Sorghum bicolor subsp. bicolor
Origin: Annville, Kentucky
Improvement status: Cultivar
Seeds per packet: ~50
Germination tested 12/2022: 92%
Life cycle: Annual
'Williams' is a fine heirloom syrup sorghum with easily hand-threshed red-brown grain. plants range from 6 to 9 feet tall, with 3-6 tillers (individual stalks), and some seed heads featuring black glumes (seed coverings), while most are red. This heterogeneity indicates a level of genetic diversity within this variety that qualifies it as a landrace. It was donated in 2015 to Seed Savers Exchange by Wayne Hayes of Annville, Kentucky. According to them, Wayne and his family have made syrup from this sorghum cane since 1948. Each plant produces 3-6 tillers.
These seeds were grown by EFN co-founder Nate Kleinman at the EFN flagship farm in Elmer, NJ.
GROWING TIPS: Direct-sow after danger of frost has passed. Plant seeds 1 inch deep, with plants at least 8-12 inches apart (distance inspires more tillering). Cane juice should be sweet and plentiful around the same time the seeds first begin to ripen, allowing for a dual-use crop.