Double Red Sweet Corn

Double Red Sweet Corn
Double Red Sweet Corn

Friday, January 21, 2005

Beneath the Surface

"More than 99% of the living matter (standing crop) on this planet...are represented by biofilms, microbial mats and biodictyons of the deep subsurface layers of the earth" W.E. Krumbein et al 2003

Scientific genius is a rare gift, both in finding and the developing. For a lifetime, soil science never made sense to me. The chemical analytical system of rock, sand, silt, clay, different sized particles composed of elemental materials made into compounds of silicon, calcium, iron, sodium, sulfur, aluminum, potassium, zinc, manganese, lacked as certain reality but I couldn't quite put my finger on what was missing.
Life was missing.
Molecular biology came along and the advances in looking at whole genomes of bacteria challenge existing status-quo beliefs about life on earth. With thousands of genes, baceria were solved, resolved into functions, compared and catalogued. And increasingly advances in understanding bacteria continue to transform our notions of reality.
Bacteria were studied by microbiologists for 150 years as free floating liquid dwellers.
Now it becomes clear that most bacteria live in rooted communities wherever water flows, settles, pools, clusters, eddies, accumulates or just passes by. These communities are composites of various living components, mostly bacterial. Some use sun or chemical energy t make organic compounds which are then shared with others that need them. Exchanges occur for iron or molybdenum or for cofactors that stimulate swimming towards the light or away from oxygen. Bacteria use alot of energy for making inter-communication molecules. Signals pass back and forth between bacteria, rapidly and routinely, reminiscent of our cell phone and internet human communication facility.
Rather than living a free floating life, bacteria prefer to live in biofilms, microbial mats or bacterial laminates. When these laminates solidify, they make rocks. In 1528 Paracelsus stated that microbial communities found in water turned into rocks. The predominant bacterial lifestyle is sessile. Attached. Rarely free. It took the microbiologists a while to figure it out. More than half of the gene activities are enhanced in the stable, composite, integrated communities.
I was raised on the precipitatory notion of sedimentary rock formation. Inorganic material precipitated from the top down, following gravity, giving rise to sedimentary rocks. Wrong! Bacterial communities grow on rocks, in pools, which dry down, become solid, rock-like, then rock. Microorganisms make an extracellular polymeric matrix of sugars as an environment and adaptational milieu for the changing times, which later turns into more rocks.
Times are always changing. Some changes are more profound than others.
The conversion of rock formation from abstract physico-chemical principles to the activities of tiny little creatures is a long climb after generations of ignorance. A scientist in the 16th century recognized the biological origin of sedimentary rocks. It took almost 500 years for current, modern science to come to the same conclusion.
Now a modern scientific genius in the biogeophysiology of the earth, W.E. Krumbein, tells us that most all of life on earth is bacterial and that most of them live under the earth's surface, dozens to hundreds of miles into the world we live on. They are the foundation of our lives. We walk on them all the time.
Not only did the bacteria make many of the rocks on the surface of the earth, but they built enduring biofilm communities whose current incarnations includes the surface of our teeth, the inside of our large intestine, many mineral ore deposits and the petroleum that fuels the present society.

Quote from Chapter 1 in "Fossil and Recent Biofilms" 2003 W.E.Krumbein, D.M. Paterson and G.A. Zavarzin Kluwer Academic Publishers.

Saturday, January 15, 2005

Descriptions from Dr Kapuler's "Peace Seeds Research Journals"

