Ethnobotany: plants and people
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Ethnobotany: plants and people
Plants and peoples and their interactions
Curated by Eve Emshwiller
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Michael Twitty on Culinary Injustice at MAD3 - YouTube

Learn more about culinary historian Michael Twitty's presentation at MAD3 on the MADfeed: http://tmblr.co/Z462xt-Vv4Rw
Eve Emshwiller's insight:

I will definitely show to ethnobotany class.  "Yum, yum, yummy."

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Community Biodiversity Management book is freely avaialable on line

Community Biodiversity Management book is freely avaialable on line | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research. Platform for Agrobiodiversity Research. Home · About us ... Bookmark and Share. Filed under: Publications. Tags: agrobiodiversity, Farmer, knowledge, natural resources management ...


Via Luigi Guarino
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Download it!

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The History Blog » Blog Archive » 1000-year-old vineyards found in Basque Country

The History Blog » Blog Archive » 1000-year-old vineyards found in Basque Country | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

"Archaeologists from the University of the Basque Country have unearthed the tell-tale signs of viticulture dating to the 10th century at the archaeological site of Zaballa, in the Álava province of Basque Country, northern Spain. Zaballa is one of 300 rural settlements in the Álava region that were deserted hundreds of years ago. It’s the one that has been most thoroughly excavated and published."

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The Archaeology of Beer

The Archaeology of Beer | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it
Dogfish Head’s ancient, hybrid brews embody a past before ale and wine became separate categories.
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Crioconservacion de recursos geneticos de tuberculos y raices andinos en el Peru

Crioconservacion de recursos geneticos de tuberculos y raices andinos en el Peru | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

Via International Potato Center (CIP)
Eve Emshwiller's insight:

Includes oca.

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International Potato Center (CIP)'s curator insight, November 14, 2013 10:58 AM

Panta, A.; Zea, B.; Sanchez, D.; Tay, D.; Roca, W.  2013. Crioconservacion de recursos geneticos de tuberculos y raices andinos en el Peru. IN: Gonzalez-Arnao, M.T.; Engelmann, F. (eds.). Criocoservacion de plantas en American Latina y el Caribe. San Jose, Costa Rica. IICA. pp.175-196.

http://repiica.iica.int/docs/B3099E/B3099E.PDF

Una de las principales funciones del CIP es desarrollar tecnologias para la conservacion de recursos fitogeneticos. El CIP ha integrado las colecciones mas grandes de recursos geneticos de los tres tuberculos mas importantes de la zona alto-andina: papa, oca, y ulluco. En el CIP las colecciones de germoplasma se conservan en el campo, en invernaderos, en forma de semilla botanica en camaras frias e in vitro mediante la aplicacion de tecnicas de cultivo de tejidos bajo crecimiento lento.

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Disease and Agriculture in Mississippian Period N. America | Bones ...

Disease and Agriculture in Mississippian Period N. America | Bones ... | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it
Diseases are an interesting thing. The development and location of an area can drastically change the types of diseases present, and which are most deadly. If you look at global health maps, such as HealthMap, you can see ...

Via Nanci J.
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Following tradition: Top examples of indigenous knowledge preserving biodiversity, ecosystem service

Following tradition: Top examples of indigenous knowledge preserving biodiversity, ecosystem service | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it
With the planet losing species 100 to 1,000 times faster than the natural extinction rate, international experts assembling for high-level global biodiversity meetings say knowledge co-production with indigenous peoples has growing importance.
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Trends in Plant Science - Botanical insecticides inspired by plant–herbivore chemical interactions

Botanical insecticides inspired by plant–herbivore chemical interactions

From Trends in Plant Science - Saber Miresmailli,Murray B. Isman

 

Plants have evolved a plethora of secondary chemicals to protect themselves against herbivores and pathogens, some of which have been used historically for pest management. The extraction methods used by industry render many phytochemicals ineffective as insecticides despite their bioactivity in the natural context. In this review, we examine how plants use their secondary chemicals in nature and compare this with how they are used as insecticides to understand why the efficacy of botanical insecticides can be so variable. If the commercial production of botanical insecticides is to become a viable pest management option, factors such as production cost, resource availability, and extraction and formulation techniques need be considered alongside innovative application technologies to ensure consistent efficacy of botanical insecticides.


