So, the first peer reviewed article was published in a Finnish archaeological journal called Fennoscandia Archaeologica XXIX. The article will be later downloadable as a pdf from here. The printed version should be available now or soon.
The article is mostly based on my Master’s thesis, but there is also some additions. I tried to find all published Late Iron Age archaeobotanical studies and compile them into one place. These show clearly how barley cultivation has been predominant during that time. Rye, some naked wheats and oat were also cultivated, but in minor proportions and it’s not clear when actual rye cultivation began and whether is has been cultivated as a mixed crop or alone.
Happy new year 2013!
When I analysed archaeobotanical material for my Master’s thesis, I found some remains of bulbous oat grass (Arrhenatherum elatius var. bulbosum). The plant grows bulbs of 5-11 mm on the basal internodes, which means that there is onion-like swelling on the bottom of the stem. These have been found in charred form from various archaeological sites and both from graves and settlement sites. It has been discussed whether the plant has some ritual meaning, but there is some problems in this interpretation.
I was taking part of the IWGP (International Workgroup for Paleoethnobotany) in Wilhemshaven 2010. There Wiebke Kirleis asked for finds of bulbous oat grass and I told her about my findings and they were later mentioned in the publication made by her and others (Roehrs et. al 2012).
It was nice to be sited and the article gives a good overview of current finds of the plant. It was also interesting to get to know that the plant grows also as an arable weed.
Roehrs, H., Klooss, S. & Kirleis, W. 2012. Evaluat- ing prehistoric finds of Arrhenatherum elatius var. bulbosum in north-western and central Europe with an emphasis on the first Neolithic finds in Northern Germany. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences (Online first): 1–15. DOI 10.1007/s12520- 012-0109-0.