The Eighth Peace Seeds Resource Journal 1997
This intro was written by David Seber.
After 15 years of working on gardens that maximize biodiversity, Dr. Al tells the tale of constructing a kinship garden using Rolf Dahlgren's coevolutionay bubble mapping layouts. He also reviews sunflowers, from the soil to the genes and, from the planet to the plant. He continues his collaboration with Dr. Sarangamat Gurusiddiah in providing analysis of free amino acids in the juices of another group of interesting crops including cucumbers, sunflower petals and snap beans. Then they look at glutamine, one of the amino acid energy sources of our brains and, arginine- the precursor to nitrous oxide, NO, which regulates both the hemoglobin-oxygen process in our blood and the flexi-contractility of our blood vessels. Other articles concern the patenting of life and the public domain from which continuing theft of organisms threatens a healthy future for humanity
Table of Contents
Plant World 1. The Sunflowers: America's Golden Daisies of the Sun-AMK. 2. The Size and Distribution of Plant Genera-Kapuler and Crowder. Kinship Gardening 3. System Tree and Kinship Gardening: A Strong Paradigm for Research and Utilization of Plant Resources-Bi Jihuan. 4. An Ark for the Plants: Constructing, Planting and Growing a Kinship Garden Using the Dahlgren Coevolutionary Layout-AMK. Nutrition 5. The Amino Acids Precursory to Proteins are Primary Human Food V. Free Amino Acids in the Juices of Cucumbers, Sunflower Petals, Chicories and Radicchios, Snap Beans and other crops. A Summary for Free Proline. Kapuler and Gurusiddiah. 6. The Amino Acids Precursory to Proteins are Primary Human Food VI. The Benefits of Onions and Broccoli: Glutamine and Arginine Free in their Juices: Kapuler and Gurusiddiah. Social and Political Commentary 7. The End of Names-Hare M. Seldon thanks to Joyce Hendler. 8. Cheaper Than Manhattan Island-Hare M. Seldon.
The Ninth Peace Seeds Resource Journal 2001
Dr. Al and his daughter, Kusra, introduce a kinship gardening layout for the world flora based on the new taxonomy of the plants coming from molecular biology. In detail kinship analysis of maguey (Agaves) and Theobroma (chocolate) are developed. Kusra's journey to China is raccounted in a 30 page photoessay and eminent chinese horticultural scientist Bi Jihuan and his duaghter Bi Xiaoyan use the kinship paradigm to analyse 925 kinds of chinese vegetables. In an unprecedented collaboration, powerful social commentaries on pressing issues of our times are provided by David Seber, Alan Venet, Howard Shapiro and Al Kapuler. The Peace Journals have been published since the early 1980's. Volume 9 is the highpoint of this ongoing work
Table of Contents
Gaia: 1. Journey in China by Kusra Kapuler 1-30. 2. The Last Generation by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. 31-32. 3. La Fortuna-A Kinship Botanical Garden in Southern Baja California by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. 33-45. Kinship Gardening: 4. A Preliminary Kinship Layout of the World Flora Based on the New Ordinal Taxonomy of the Angiosperms by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. and Kusra Kapuler 46-50. 5. The Maguey of Mesoamerica: A Kinship Layout for the Yucca and Agave Family, the Agavaceae by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. 51-55. 6. Cacao, Chocolate and Conservation: A Kinship Layout for Genus Theobroma by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. 56-63. 7. A System Tree Analysis of the Flowering Plants: Selected Food Resources by Bi Xiaoyan 64-66. Commentaries: 8. The End of the Brazilian Rainforest by Howard Yana Shapiro Ph.D. 67-68. 9. The Use of Fiber by People and the Preservation of Diversity of Wild Species by David Seber 69-70. 10. Where Are We Now? by Alan Venet 71-72.
11. Genetic Engineering, GMO's and the Biosphere by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. 73-75.
Note* These Journals are available for purchase at
Copyright by Alan and Kusra Kapuler Quotes with appropriate citation of 200 words or less require no permission. Otherwise all rights reserved. Reproduction by agreement with Peace Seeds 2001

The Last Generation, Extinction and Plant Diversity in Southern Baja California

by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. May 1, 2000

It took three visits to Baja California, the long and narrow peninsula of land that is the southernmost tip of land of Turtle Island, the northamerican continent that I sometimes call my home, before I realized what was wrong. The thorny plants that inhabit the dry climate are very beautiful and are generally rare in the perspective of the world flora. Surprisingly, the native flora of this tropical desert ecosystem is on the verge of massive extinction.