Via Annals of Botany: Plant Science Research
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Annals of Botany: Plant Science Research's curator insight, November 21, 2013 3:56 AM
HighlightsChemical defense is not the only type of defense that plants use for protection.Botanical pesticides are not directly comparable to synthetic pesticides.Lack of standards cause significant variability in the efficacy of botanical pesticides.Destructive extraction of plant chemicals negate most of the evolutionary successful defensive traits.We examine underlying assumptions that are made when developing botanical products.We identify practical challenges and limitations that need to be addressed.
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East Africa and Madagascar in the Indian Ocean world - Online First - Springer

East Africa and Madagascar in the Indian Ocean world - Online First - Springer | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

The Indian Ocean has long been a forum for contact, trade and the transfer of goods, technologies and ideas between geographically distant groups of people. Another, less studied, outcome of expanding maritime connectivity in the region is the translocation of a range of species of plants and animals, both domestic and wild. A significant number of these translocations can now be seen to involve Africa, either providing or receiving species, suggesting that Africa’s role in the emergence of an increasingly connected Indian Ocean world deserves more systematic consideration. While the earliest international contacts with the East African coast remain poorly understood, in part due to a paucity of archaeobotanical and zooarchaeological studies, some evidence for early African coastal activity is provided by the discovery of early hunter-gatherer sites on offshore islands, and, possibly, by the translocation of wild animals among these islands, and between them and the mainland. From the seventh century, however, clear evidence for participation in the Indian Ocean world emerges, in the form of a range of introduced species, including commensal and domestic animals, and agricultural crops. New genetic studies demonstrate that the flow of species to the coast is complex, with more than one source frequently indicated. The East African coast and Madagascar appear to have been significant centres of genetic admixture, drawing upon Southeast Asian, South Asian and Middle Eastern genetic varieties, and sometimes yielding unique hybrid species. The biological patterns reflect a deeply networked trade and contact situation, and support East Africa’s key role in the events and transformations of the early Indian Ocean world.

 


Via Dorian Q Fuller
Eve Emshwiller's insight:

Looks good to use for the topic on "Global Movement of People and Plants."

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Dorian Q Fuller's curator insight, November 28, 2013 12:04 PM

The latest output of the SEALINKs project, a regional review of the SE East African coast and Madgascar, with an emphasis on the archaeobotanical and archaeozoological evidence, and reviews of key crops, livestock (like chickens) and commensals (from rates to geckos).

Dorian Q Fuller's curator insight, November 29, 2013 5:50 AM

Includes an updated review of the evidence for the arrival of Asian rice in Africa

Dorian Q Fuller's curator insight, November 29, 2013 5:51 AM

This article includes a section reviewing the evidence for the arrival of farming in coastal East Africa and its offshore islands, all quite recents <2000 years, based on current archaeobotanical data.

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PLOS ONE: Sago-Type Palms Were an Important Plant Food Prior to Rice in Southern Subtropical China

PLOS ONE: Sago-Type Palms Were an Important Plant Food Prior to Rice in Southern Subtropical China | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it
Poor preservation of plant macroremains in the acid soils of southern subtropical China has hampered understanding of prehistoric diets in the region and of the spread of domesticated rice southwards from the Yangtze River region. According to records in ancient books and archaeological discoveries from historical sites, it is presumed that roots and tubers were the staple plant foods in this region before rice agriculture was widely practiced. But no direct evidences provided to test the hypothesis. Here we present evidence from starch and phytolith analyses of samples obtained during systematic excavations at the site of Xincun on the southern coast of China, demonstrating that during 3,350–2,470 aBC humans exploited sago palms, bananas, freshwater roots and tubers, fern roots, acorns, Job's-tears as well as wild rice. A dominance of starches and phytoliths from palms suggest that the sago-type palms were an important plant food prior to the rice in south subtropical China. We also believe that because of their reliance on a wide range of starch-rich plant foods, the transition towards labour intensive rice agriculture was a slow process..

Via diana buja
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diana buja's curator insight, May 18, 2013 3:17 AM

A very wide diversity of collected foods.

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Deserts genebank rises from ashes

Deserts genebank rises from ashes | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

Some good news from the Egypt Deserts Gene Bank. This just in from its head, Dr Mohamed Amar: The EDGB was looted and much valuable equipment destroyed during the uprisings in Egypt in February 2011.


