'Bolosso Landrace' Teff

'Bolosso Landrace' Teff

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Eragrostis tef

Origin: Bolosso, Ethiopia

Improvement status: Landrace

Seeds per packet: ~300

Germination tested 11/2023: 98%

Life cycle: Annual

Teff is a vitally important staple grain in Ethiopia and some neighboring countries. The well-known staple bread called injera is made from fermented teff flour. While it is a very small grain, plants produce so many seeds that it's productive enough to be increasing in popularity around the world. 'Bolosso' is a lovely landrace teff from the town of Bolosso, located in the red-soil region of the country's southwest. With its mix of white and brown seeds, 'Bolosso' is quite perfect for injera bread (many injera recipes call for a mix of white and brown seeds, likely an attempt to replicate just this sort of landrace with the standardized varieties currently most available in commerce).

We got seeds for this variety from the USDA's National Plant Germplasm Systems, and this batch was grown for us by our friend Jen Williams of Wild Dreams Farm on Vashon Island, Washington.

GROWING TIPS: Teff can be direct-seeded easily, but we recommend starting it inside and planting plugs (individual cells of a flat, in this case with between one and twenty seedlings) about a foot apart in rows. Teff has been known to lodge (fall over), so keeping plants that close together can help them stay upright. It's time to harvest when the plants begin to turn straw-colored. Seeds can be threshed from the chaff by hands or feet or mechanical means (oxen walking in a circle over and over a large pile of harvested teff is a traditional method in Ethiopia). Winnow to further clean.