L...le+turtle+miami&qid=1561399718&s=books&sr=1-5
Yes, read "The Miami Indians of Indiana" a great book that takes it decade by decade up to the 1990's. A few tribes had similar stories, the Wyandot of Ohio assimilated very well and even had their very own 100% Wyandot lawyer in the 1840's to represent them, though their story ended a little differently with them moving west under their own conditions.
 
Likes: Zip
Sep 2012
1,043
Tarkington, Texas
#30
Keep in mind when discussing the Great Potato Famine in Ireland that the Irish also grew wheat. The Irish grew one type of potato because it produced large tubers with little work and they would forage for edible plants and wildlife. The Irish starved because the landlords took the wheat as rent.

Pruitt