Via Luigi Guarino
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American Geographical Society honors Zimmerer with Melamid Medal

American Geographical Society honors Zimmerer with Melamid Medal | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

American Geographical Society honors Zimmerer with Melamid Medal Penn State News Zimmerer is an internationally recognized expert in the fields of historical and landscape-based cultural-and social-ecological analysis of sustainability, food...


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Food Monographs

Food Monographs | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it
This is a collection of videos on food, created by students enrolled in Dr. Quave's "Food, Health and Society" course in the Human Health program at Emory University.
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Dr. Cassandra Quave's students prepared videos on foods for their term projects for the course.

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The Twelve Days of Christmas Plants: Peppermint

The Twelve Days of Christmas Plants: Peppermint | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

This series of posts will highlight the plants that help you celebrate the Yuletide season. From candy canes to lattes, peppermint just tastes like winter. Here’s more on the flora behind the flavor.ob

Peppermint is a sterile hybrid (Mentha × piperita) of watermint (Mentha aquatic) and spearmint (Mentha spicata). Even though it doesn’t produce seeds, it is a prolific propagator via vegetative growth of stolons (plant biology word of the day). In the case of mint, stolons are runners of the root system just below the soil surface that can establish their own root system and plant. Because mint is very good at this, it can be quite invasive once it gets established.

Eve Emshwiller's insight:

Useful link for the module with mentha and yerba buena in Ethnobotany course (comparing medicinal plant use between immigrants and their source countries).

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Christian Allié's curator insight, January 3, 2014 5:25 AM

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..... but there is a physiological reason that peppermint is the flavor of winter. It turns out that the cooling sensation of mint (think breath mints or menthol chest rubs) is not just a marketing gimmick. The main peppermint flavor ingredient, menthol, activates TRPM8 (aka Transient Receptor Potential cation channel subfamily M member 8), which is involved in neuronal signaling of cooling sensations. The action of TRPM8 (a channel that allows for the flux of cations like calcium) is part of the biochemical basis for how mammals sense temperature, innocuous cooling specifically. Because menthol triggers TRPM8 into action at warmer temperatures than it normally would, it makes us feel like we are cooler than we actually are.

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TEDxFIU: Breeding climate resistant crops

TEDxFIU: Breeding climate resistant crops | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it
 
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Eric von Wettberg on importance of crop wild relatives for breeding crops resistant to climate change. Video is less than 10 minutes  

Hat tip: Allison Miller @ajmiller4233

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The irrational nature of pie

The irrational nature of pie | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it
What is a nut, and why is the answer so convoluted? For Thanksgiving, Katherine explores pecans and the very best vegetarian turkey substitute ever: pecan pie.Traditions Thanksgiving is all about t...
Eve Emshwiller's insight:

"Fruit types should be fun, and yet people definitely have entrenched ideas about the right way to classify the fruit of a given species. We botanists seem to get particularly worked up over the definition of a nut ."
 
This engaging post will be fun to share with students when teaching about plant fruit classification. 

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Eve Emshwiller's curator insight, December 28, 2013 12:04 AM
Great fun for teaching crazy fruit classifications.
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Chemistry: A festive ferment : Nature : Nature Publishing Group

Chemistry: A festive ferment : Nature : Nature Publishing Group | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

"Harold McGee surveys a seething array of microbially transformed treats [mdash] from beard beer and grasshopper sauce to extreme herring and armpit cheese.

Rare is the holiday meal that does not owe many of its pleasures to invisible cooks with tongue-twisting names. Do you enjoy charcuterie and pickles? Bread with cultured butter? A drizzle of vinaigrette on this or that? A bit of cheese? Some chocolates? Wine, beer or cider? Then raise a glass to Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Leuconostoc mesenteroides and their ilk, the fungi and bacteria that do the real work of turning blandness into piquant delight."

