Just a short drive west of Minneapolis you’ll find the Grimm Farm Historic Site, which is often called the birthplace of the Dairy Belt. Now part of a restoration project aimed at returning the site to its original state, the farm serves as an educational facility where students have the opportunity to experience Minnesota's agricultural heritage and explore the relationship between food, land and people.
Grimm Farm History
In 1859, immigrant German farmers Wendelin and Julianna Grimm purchased a plot of land in northern Carver County. Among the possessions they brought from their native land was a small wooden box containing the seeds of everlasting clover, which they planted on their farm.
For the next fifteen years Wendelin Grimm religiously collected and planted seeds from the plants that survived the harsh Minnesota winters. This selection practice, called seed saving, resulted in the first winter-hardy alfalfa in North America. Today, Grimm alfalfa is the source of all modern varieties of alfalfa grown on more the 25 million acres in the United States and valued at $10 billion annually.