An international team that includes a University of Arizona researcher has delved into the DNA of the chile and found its Eden: a valley in east-central Mexico where indigenous farmers domesticated the fiery pepper more than 6,500 years ago.
The team, using linguistic and ecological evidence as well as archaeological and genetic data, traced the ancestry…
The domesticated chili pepper—the world’s most widely grown spice crop—got its start in central-east Mexico, report researchers.
Results from the four-pronged investigation—based on linguistic and ecological evidence as well as the more traditional archaeological and genetic data—suggest a regional, rather than a geographically specific, birthplace for the domesticated chili pepper.
With future generations in mind, may my family and friends never leave the land we steward poorer, nor its water scarcer than conditions were before we acquired responsibility for their care.
May we keep land meant to be farmed from being de-veloped, and re-envelope it with people dedicated to keep its inherent productivity in tact into perpetuity.
The oases of the Baja California peninsula, Mexico, harbor farming systems with crops first introduced by Jesuit missionaries during their political, economic, and ecclesiastical dominance from 1697–1768. The oases represent geographies of historic dissemination and hold assemblages of heirloom perennial crop species with origins in six of seven continents.
The first Jesuit missionaries to the peninsula documented their agricultural introductions in detail, and these historic documents along with records from subsequent Franciscan and Dominican missionaries provide a benchmark by which to measure the persistence and/or loss of perennial crop species.