Westminster in Carroll County, Maryland — The American Northeast (Mid-Atlantic)
Wormseed Oil Growing & Harvesting
In early spring, wormseed plants were grown with some of the previous year's seeds in newly cleared ground. The six to eight inch tall plants were then transplanted to the field in June. Plants were cultivated until mature for harvesting in September with distillation occurring in October and November. Wormseed had to be sown, planted, cultivated and harvested by hand to ensure the seed pots remained attached. The plants were left to dry in the field for seven to ten days. Growing and harvesting the plant was labor intensive and time consuming.
After the curing process, plants were hand-loaded onto wagons in late evening or early morning while dew was still on the plants. This kept more of the valuable seeds intact. Fully loaded wagons or trucks then went to local wormseed oil distilleries so that processing could begin.
After the oil was steam extracted, the plants would be used for cattle feed or returned to the field as fertilizer. No animal would eat the plant before the oil was removed, but some found it palatable afterward. Reincorporating the plant as organic fertilizer was important as the crop depleted the
Erected by Carroll County Farm Museum.
Topics. This historical marker is listed in this topic list: Agriculture.
Location. 39° 33.498′ N, 76° 59.596′ W. Marker is in Westminster, Maryland, in Carroll County. Marker is on Farm Museum Road, 0.2 miles south of South Center Street, on the left when traveling south. Touch for map. Marker is at or near this postal address: 500 S Center St, Westminster MD 21157, United States of America. Touch for directions.
Other nearby markers. At least 8 other markers are within walking distance of this marker. 1930s Farm F12 Tractor (here, next to this marker); Edwin E. Magin (a few steps from this marker); In Honor of the Day Family (a few steps from this marker); Wormseed Oil History (a few steps from this marker); Wormseed Oil Distillation (a few steps from this marker); Carroll County Almshouse and Farm (about 400 feet away, measured in a direct line); Basket Sleigh (about 600 feet away); The Smokehouse (about 700 feet away). Touch for a list and map of all markers in Westminster.
Credits. This page was last revised on December 18, 2021. It was originally submitted on December 18, 2021, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia. This page has been viewed 63 times since then and 3 times this year. Photos: 1, 2. submitted on December 18, 2021, by Devry Becker Jones of Washington, District of Columbia.