Spencer Acres: Research Pod (2020-Present)
Beginning with the Covid 19 Lockdown the first "official" Wild Seed Field Museum Research Pod was launched at Spencer Acres, the Hemeyer family farm in Ralls Co, Missouri. The farm has been in the family for 4 generations and is mixed-use with 200 acres of farmland, extensive gardens, a prairie restoration project, and an orchard. Land includes a creek, watershed, deciduous forest, several rare plants and a few old-growth trees. The project began with a focus on questions pertaining to the confluence of anthropocentric (human) and ecocentric (deep ecology) ideals- what purpose does the farm currently serve for family, wildlife, and biodiversity? In what ways can the land be useful to the community at large, presently or in the future? How can land practices be improved while working with a variety of ideas pertaining to land use and conservation?
Results of inquiry include:
- 300+ plants logged into iNaturalist for public reference, many with medicinal and edible properties.
- Planting 100+ native trees including Bald Cypress, Red Bud, Smooth Sumac, and Black Oak.
- Planting 80+ varieties of perirenal native wildflowers, dye plants, fibers, and medicinal herbs.
- Launching of the Wild Seed Youtube Channel featuring a segment on Spencer Acres.
- A series of 'Small Batch' items created from foraged and grown plants on the farm for the larger community. Sold by donation.
- Investigation for the potential site for the Wild Seed Forest Camp, a nomadic educational and inquiry space created for weekend workshops.
Spring 2020 Menu