Eve Emshwiller's insight:

Keep for fermentation topic in ethnobotany class.  Hat tip: @emmathegardener (Emma Cooper)

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People in Mexico Were Using Chili Peppers to Make Spicy Drinks 2400 Years Ago

People in Mexico Were Using Chili Peppers to Make Spicy Drinks 2400 Years Ago | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it
New analysis of the insides of ancient drinkware shows chemical traces of Capsicum species, proof positive that its owners made spicy beverages

Via Meristemi
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PLOS ONE: Reticulated Origin of Domesticated Emmer Wheat Supports a Dynamic Model for the Emergence of Agriculture in the Fertile Crescent

PLOS ONE: Reticulated Origin of Domesticated Emmer Wheat Supports a Dynamic Model for the Emergence of Agriculture in the Fertile Crescent | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

We used supernetworks with datasets of nuclear gene sequences and novel markers detecting retrotransposon insertions in ribosomal DNA loci to reassess the evolutionary relationships among tetraploid wheats. We show that domesticated emmer has a reticulated genetic ancestry, sharing phylogenetic signals with wild populations from all parts of the wild range. The extent of the genetic reticulation cannot be explained by post-domestication gene flow between cultivated emmer and wild plants, and the phylogenetic relationships among tetraploid wheats are incompatible with simple linear descent of the domesticates from a single wild population. A more parsimonious explanation of the data is that domesticated emmer originates from a hybridized population of different wild lineages. The observed diversity and reticulation patterns indicate that wild emmer evolved in the southern Levant, and that the wild emmer populations in south-eastern Turkey and the Zagros Mountains are relatively recent reticulate descendants of a subset of the Levantine wild populations. Based on our results we propose a new model for the emergence of domesticated emmer. During a pre-domestication period, diverse wild populations were collected from a large area west of the Euphrates and cultivated in mixed stands. Within these cultivated stands, hybridization gave rise to lineages displaying reticulated genealogical relationships with their ancestral populations. Gradual movement of early farmers out of the Levant introduced the pre-domesticated reticulated lineages to the northern and eastern parts of the Fertile Crescent, giving rise to the local wild populations but also facilitating fixation of domestication traits. Our model is consistent with the protracted and dispersed transition to agriculture indicated by the archaeobotanical evidence, and also with previous genetic data affiliating domesticated emmer with the wild populations in southeast Turkey. Unlike other protracted models, we assume that humans played an intuitive role throughout the process


Via Dorian Q Fuller
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Dorian Q Fuller's curator insight, December 3, 2013 10:32 PM

This is a really important new study of emmer domestication, from the genetic point of view. It moves beyond the apparently conflicging signals of the many previously published studies that have tried to build trees out of what is within species, reticulate data. Instead, through a network analysis this study indicates that several areas (3?) of the Fertile Crescent were involved in the taking wild materials of emmer into cultivation, and much of the hybridization must have taken place before domestication during pre-domestication cultivation. Much of the distribution of wild emmer is suggested also to be anthropogenic from post-Glacial movement of wideseeds around the region, a process thhat doubtless intensified as early pre-domestication cultivation began.

Ronan Delisle's curator insight, March 13, 2015 11:51 AM

ajouter votre aperçu ...

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The Archaeobotanist: Origins of Rice Podcasts

The Archaeobotanist: Origins of Rice Podcasts | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

Via Dorian Q Fuller
Eve Emshwiller's insight:

Nice podcasts about domestication of rice, featuring both Dorian Fuller (archaeological studies) and Susan McCouch (molecular studies).  

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Dorian Q Fuller's curator insight, November 14, 2013 2:51 AM

Link to recent IRRI radio (Rice Today) interview on the archaeobotany of rice origins (with yours trully)

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Study demonstrates that indigenous hunting with fire helps sustain Brazil's savannas

Study demonstrates that indigenous hunting with fire helps sustain Brazil's savannas | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

Indigenous use of fire for hunting is an unlikely contributor to long-term carbon emissions, but it is an effective environmental management and recovery tool against agribusiness deforestation, a new study from Indiana University and Brazil's...


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Christian Allié's curator insight, December 15, 2013 9:15 AM

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In fact, since 2005, indigenous reserves have been responsible for more than 70 percent of the reduction in deforestation in Brazil, particularly in the Amazon and cerrado, according to study co-author Eduardo Brondizio.

"The Xavante situation at Pimentel Barbosa Reserve is emblematic of a puzzling phenomenon that is increasingly replicated throughout Brazil and the world: the formation of islands of environmental conservation surrounded by large-scale agribusiness," he said.

Brondizio is a professor in the IU Bloomington College of Arts and Sciences' Department of Anthropology and a faculty associate of the Anthropological Center for Training and Research on Global Environmental Change and the Ostrom Workshop in Political Theory and Policy Analysis, both research centers supported by the Office of the Vice Provost for Research at IU Bloomington.