Several converging and nested forces have led to this remarkable circumstance. For more than 50 years, large numbers of free range cattle and goats have eaten almost all the young plants of a wide variety of species, genera and families. The open and unrestricted grazing habit of these herbivores has reduced or eliminated populations of young cacti, daisies, mints, burseras, morning glories, figs, cucurbits, scrophularias, phlox, and in particular and perhaps most important, legumes. Legumes in the desert tropics belong to three major groups, reckoned by botanists as either families or subfamilies. These are the Caesalpiniaceae which includes the cassias, carob, sennas, orchid trees, redbuds, cercidiums, tamarind...; the Mimosaceae which includes acacias, desmanthus, prosopis, calliandras, lysilomas, icecream beans ....and the Fabaceae which includes .....31 tribes (see Peace Seeds Resource Journal1994 7: 31-40). The published flora of Baja California (Wiggins The Flora of Baja California, Stanford University Press 1980) gives 10 genera and 31 species for the Caesalpiniaceae, 11 genera and 39 species for the Mimosaceae and 38 genera and 153 species for the Fabaceae. The flora contains some 2700 species, of which about 18% are legumes. There are actually no young plants of these legumes that we could find in weeks of walking through various parts of the southern Baja region. Within fenced domains where the herbivores are kept out, there are occasional young legume plants. However, since water is a scarce and precious resource, and since there have been only inches of rain during the past two years, few legumes germinate and grow even in these protected environments. Occasional succulent plants survive in the shelter of the very spiny and recumbent cacti (Creeping Devils, Lemaireocereus eruca and L. gummosus ) but these were never legumes, just other not quite so spiny kinds.
Why are the legumes so important. There are several reasons.1. They provide mottled shade for young plants of many families. Once the young are established they can outgrow their legume nurses that have protected them from the intense and dessicating sun.2. Nursing by legumes is done not only by providing shade, but by their ability to fix nitrogen on their roots by providing cellular structures that are housing for rhizobial bacteria. These useful microbes increase the fertility of the soil and provide nutrients essential for the growth of many other kinds of plants such as grasses and daisies.3. Legumes provide nectar and pollen for bees, flies, wasps and other pollinators. By sheltering other kinds of plants that also provide nectar, pollen and shelter for a host of other pollinators, the legumes are primary in ensuring pollination and hence seed set for many, many kinds of plants. So, when the legumes are extincted by grazing, so are the pollinators and the difficulty in rebuilding the ecosystem is compounded. Furthermore, since seed supplies in a broad range of plants is reduced and eliminated, the mammals and birds that eat them are also diminished and hence the carnivores also are reduced in numbers. Thus the whole ecosystem of organisms, the web of life is threatened, reduced and destroyed. The legumes are the third largest group of plants, following the orchids and the daisies. There are about 659 genera and 16729 species. I estimate that about 80% of these grow in sub-tropical and tropical conditions. Of these perhaps half are from desert ecosystems. So about 7000 species are under stress from overgrazing. Thus the basic sustaining force of diversity in the tropical desert ecosystems, the legumes, which are the core of the fertility and vitality for the entire multidiversity of organisms are being wiped out. For this major group of plants to have incipient extinction throughout its natural domain is an ecological crisis of unprecedented magnitude. That it ramifies throughout the interconnected living food web impacting mammals and birds is a ongoing consequence.
What I saw is an age stratified society with a disproportionately large population of aged plants, stark in their increasingly sterile isolation. The magnificent cardon, Pachycereus pinglei, a giant cactus, close relative of the sahuaro (Carnegia gigantea ) that grows in the SW USA deserts, tipifies the local Baja landscape with huge trunks, a few giant branches, white flowers 20 feet above my head, pecked out and hollowed nests for owls, and no young ones. Once the notion that there were no young presented itself, I began looking for young cardon. After three weeks and no young, I asked a local farmer who had lived all 46 years if his life in the bioregion if he had ever seen a young cardon. "No, senor". Estimates of the age of the majestic old cacti is from 200-500 years old. Walking down a river of crystalline white quartz sand in a wash running between low rounded hills of red clay impregnated with rocks of all sizes, there were huge stocky-trunked twisted-limb legumes of several genera and species (Cercidium, Parkinsonia, Pithecellobium, Acacia, Prosopis). Some were awe-inspiring massive trees that have provided shelter for many kinds of creatures for hundreds of years. Like the cardon cacti, there were no young plants of these legume species. Estimates of the age of the remaining old trees is 200-400 years old.
Of many species, even the older plants are scarce. What are we to do? Collect seeds of the remaining species. Focus on legumes, include as many other kinds as possible. Plant the seeds and bring up new generations of a wide diversity of plant kinds that can inhabit the tropical desert ecosystems. Fence out herbivores and plant legumes. Introduce new young plants of the ancients that have been the core of the sustainable flora. Collect eco-overlapping genera and species on a world basis to broaden the base of conservation. Plant kinship gardens to provide educational and living germplasm resources for the current and future generations. Nourish the return of the pollinators and the reestablishment of the complex web of organisms that provides and living and viable future for all life. Practice sustainable organic agriculture and species hyperdensification in caretaking the biosphere. Ecosanity.
Dr Kapuler is Seed Breeding Consultant to Sow Organic Seed Company"

