Joseph E. Wing was one of the first persons to identify, promote, and grow alfalfa as a forage crop east of the Mississippi River. He developed his interest in alfalfa while in Utah, where he worked on a cattle ranch. When he returned, Wing began promoting the alfalfa culture, traveling among farmers in Champaign County and neighboring counties. Eventually, his travels, lectures, and study of soils, crops, and animals took him around the world. Wing also worked on the staff of the Breeders Gazette and authored many agricultural books and articles. In 1913, he hosted the first annual alfalfa picnic at his home, Woodland Farms. Over 3,500 people joined the crowd, including Ohio's governor, James M. Cox. For his contributions to the alfalfa culture, Wing was inducted into the Ohio State Agricultural Hall of Fame in the 1940s.