The real challenge to conservation in the cerrado, he said, is not indigenous burning practices but how to achieve long-term sustainability of indigenous lands that are increasingly subsumed by agribusiness expansion. According to Brondizio, Xavante practices offer invaluable lessons regarding ecosystems and conservation.

"The Xavante show us how to maintain and use cultural practices to manage and recover the environment and call attention to the need to consider new governance systems that respect the rights of indigenous populations and promote conservation beyond reserves and protected areas," Brondizio says.



Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2013-12-indigenous-sustain-brazil-savannas.html#jCp
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Indigenous knowledge of seasonal weather forecasting: A case study in six regions of Uganda

Indigenous knowledge of seasonal weather forecasting: A case study in six regions of Uganda | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

Via International Potato Center (CIP)
Eve Emshwiller's insight:

A lot of ethnobotanical research is about Indigenous Knowledge, so even if this isn't about plants, it is still related to ethnobotany.

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International Potato Center (CIP)'s curator insight, December 11, 2013 9:27 AM

Okonya, J.; Kroschel, J. (2013) Indigenous knowledge of seasonal weather forecasting: A case study in six regions of Uganda. Agricultural Sciences, 4, 641-648. doi: 10.4236/as.2013.412086.

Uganda’s system for generating official early warning systems at national, regional, district, or village levels for disaster management is non-existing and this puts farmers and the entire population in the awkward position of being unable to adequately prepare for extreme climatic events. Additionally, the literature has only limited studies detailing actual early warning systems for each of the regions in Uganda and yet each culture has unique traditions of predicting climatic events. There is thus a need to document location-based traditional early warning signs of climatic and weather events used by farmers. This study was therefore undertaken to document local pointers used to forecast the start and end of the rainy and dry seasons over the districts under study.

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A review of palaeobotanical findings of early Vitis in the mediterranean and of the origins of cultivated grape-vines, with special reference to new pointers to prehistoric exploitation in the west...

The presence in S.E. Spain of Vitis vinifera L. seeds at prehistoric siites of the 3rd millennium B.C., and pollen at Quaternary stations, are considered in the light of conflicting views about the origins of cultivation of the grape and their relation to spontaneous and subspontaneous Vitis in Western Mediterranean Europe. It is proposed that new findings from Spain cast doubt on the widely-held view that Vitis exploitation there is no older than Classical times. Botanical as well as archaeological arguments are put forward to support a greater antiquity of exploitation of Vitis in Mediterranean prehistory, based on a critical review of the literature about both palaeobotanical finds of Vitis and the modern distribution of spontaneous Vitis in the Mediterranean basin and adjacent regions.


Via Dorian Q Fuller
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Dorian Q Fuller's curator insight, December 12, 2013 3:15 PM

New evidence for prehistoric use of grapes in Spain.

diana buja's curator insight, December 13, 2013 7:52 AM

Info. on ancient history and distribution of grape vines - it's greater antiquity than normally presented.  There is quite early recording of (domestic?) grapes in ancient Egypt and I'll try to find the reference

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PGR and climate change: The video of the book

PGR and climate change: The video of the book | Ethnobotany: plants and people | Scoop.it

Twenty years ago there was Climatic Change and Plant Genetic Resources. Now there is, ahem, Plant Genetic Resources and Climate Change. If you don’t have the $120-odd for the book, you can always watch the 30-odd minute video.


Via Luigi Guarino
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Crop manuring and intensive land management by Europe’s first farmers

"The spread of farming from western Asia to Europe had profound long-term social and ecological impacts, but identification of the specific nature of Neolithic land management practices and the dietary contribution of early crops has been problematic. Here, we present previously undescribed stable isotope determinations of charred cereals and pulses from 13 Neolithic sites across Europe (dating ca. 5900–2400 cal B.C.), which show that early farmers used livestock manure and water management to enhance crop yields. Intensive manuring inextricably linked plant cultivation and animal herding and contributed to the remarkable resilience of these combined practices across diverse climatic zones. Critically, our findings suggest that commonly applied paleodietary interpretations of human and herbivore δ15N values have systematically underestimated the contribution of crop-derived protein to early farmer diets."

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