A Preliminary Kinship Garden Layout for the New Ordinal Taxonomy of the Angiosperms

by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. and Kusra Kapuler
Comment by AMK as of 1-16-2005: new aspects of relationships among living organisms are now continually being revealed by the 'omic' sciences. The following paper written several years ago combined molecular biology with kinship gardening. In the interrum, the APG (Angiosperm Phylogeny Group) has updated their work (2003) and I will update the biodiversity based kinship gardening layout for the world flora in the near future.

In 1998, in a series of articles published in the the Annals of the Missouri Botanical Garden, the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group, a brilliant assemblage of botanically inclined folks, presented what is the first major revision of the tree of life of all the flowering plants that grow on earth since its presentation by Linneaus in the mid 1700's(1).The systematics of flowering plants as established by Linneaus and practiced by legions of biologists during the last 3 centuries has been based on external, morphological characteristics emphasizing the reproductive system. Up to now, the flowers have determined the way we see natural order among the diversity of a third of a million species. Given the size of the DNA of plants, 25,000 genes for Arabidopsis, for example, perhaps 3-5% determine the flowers. So our phylogeny for the plants has been based on only a small part of the total genetic aspect of the plants. Hence closely related plants that are very different in appearance would be misplaced in previous structure-based systems.
Deciphering the genes is a major revelation of our times. We are unraveling the mystery of the tree of life in all its fineness and extraordinary detail, accurate to sequences and patterns of DNA bases that are being compared organism to organism to give totally new understandings about how life is as it is. This molecular insight is generating a new look into the tree of life of the flowering plants.
Several genes in plants, some in the chloroplastids, relic symbiotic bacteria that live inside plant cells, others in the nuclei of the cell themselves, have been examined and compared for a wide and deep variety of flowering plants. Following rules of the science of cladistics, the branching patterns of inheritance that have recorded thru countable and large numbers of generations, the way genes and traits give rise to leaves, flowers, pollen, food and fertility, a new pattern has been discerned in many of the relationships. Our previous working model for the world flora was the fruit of the Classic Era in Plant Taxonomy. From Linneaus and Hooker to Dahlgren and Thorne, from Engler, Prantl and Reichenbach to Willis and Liberty Hyde and Zoe Bailey, from Bessey and Gray to Cronquist and Takhtajan, the morphological view developed its outlook and we have used it as a basis for planting kinship gardens. Now a new era arises, based on the molecular information that is part of the emerging science of genomics. By examining the new system in context of the old, we see that a large part of the older system was accurate and that the preeminant botanists of the past several hundred years did a remarkable work in fitting together the puzzle of diversity.
However, several important aspects of the world flora were not understood. "Maybe it was the roses". Indeed the relationship among major groups including the myrtles, the roses, the cotton alliance, the citrus alliance, the ericas and several other large alliances has been reassessed, rearranged and become easier to understand.
The process of integrating the mosaic of more than 300,000 plant species has already taken more than 250 years. We are working towards a system of relationships among the major groups of plants that allows for kinship gardens that maximize diversity in all gaian ecosystems.
  The first diagram is a simplified version of the major groups of flowering plants as presented by the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group. The angiosperms found well represented in the fossil record both as plants and pollen we call 'The Old Ones' and includes the Magnoliales, the Piperales, the Proteales and the Laurales. From these branch the Monocots. Then follow the Eudicots, the Core Eudicots, and the Asterid and Rosid clades.
The major changes that take place in going from the classical morphological taxonomy of Linneaus to the molecular taxonomy of the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group thus far are the following:APG  Monocots:
   1. The largest group of plants, the orchids (Orchidales) become part of the Asparagales, making it the largest plant order. Although it is not explicitly clear how the orchids branch from the hyacinths, alliums and terrestrial probably temperate zone saprophytes of Laurasian supercontinent, what has been learned is that the irises too are shifted from the lily order (Liliales) to the Asparagales and that the connection between the orchids and the irises needs further clarification. For the Asparagales and Liliales, we have used the descriptive term 'Asparagoids' to parallel the 'Commelinoids' used by the the APG for the alliance of the Poales, Zingiberales, Bromeliales and Arecales. It seems likely that further work will support moving the Bromeliales from the Commelinoids to the Asparagoids together with the Vellozias.2. The aroids (Araceae) are now part of the Alismatales, the Water Plantain Order.3. The Yam Order (Dioscoreales) now includes the Burmanniaceae and becomes an order distinct from the Lily Superorder.4. The Palms (Arecaceae) and the Banana Order (Zingiberales) become orders in a new supergroup, the Commelinoids, which also includes the Poales and Commelinales. The Cattails (Typhaceae) are now included in the Grass Alliance (Poales).5. The Pandanales is separated from the Arecales and gains the Velloziaceae which is moved from the Bromeliads. The Bromeliaceae is its own family as yet unassigned to an order.6. The Liliales which have lost the Iridaceae has gained the Smilacaceae, Philesiaceae, Luzuriagaceae and Ripogonaceae.7. The Acorales becomes a new order of 2 species in a single genus, Acorus.
APG Dicots:There are many significant changes in the dicots and we only highlight some of the most striking and directly useful to gardeners.1. 'The Old Ones' now include the Proteales such that these Australians and South African plants are included in the longterm stable gene pool of Gaian ecosystems.2. The Core Eudicots is an enlarged Caryophyllales, now including several disparate groups including the Santalales (mistletoes), the Vitaceae (grapes) and the Saxifragales, split off from the Rosales and bringing the Crassulaceae closer to the succulents of the Mesembryanthemaceae (iceplants), Basellaceae and Portulacaceae. Buckwheats and Limoniums (statice) are also in this group.3. The Asterids, Euasterids 1 and 2 make up the Asterid Clade. Asterids have seen an expansion of the Ericales to include many groups previously dispersed in other orders while retaining the Cornales.Hydrangeas are split from the Dipsacales now in Euasterids 2.4. Eurosids 1 becomes a major group is this new layout. The Citrus Superorder (Rutanae) has been redistributed. So has the Violanae. Their members have been relocated primarily in the Eurosids 1 and 2. Also brought together in Eurosids 1 are the Fabales, increased with the Polygalaceae which has papilionaceous flowers like the Fabaceae, and the Rosales which have gained the Urticales, moved from the Cotton Alliance (Malvanae). The Eurosids 2 has 4 Orders. One is the Malvales and includes the Bombacaceae, Tiliaceae and the Sterculiaceae as well as the Malvaceae. The other three are the Myrtales, the Brassicales and the Sapindales. The inclusion of the Myrtales in the Eurosids 1 is very different from previous taxonomies and makes sense of some of the kin traits held by members of the Fabales and the Myrtales.5. Eurosids 1 has most of the temperate fruits. Eurosids 2 has most of the tropical fruits. There is a large temperate zone node between Eurosids 1 and Eurosids 2 which includes part of the legumes, the brassicas, the beeches, birches, roses and related taxa. That the new layout makes sense of ecological and environmental aspects of the plants does much to recommend it. Cladistic analyses of plant phylogenetic relationships based on molecular data will continue to emerge from the increasing amount of genomic research done with many groups. Discoveries of new genera and species of plants also continue at a steady pace such that during the past 9 years more than 21,000 new species have been described(2).
This is a new working model of the flowering plants. Finer details can be found at family and tribal levels. These levels will be presented in subsequent Peace Seeds Resource Journals. Meanwhile we encourage you to explore the new layout, compare it with the one generated from flower morphology taxonomy and to investigate the construction of kinship gardens based on these insights.
   Conclusion: These new kinship layouts can be used to plant conservation gardens that maximize diversity. The new phylogeny of the flowering plants (APG system) is both very different and very similar to the phylogeny generated by the flowers. It improves our understanding of relationships that heretofore have been obscure. We expect that further molecular cladistic analyses will continue to improve our understanding of the plant tree of life and to provide an increasingly better working model for the world flora.
1. Angiosperm Phylogeny Group 1998 An Ordinal Classification for the Families of Flowering Plants, Ann. of the Missouri Bot. Gard. 85:531-553.2. Prance, G.T., H. Beentje, J. Dransfield and R. Johns 2000 The Tropical Flora Remains Undercollected, Ann. Missouri Bot. Gard. 87:67-71.

