An Interdisciplinary Analysis of a Corn-based Seed Saving Network
MetadataShow full item record
The practice of seed saving has the potential to play a critical role in enhancing the adaptive capacity of the U.S. agricultural system through the protection the crop genetic resource base. It is therefore of value to understand seed savers and the networks that connect them in order to assess their contributions to such a system. In this thesis I take an interdisciplinary approach at analyzing a network of corn (Zea mays) seed savers. Through interviews I explore the characteristics of and relationships among seed savers in the hopes of illuminating the strength of the network and its place in the larger agricultural system. Testing seeds for various seedborne fungal genes~ I explore the possibility of interaction between seed savers' practices and the biology of their seeds. This study serves as a foundation for future research in seed saving network analysis and the interactions of social behavior on seed microbial communities.