The Field’s Edge Research Farm
Alex Wenger is a seed grower, farmer, and plant-breeder whose passion is sustainability through food, plants, and agriculture. Beginning in 2010 Alex began converting his family's land into a “research farm” with more than seven acres growing projects today. His many research activities are long-term, such as breeding disease-resistant apple varieties through crosses with wild apples from central Asia. Alex also researches and documents local ethnobotanical traditions, including the integration of wild foods into farming systems. He raises specialty grains and produce organically for chefs, and has been using selective breeding to adapt varieties such as the ‘Spin Rosso della Valsugana’ corn landrace to the Mid-Atlantic.
Recently Alex has been working with a food historian to stabilize and revive regional crop landraces. His overarching interested is to research, develop, and promote sustainable systems of food production. These interests led Alex to explore the potential of Apios americana as a sustainable food crop. In 2011, he began a collaboration with researchers Dr. William Blackmon and Dr. Steven Cannon to develop Apios as a future food.