"What About GMO's (Genetically Modified Organisms)???"

by Alan M. Kapuler PhD Peace Seeds A Planetary Gene Pool Resource and Service Corvallis, Oregon

GMO's constitute an important issue in our lives.
Insertion of genes from one unrelated organism to another (from bacteria to plants, for example) creates chimaeras, living examples of mythical beasts containing pieces from various organisms like the Sphinx of Egypt which is part woman, part bird, part lion. Now we are making organisms that are part virus, part bacterium, part fungus, part plant and part animal.
The idea is both seductive and attractive.
In terms of healing, medicine, aging, wellness there are many reasons for wanting molecular biology to improve our lives and cure our ills.
However, many of the organizations developing biotech are motivated by greed, profit and ego, not the wellbeing and health of humanity. Then the science of gene insertion is underdeveloped. Gene transfer is sloppy, inexact and hence there exists a set of potential dangers including the activation of viruses latent in our own genetic material. We are tampering with Pandora's Helix.
Care and patience are critical as we experiment with life itself. Shallow speed under the aegis of greed rules the introduction of GMO's into our food system.
We are living in the time of technologies; radioactivity, computers, nanotech, biotech. Some were introduced into our lives as great developments in science, like radio-isotopes, which has given us weapons of atomic dust and uncleanable pollution.
Better living thru chemistry was a slogan of my childhood.
Now we are reaping the consequences of misuse of toxic chemicals cancer and other chronic illnesses, poisons in the soil and the food. And now we are asked to accept the genetic manipulation of our food under a wide umbrella of reasons. The often repeated claim that we need GMO's to grow enough food to feed the world is a lie; distribution and access are the reasons for famine and poverty.
And genetic pollution of the biosphere is the unavoidable consequence.
And why are we in such a rush to transgene our foot/plants? Ownership, property and control. Yet the plants pre-existed us, have their own domain and are truly a resource for all of us.
So under the scheme of genetic engineering are another set of agendas that reduce the diversity of the biosphere, the value of our lives and the health of humanity.

Peace Seeds A Retrospective

1973-2003 Thirty Years Later

written by A.M. Kapuler Ph.D.with corrections and amendations by Linda Sylvester Kapuler & Dylana KapulerThe Early Years

