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Wes Perryman plants century-old wheat varieties

Moody, Texas, grower looks for an alternative to traditional crops to increase profit and lessen debt.

Shelley E. Huguley

May 21, 2019

16 Slides

Feeling frustrated with commodity markets for traditional crops, Moody, Texas, farmer Wes Perryman is looking for alternative markets. In 2018, he planted five varieties of heirloom wheat for a whiskey distillery, Still Austin. 

“This is my first year to grow heirloom wheat,” says the 36-year-old Perryman. “It’s a total experiment.”

See, U.S. distillery market growing, heirloom wheat looks promising

The heirloom seeds were originally acquired by Texas A&M AgriLife Research Assistant Research Scientist Russell Sutton, who got them from the National Small Grains Collection (NSGC) at Aberdeen, Idaho. The NSGC stores small grains germplasm collections, dating date back to 1897.

Perryman also grows cotton, corn and modern wheat varieties. He is a father of two and in his spare time, a Texas country singer, songwriter and electric guitar player. 

See, Moody, Texas, farmer plants wheat steeped in history

About the Author(s)

Shelley E. Huguley

Editor, Southwest Farm Press

Shelley Huguley has been involved in agriculture for the last 25 years. She began her career in agricultural communications at the Texas Forest Service West Texas Nursery in Lubbock, where she developed and produced the Windbreak Quarterly, a newspaper about windbreak trees and their benefit to wildlife, production agriculture and livestock operations. While with the Forest Service she also served as an information officer and team leader on fires during the 1998 fire season and later produced the Firebrands newsletter that was distributed quarterly throughout Texas to Volunteer Fire Departments. Her most personal involvement in agriculture also came in 1998, when she married the love of her life and cotton farmer Preston Huguley of Olton, Texas. As a farmwife, she knows first-hand the ups and downs of farming, the endless decisions made each season based on “if” it rains, “if” the drought continues, “if” the market holds. She is the bookkeeper for their family farming operation and cherishes moments on the farm such as taking harvest meals to the field or starting a sprinkler in the summer with the whole family lending a hand. Shelley has also freelanced for agricultural companies such as Olton CO-OP Gin, producing the newsletter Cotton Connections while also designing marketing materials to promote the gin. She has published articles in agricultural publications such as Southwest Farm Press while also volunteering her marketing and writing skills to non-profit organizations such as Refuge Services, an equine-assisted therapy group in Lubbock. She and her husband reside in Olton with their three children Breely, Brennon and HalleeKate.

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