A week ago, I planted twelve cotton seeds, four each in three 20 ounce party cups filled with soil, as I started my quest to grow Alabama cotton in my Illinois garden. I wasn’t even sure if it was hybridized seed that would likely be sterile. So when I stood up from my desk last night and glanced over at the seedlings growing across the room under the plant lights, I was overjoyed to see four seedlings in each cup standing proudly above the soil.
Looking at them makes me want to try growing each of the main American agricultural crops at least once in my life. I know it sounds a bit foolish, but those twelve little plants make me feel a little more rooted in the history of this country and its agricultural heritage. Today, I’m feeling just a little more southern than the day before.