Conceived in unity and born for the common good, as part of the back to the land movement inspired by the consciousness revolution of the '60's, 2 Al's and a Linda founded Stonebroke Hippie Seeds in a $90 a month rental house in Jacksonville Oregon in 1975. We knew little about gardening, less about seed saving and nothing about business. A few years later we changed the name to Peace Seeds.Here is a true story: Mushroom was standing by the sink cleaning seeds from a Buttercup Winter Squash, putting the internal pulp and seeds into the compost bucket when it occurred to him that three months later he would buy a packet of the same seeds costing the equivalent of an hour's work in the gladiolus field where he was glad to get $1.92 takehome pay while in reality he could save the very seeds he was tossing out, completing the cycle of saving the seeds from the foodplants he and his family had grown in their backyard garden Completing the cycle, from plant to seed to plant, endlessly with thousands of cultivars in most all the foodplants of the temperate zone on planet Earth was our dharma for the next twenty years. From the outset we were organic, we were hip that poisoning the earth with 'cides and synthetic fertilizers was not the way to adundance, goodness and biodiversity. At first we turned the land by hand, double deep digging, by choice;. Later on tillers and tractors came into our lives like credit cards and bank accounts. Persistently we collected and amplified seed stocks of the best hierlooms that came our way. On a visit one year to Frances Hoffman in Nampa Idaho, we saw huge amaranth plants with long thick spikes the she likened to elephants in her garden. She raccounted that the heirloom seeds had been passed on since the 1880's by devoted woman gardeners and originally came from Germany. Some 20 years later a visitor from Peru saw one in our garden and exclaimed "Quihuicha" She identified it as one of the ancient staple Andean grains. So the seeds went from Peru to Germany to us. An early paradigm was 'seeds are atoms'. Inscrutible, True It was the radical hippie era, salads, the main staple of our diets had a minimum of 20-30 kinds of leaves, roots and flowers. Non-violence (ahimsa) was a major interest. Meditation on the mad violence and misuses-of energy in our- world-led to scrutiny of the human food system. Discoveries were made that reduced the amount of killing in our day by day eating and growing process. Tops of carrots, radishes, parsnips, turnips were replanted to give new roots or at least to flower and make seed. Garlic and onion bottoms were replanted. They regrew. This process 'snibbitting' encouraged a different view of life, a gentler and more loving touch in the connection between growing food and nuturing our loved ones. We ate and replanted the same garlic for three years. We saw in the apples and other roseaceous fruits the core of a perennial, non-violent food system, for temperate zone humanity. The world spins and we city-kids became gardeners and farmers, falling in love with one another and life itself. Alan Venet, Linda Sylvester and A1 Kapuler worked beyond the norm and into the future from an infinite present that gave us daily miracles in the garden. Our experience progressed from human foodplant cultivars to the planetary genome pool. Our interests expanded to include the local oregonian species, the endangered and extincting bioregional species, and the world flora Peace Seeds, initially A Planetary Gene Pool Service and now A Planetary Genome-Pool Resource and Service was born from the need to provide a way to conserve biodiversity, from the stoned tripping high dream of peace and goodness for everyone, and from the derelection of humanity allowing the ongoing destruction of the biological world.
The Middle Years: After saving the seeds for hundreds of cultivars, we began to search for a way to understand the structure of plant diversity. We wanted to grow and collect kinds central to the biodiversity of the world. So we carne to Rolf Dahlgren and his bubble mapping system which allowed us to represent the groups of plants in a way that facilitates a kind of gardening that optimizes diversity, Olaf Brentmar and Mushroom worked together in the beginnings of what we then called 'coevolutionary gardening'. In its subsequent development, we call it 'kinship gardening'. Kinship gardening optimizes diversity, provides guideways for permaculture and is very interesting.Another story: Mushroom was quite upset after a sister got on his case for talking about kingdoms of organisms. She, quite rightly, pointed out that slugs, slime mold, bacteria and daisies have no kings, that it's a human thing and as such misconstrues the actual relationships among organisms. He told his sad tale of the paradox of name and meaning to Linda and she thought for a few minutes and said "why don't you take the g out of kingdom since that gives you kindom? Isn' that what you've been talking about anyway? Kin. And that was another fundamental paradigm change. Mushroom was quite upset after a sister got on his case for talking about kingdoms of organisms. She, quite rightly, pointed out that slugs, slime mold, bacteria and daisies have no kings, that it's a human thing and as such misconstrues the actual relationships among organisms. He told his sad tale of the paradox of name and meaning to Linda and she thought for a few minutes and said "why don't you take the g out of kingdom since that gives you kindom? Isn' that what you've been talking about anyway? Kin. And that was another fundamental paradigm change. Kinship gardens flourished during the era when Al Kapuler, became Research Director of Seeds of Change. Seeds of Change, a national organic seed company, brought certified, organically grown seeds- of hundreds of heirlooms, open pollinated and originally developed flower and foodplants to tens of thousands of gardeners. We support the connection between the seeds and the plants with whole cycles, with the needs for fertility enhancing regimes in our composts, cover crops, rotations, and in the grexes that come from mufti-mixed hybrid populations of choice cultivars as a way to adapt vegetables and flowers to our own ecosystems and to radical weather. In the process we discovered that many F1 hybrids give rise to stable and valuable lines after a few generations. So after growing Sweet 100 Tomato for a decade and saving seeds yearly, we had a open pollinated line which we called Peacevine Cherry Tomato. Some years later a study of Vitamin C content in 35 varieties of cherry tomatoes found Peacevine Cherry to be the highest, higher, even than its parent. Another successful open pollinated line from a hybrid is True Gold Sweet Corn from Golden Jubilee Sweet Corn. While we explored kinship gardens of annual temperate zone foodplants, family level kinship gardens of the Asteraceae (daisies), Solanaceae (tomato, potato family). Apiaceae (carrots) Lamiaceae (mints), and the world flora, including one inside a 30'x96' greenhouse, that flourishes to this day, Mushroom continued to explore directions for nutritional selection based on the free amino acids that are used by our cells to make proteins. He came to this from the crossection of reality and the road. Many times, as a vegetarian on the move he'd stop in at any one of innumerable cafes for a plate of french fried potatoes. On one particular occasion, looking intently at the potatoes while lavishly pouring ketsup on them, he thought 'the food value in these fried potatoes is nil so it must be in the tomato sauce".. Remarkably, the juices of fruits and vegetables have several to many of the 21 amino acids used to build proteins. Tomatoes have 17/21, and 6 in goodly amounts.  Dr. Sarangamat Gurusiddiah of Washington State University in Pullman Washington collaborated with us for many years in doing hundreds of high pressure liquid chromatography analyses for free amino acids in the juices of the organically grown vegetables and flowers we were growing. Free amino acids of the kinds used to build proteins are found in the petals of sunflowers and marigolds, in snap beans and snap peas, in squash and yacon, in carrots and broccoli (green more than white), in sweet corn, in gobo, in cabbage and kale, in tomatoes and potatoes (as much free aminos as in protein-3% each), in zucchini and winter squash, in onions, garlic, leeks, in beets and in giant groundcherries, in chicories and radicchios. in the new growth of bamboo, the root of the licorice plant, in the tops of fenugrek and shungiku, in arugula and the roots of black salsify.
