Tuesday, November 23, 2010

The Land Institute and searching for Wes Jackson

For about a week at the end of October, V. and I took at road trip through the midwest of the USA (Missouri, Kansas, Colorado, Wyoming and Montana).  There were several highlights of the trip with one of them being a stopover in Salina, Kansas and visiting the Land Institute.
I guess I heard about Wes Jackson and the Land Institute sometime about 2 years ago with their work and ideas become more exciting to me the closer to the Prairie land I get.  They are working to develop an agricultural system that builds the ecological resilience of the prairie while providing a grain yield comparable to the current annual crops that are grown across the North America prairies - at the expense of the ecosystems.  
We weren't sure when we'd arrive so didn't get a chance to book a guided tour however the Institute is open access for people to walk around and guide themselves.  I did ring the doorbell of the main building to let them know we were there... and with the hopes that Wes Jackson would answer the door.  :)  He didn't...  but that didn't stop me from peering at every person I saw on site to see if it might be him.  The pictures below are some highlights.  Added now to my list of things to do before I am 40:  attend the Land Institute's annual Prairie Festival.
(Photos from the whole trip can be viewed here.)

The original Land Institute
The new Land Institute

NOT Wes Jackson :(... but a really friendly fellow

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