AGRI 116 Week 6 Notes
AGRI 116 Week 6 Notes AGRI 116 001
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Erin Wade on Thursday September 29, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to AGRI 116 001 at Colorado State University taught by Andrew P. Norton in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 5 views. For similar materials see Plants and Civilizations in Agricultural and Environmental Plant Sciences at Colorado State University.
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Date Created: 09/29/16
9/26/16 Apples - There are a lot more apple cultivars in production than some other popular crops (like potatoes) - A lot of them originated in America - The cultivated apple (Malus x domestica) belongs to the family Rosaceae. It is a member of the subfamily Pomoideae. This subfamily also includes: ● Pyrus (pears) ● Cydonia (quince) Apple Economics - Most widely grown fruit in the world - Most apples require cross pollination ● Pollination service industry - need bee boxes in apple orchards ● Makes it really hard to have an apple monoculture Apple Biology - Each apple contains 5 ovaries or cells (the core) ● 1-2 seeds in each - The fleshy fruit (receptacle) grows around the core ● Accessory fruit - flesh is derived from the adjacent tissue and not the ovary - Seedling apples (small apples without very much flesh, not that good for eating) ● Extreme heterozygotes - new baby tree’s apples are radically different from parent’s trees apples ○ Apple seeds are spread very far by birds, so having extremely different offspring gives them a better chance of surviving in the environment they are dropped in - Domestica apples are propagated aesexually by grafting ● Tissues of one plant are encouraged to fuse with those of another ● Scion - part being grafted on, selected for stems, leaves, flowers, or fruit ● Stock or rootstock - plant that scion is grafted onto, selected for its roots ● Grafting - method of aesexual propagation ○ Tissues of one plant are encouraged to fuse with another ● Cleft grafting - most common type of grafting - Average apple tree has approximately 3,000 blossoms - Yield about 18,000 individual flowers, which would be way too many apples for a tree to support, so that is part of why the flowers abort if they are touched by their own pollen Apple Origins - The domestic apple is thought to have originated in the Caucasus Mountains of Central Asia - Apple is naturally adapted to temperate zones 30-45 degrees north and south of the equator Apples and Health - Boosts immune system - Low in calories - Prevent tooth decay - Reduce cholesterol - Lower respiratory problems - Prevent brain disease (phytonutrients) - Prevent heart disease (flavonoids) - Cancer prevention (phytonutrients and others) - Seeds contain high amounts of Vitamin B17 ● People thought that if you swallowed a few apple seeds the cyanide in them would kill you ● Nitrilosides - cyanide content bound to sugars, so they don’t release in your body readily ○ Would have to eat thousands of them to have a high enough level to be harmful ○ Some researchers used this chemical to make a drug to target cancer, but it was quack medicine - It’s true that apples have health benefits, but the slogan “An apple a day keeps the doctor away” was invented to try to get people to eat apples instead of drinking them because of prohibition Apples in America - No edible apples in America before arrival of europeans ● Seed planting did much better than “old world” cuttings ● Seed - sexual reproduction - new genotypes - new varieties ● Good varieties were then propagated aesexually (grafted) - John Chapman (1774-1845) ● Traveled the then frontier northwest territory of the US (western PA, ● Brought alcohol to the frontier ● Spread apple seeds and influenced settlement location ● Unwittingly drove forward the evolution of the apple - Apples on the frontier ● Desired for two reasons (Pollan) ○ Sugar/sweetness - prototype for all desire? ○ Alcohol ■ Apples planted by seed didn’t taste good to eat ■ Mostly used in hard cider ● Northwest territory and land grants ○ Required to plant at least 50 apple or pear trees ○ Encouraged homesteaders to “put down roots” ■ Suppress real estate speculation ■ Takes about 10 years for seeds to produce fruit ● John Chapman ○ Brought alcohol to the frontier ○ Influenced settlement locations ○ Unwittingly drove forward the evolution of the apple 9/28/16 History of Spice Obsession - Rule of the Pharaohs (1350-31 BC) ● Egyptians used a lot of spices - for cooking and for their mummies ○ Cumin, anise, marjoram, cassia, myrrh, frankincense, etc. ● Egyptian aristocrats burned cinnamon in their homes ○ Show their wealth - the smell of someone showed how powerful or poor they were ○ Hide stench from the crowds outside ● Doctors during plague wore masks that looked like scary beaks, were filled with spices/flowers to cover stench from bodies rotting ● Egyptians were trading with people from India (for spices, fibers, etc.) at least since 1500 BCE - Arabs created a monopoly on the spice trade moving toward Europe (around 950 AD) ● Came up with myths about where spices came from to keep Europeans in the dark ○ Pepper came from under waterfalls guarded by dragons - fire spiciness of pepper ○ Cinnamon came from mythical garden with giant cliffs with huge carnivorous birds living on them and their nests were made of cinnamon sticks - Spices initially only attainable by ruling class ● Emblems of power - the more sharply peppercorns seared guests’ mouths, the more they respected the hosts ● Presented as gifts of state ● Bequeathed as heirlooms ● Used as currency - Medieval Ruling Class ● Higher the rank of household, the greater its use of spices - Pepper was worth its weight in gold ● Used as currency ● Pepper was one of the first spices to be plagued by counterfeiting ○ Spice traders cut spices with dried juniper berries etc. ○ Grains of paradise Spice Obsession Theories 1. Using spice as a food preservative - Pepper along with salt was the main means of meat preservation - Other spices made spoiled meat edible again - Not much evidence to support this ● Salt worked fine to preserve things on its own ● Local spices and herbs were plentiful ● Those that could afford meat would eat it fresh 2. Spices used as medicine - Stimulate appetite/aid digestion - Philters (Philtres) ● Against plague - Aphrodisiacs - Love potions - Cures for impotence 3. The “Paradise” Theory - Medieval palate was dull/numb before spices ● The taste of spices was paradise - “Emissaries from a fabled world” ● Spices came from paradise - Some theological beliefs ● Garden of eden lay in Asia - source of spices? 4. Trade Route Inflation - Spices were moved from China and India to Europe ● Great silk road - the overland trade route stretched over 7,000 miles from Constantinople, Antioch and Tyre to China ● Each person that the spices are traded to along the silk road charges a little bit more because they have to pay mercenaries to protect them etc. The End of the Obsession - Spice prices declined in the 17th century ● A case of botanical ignorance? ○ Did not realize until the 18th century that trees and plants could be grown successfully in places other than where they were native ○ This theory doesn’t seem likely ● Markets were saturated ● More moderate use of spices ● New group of flavorings or “luxury foods” appeared ○ Chili’s, coffee, tea, sugar Black Pepper - The world’s most important spice - America is the biggest importer of black pepper - Piper nigrum - a woody, perennial, tropical climbing vine ● Perennial - lasts 3 seasons or more ● Annual - Completes its entire life cycle within the space of a season ● Heat ○ Cause by alkaloid irritants ○ Inner core ● Aroma ○ Comes from essential oils ● All pepper comes from same species, just depends on how they are processed ○ Green - before they are ripe, least hot ○ Black - also before they are ripe, dried in the sun which allows the alkaloid irritants to really develop and get hot, most hot ○ White - ripe red berries soaked in water to remove skin, leaving the hot white berries