 The '90's: After Seeds of Change bought the mail order business of Peace Seeds turning it into Deep Diversity, Al Kapuler began earnestly to breed for the public domain as part of a program to provide meritable new introductions based on nutrition and originality. All our seeds are bred using classical genetics giving us and the gardening public open pollinated true-breeding lines. The opportunity to provide unique cultivars for the organic community was an inspiration. Now we have the Martian Purple Sweet Corns, Tiger's Eye Sunflowers, the tall and grand Marigolds including Red Metamorph, China Cat, Orange Sunshine, La Ribera, and Nutribud Broccoli, Swanlake Melons, Gaia Snap Bush Beans, True Gold, True Platinum, Rainbow Inca, Martian Jewels, Double Red and Antholutea Sweet Corns, Savoy Kales, Turnip Grex, Three Beet Grex, Pearls of Heaven and Newburg Onions, Opal Creek, Sugaree and Green Beauty Vine Peas, Purple Parsley Bush Peas, Early Moonbeam Watermelons, Endurance, Gloriosa, Sunshine and Dragon's Fire Sunflowers ..... As Peace Seeds had moved north of its birthplace to Corvallis, Alan Venet and Cheryl Lee began Southern Oregon Organics, another seed company devoted to heirlooms, organics and ecosanity. Several years later they began a collaboration with David Seber leading to the Internet organic seed company Sow Organic Seeds found at and gardening in Williams, in southwestern Oregon The changing era and the discoveries of molecular biology brought genetically modified organisms into our awareness, our food stores and our lives. Now GMO's, the patenting and ownership of living creatures and the consequences of scientific discoveries in the realm of cells, viruses and macromolecules are increasingly prominant in our concerns.
The New Millenium 2000 and beyond With the introduction of transgenic chimaerics into the biosphere, a new era of life has begun. These experiments in the genetics of foodplants laced with genes from viruses, bacteria, fungi and other creatures are being tested on humanity, unlabelled and regarded as safe. in many foods, mostly processed as if to disguise their origin. Among the alternatives to the slaughterhouse food system are widespread gardens, extensive cultivation of soybeans for tofu, miso, tamari, tempeh and edamame, cultivation of gourmet and medicinal mushrooms, biodiverse silvaculture, water, soil and species conservation and Mollisonian permaculture. As an alternative to GMO's, from the Andes come many ancient, generationally tested foodplants of great value. While we are familiar with potatoes, peppers (Capsicums) and winter squash (Cucurbita maxima) which are native to the Andes, these montane ecosystems have given rise to other useful crops including yacon, oca, maca, zambo, arracacia, the Andean lupin, mashua, mauka, ulluco, and others. Consider this example: Yacon is a relative of the sunflower, the jerusalem artichoke, the dahlia, with large sweet tubers. It has several merits. The tubers contain inulin, a polymer of fructose that is not digested by our alimentary canal but is metabolized by the lactobacilli in our large intestine. Thus it feeds us B Vitamins, including B-12. Yacon plants have central crowns of eyes used for propagation, Laterally and extending to underneath the crown are the edible storage tubers, to 2 pounds, that are virtually tasteless on harvest but that sweeten up after several weeks in storage at room temperature. This is an example of a non-violent food plant. It provides a delicious vegetable containing the free amino acids isoleucine, valine, asparagine and glutamine. Then too, in our Willamette Valley garden, transplanting a greenhouse grown crown division in a gallon or 2 gallon pot gives about 10 pounds of tubers in one growing season of April to November. They like lots of water during summer and early fall. We have gardened in the Willamette Valley for fourteen years. It has been our good fortune to lease 2.5 acres with deep and fertile soil and abundant water. Currently, our annual seed list is 2 pages with 75 cultivars. In 2003, we grew about 150 pounds of the tuberous, edible rooted Shamrock plant (oxalis), the second most common Andean foodplant. At the turn of the millenium, Al Kapuler retired from Seeds of Change and resumed Peace Seeds. Development of more nutritious crops for the Willamette Valley, Oregon, the Cascadia Bioregion, the localization of our activity to our ecological correspondances, the economical and efficient use of our energy resources, increasing use of microorganisms to enhance our gardening, these things interest us now. We continue to work for Peace, overcoming and persisting through our own frailties and lack of insight, growing further into breeding for the public domain, selecting and developing nutritionally improved cultivars, and engaging kinship gardens where and whenever possible promoting gardening, conservation, organics and biodiversity.
Acknowledgements and Appreciation Extensive thanks go to many folks for their myriad contributions to Peace Seeds and a healthy, fertile world. The following are some of the most prominant contributors: Eric Ackerson, Doug Ackland, Alan Adesse, Aprovecho, Monk Bergin, Jerry Black, Lindsay Bradshaw, Olaf Brentmar, Alice and Hal Brown, Heather Coburn, Craig Crowder, Carol Deppe, Don Eminhiser, Ianto Evans, Yvonne Frost, Peter Gilman, Kathy Ging, Green Journey's Steve and Aline, J.J. Haapala, Gabriel Howearth, Frances Hoffman, Scott Jarvis, Carl Jones, Kusra Kapuler, Lester Ketchie, Tracy and Dan Lamblin, Peter Liebes, Lost Valley Educational Center, Peter Miller, Steve Northway, Rich Pecoraro, Jennifer Peterson, Christian Petrovich, Joe Reeder, Steve Rose, Chris Roth, Marcus LaRusso, Bina Schulte, Seed Saver's Exchange, Howard Yana Shapiro, Hope Shepherd, Curtis Showell, George Stevens, John Sundquist, Taylor, Craig Thomas, Tobias, Louisa Tompkins, Scott Vlaun, Judy Weiner, Ken Williams, Frank and Susan Wise, Coelesta Yeoman and the many other people who have planted, weeded and shared with us the work, joy and trials of life. Distinguished thanks go to Dr. Robert Nagourney for successfully treating Mushroom's lymphoma. Since the mid 1980's, we have published eccentrically with a 3-4 year interval the Peace Seeds Resource Journal. The last issue was Volume 9, 2001. These journals provide an ongoing account of our work with kinship gardening, free amino acid nutrition in our foodplants, the phylogenetics of food plant orders and families under headings of Planetary Ecology, Gardening, Botanical Science, Health and Nutrition. Special thanks to Bob Dylan, Joan Baez. The Beatles and The Grateful Dead.
The following three articles are from Dr. Kapuler's "2001 Peace Seed Research Journal". They are about GMO's and plant species preservation. Following the papers there are descriptions of the Peace Seed Research Journals available through our "Books and Journals" sales icon coming soon.
It has been many years since our beginnings as organic seed farmers. The issues that drove us then have become even more relevant in these real and uncertain times. Thank you Alan for the light you show and I hope many of our interested customers and friends consider your journal as part of their libraries.

