8a.2 Fort Ancient Farming
Once the fields were cleared by burning the brush and girdling the larger trees, the Fort Ancient women probably planted corn seeds in small hills of soil. They began to grow beans around A.D. 1300. They may have planted the beans with the corn, allowing the bean vines to climb the corn stalks. Most likely, squash and pumpkin plants were raised around the edges of the fields. The charred corn and beans on display are from actual Fort Ancient sites. The whole corn, beans, and gourds, grown by the Dayton Museum of Natural History, are part of a selective breeding program to reproduce prehistoric plant species.