Nebraska Seed was purchased by John Nicolson of Shenandoah, Iowa, in the 1920’s. Nicolson had visions of becoming a leading international seed company and led Nebraska Seed to be a pioneer in hybrid corn seed as well as popcorn, alfalfas and a wide range of turf and field grass seeds. The company also controlled Henry Field Nurseries.
Nicolson’s grand vision was not a financial success, however, and Nebraska Seed had reduced its scope of operations at the time of his death in 1957. Shortly thereafter Arthur Berry, along with partners William and James Fitzgerald, purchased the turf and field seed operations of Nebraska Seed and renamed the company United Seeds.
United Seeds was to dramatically change again in the next decades. Through the 1950s and 1960s United Seeds remained one of the largest harvesters and sellers Kentucky bluegrass, which grew wild. The bluegrass harvest would begin in southern Missouri and proceed north until the roads ended in Canada. Production of top quality seed was soon to shift, however, to the ideal climate of the Pacific Northwest. Soon thereafter the production of nationally promoted (proprietary) varieties began.