Life Sciences

Life Sciences

Biographic introduction by Alan Venet: Dr. Alan Kapuler (Seed Breeder Consultant to Sow Organic Seed Company has been our friend and teacher since our first "back to the land" experiences of the early 1970's. By 1978, we had begun the first "organic-open pollinated" seed service as an extension of growing our own food. Dr. Kapuler's education includes undergraduate at Yale University and graduate work at the Rockefeller Institute in Manhattan. Bio-genetics and the science of life was his field of study as the modern era of science was unfolding in the 50's and 60's. It was his continuous scientific inquiry into the life around us that got "Stonebroke Hippie" seed company started from the study of harmlessness, leading us to replant living carrot and beet tops in the garden and growing the next generation of seeds from what we were eating. As years long learning experiences those beginning years were invaluable and got us on the road to seeds. As early as 1980 Alan was thinking of what vegetable had what true nutritional properties. In some years we grew dozens of tomato varieties, but what was in them nutritionally? The year that Dr. Kapuler looked for amino acids in tomatoes with thin layer chromatography on the countertop of our farmhouse was a meeting of awakening science and traditional food production that we got to see at home. Learning and knowledge have been around us all these years and in the present issues of health, nutrition, sustainability, etc. are topics of garden talk everywhere. People eat!
Our premier breeding source, Dr. Al Kapuler is making available Three Articles of interest to organic gardeners. Be sure to check out Dr Kapuler's page are descriptions:
Article 1 " Peace Seeds Retrospective 1973-2003- 30 Years Later" 5 pages $2.00 By Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D.
Article 2 "Free Amino Acids in Vegetables" By Sarangamat Gurusiddiah Ph.D. and Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. These scientists collaborated for many years analyzing the free amino acid content of hundreds of samples of juices from organically grown vegetables, leaves, flowers and roots. This is a xerox copy of the original papers from Peace Seeds research Journals Vols 4,5,6,7,8(2) (1988-1997) which makes 6 articles with results of high performance liquid chromatographic analysis for most of our temperate garden foods. Legumes whose immature pods are favorites in summer gardem (snap peas and beans) have the highest amounts of total free amino acids. In some foods, glutamine, one of the energy sources for our brains is abundant. Tomatoes with 17 of the 21 amino acids used to build proteins are free amino acid nutritious and, in potatoes where 3% of the tubers are protein, there is another 3% of protein value in the free amino acids in the juice 64 Pages $20.00
Article 3 " Kinship Gardening" The two best articles from Peace Seeds Journal (with recent family level layouts) by Alan M. Kapuler Ph.D. Appearances are frequently deceptive as analyses of whole genomes of organisms is revealing many unsuspected patterns in the relationship of genes to the specific and unique structures and activities of cells. since the cells build the bodies we call animals, plants, toadstools, seaweeds and the teeming herd of microbes, growing gardens encourages these resources, life based resources, and within the core of resources is oue experience with diversity. How deep is the gene pool, how far ranging the detailed knowledge of genomes of many organisms from humans to archaea? how do we develop our energies for the conservation and, perhaps, construction of gardens optimized in genus, species, tribe, family and order diversity in the quarter million species of plants on earth? Do we consult the Planetary Atlas of Organisms to find out the ecological correspondences of the backyard garden? Do we experiment with 120 kinds of tomatoes, and save the seeds of the best? What makes the best? So we begin building gardens that emphasize tree of life connections, kin:siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents, great grandparents, 80,000 human generations of grandparents in the interdependent interaction of people with plants. Now, we are laying out gardens based on this kinship notion. One year we did kinship gardening for the major families of temperature zone food plants (chenopodiaceae, amaranthaceae, fabaceae, asteraceae, brassicaceae, cucurbitacae, alliaceae, apiaceae, solanaceae, poaceae, lamiaceae) learning the substructure of the tribes, subtribes and genera and planting out our layouts. It takes collecting as many kinds as possible in a genus, or family and making a garden of them in a way to give insight into their basic affinities; a garden based on an inside view, a genotypic view. During the years of building Peace Seeds and developing Seeds of Change, kinship layouts were developed for most of the temperate zone food families (legumes, daisies, mints, solanums, cucurbits, brassicas, alliums, carrots, roses) they were published and distributed eccentrically, so we have reprinted and bound them together along with two of our best kinship gardening articles, the hands on "An Ark for the Plants" and the new phylogeny form the Angiosperm Phylogeny Group applied to our kinship gardening layouts. 37 Pages $15.00
These publication are available from: Alan M. Kapuler 2385 SE Thompson St. Corvallis, Or 97333Please include $1.00 S+H for Article #1, $2.00 S+H for articles 2 and 3