Timopheevii wheat is also known as Zanduri Wheat. It was domesticated from a wild grass (T. araticum) found in the Caucasus Mountain regions. This ancient grain is known for its exceptional flavor and resistance to disease. Bread baked using this grain was called the King’s Bread. Timopheevii is a hulled wheat similar to Einkorn and Emmer.
Thanks to its unique properties, Zanduri is the most important wheat. Of its unique properties, mention should be made of Zanduri’s absolute immunity to both – diseases and pests. Wheat is known to be prone to numerous diseases and pest. Some fungus diseases (rusts, smut, powdery mildew, etc.) may lead to a 25-30% loss of the yield. After Zanduri, wheat had become known to the general public not only in Georgia but abroad as well (in 1932, when Zhukovskyi described and classified the wheat as Triticum timopheevii), the intensive utilization of the wheat as germplasm began. The initial information about Zanduri comes from Güldenstädt (1771-1773), then
Georgi (1795-1800). They described Zanduri wheat as the cultivated einkorn – T. monococcum, which can be explained by the fact that this very variety predominated in Zanduri sowings. Later, when as a result of divergence, the share of T. timopheevii in the ceonosis had increased, arose a need to define their name. Locals used to name T. monococcum and T. timopheevii according to their spike shape – Gvatsa Zanduri and Chelta Zanduri respectively, while the cenosis retained its common name Zanduri; later (1958), a new (third) variety – T.
zhukovskyi Men. & Er., was added to the ceonosis. In 1948, Menabde delineated the exact distribution
area of this wheat, which looks as follows: the northern boundary of distribution goes along the
Tsageri-Orbeli-Lailashi-Patara Oni line; the eastern boundary is Kvanchkara-Dghnori; the western –
Tamakoni-Gordi-Mekhena-Dghnori. These sites are known as the wheat’s exclusive distribution area.
New varieties derived in crosses with the wheat in Australia, and America, such as Konly, Timsten,
Timgalen, Timvera, Gabo, Bledzoe, Georgia 1123, etc., share Zanduri wheat’s disease immunity traits.
These varieties are also immunity donors and gave rise to numerous other varieties.
Read more about ancient wheat’s found near the Caucasus Mountain Range from Eli Rogosa at GrowSeed.org
Descriptions and Photos courtesy of John Sherck and Eli Rogosa
John Sherck, Bristol, IN
My original seed stock came from the USDA. The plants reached a height of 42″ and had many grain bearing tillers (18 – 25). The plants also have very strong stalks and showed no signs of lodging. I noticed that after numerous rains, from flowering till harvest, the grain heads maintained beautiful color with no blemishes. After threshing, I was also impressed with the plumpness and quality of the seed. Timopheevii is well suited to Fall planting here in zone 5.