Sunday, August 7, 2016

corn..maize...what's the difference...

errands took me past the corn field behind the big box stores today and the industrial corn has sprouted least in some cases...i am finding about equal numbers of plants with one or two ears ( slightly biased towards two ) when the plants are spaced four inches or better apart ( first three photos )...further along the rows however there are still those plants that are within two inches of one another and the production drops dramatically when they are...the fourth photo shows two close plants and they have one stunted ear between them...look dead center in the next two photos and you will see closely placed plants with no ears at all...there seems to be a minimum space requirement after all and i have to wonder if this was purposeful or if the planter was malfunctioning...moving back to my back yard, i have eight bear paw maize plants spaced about a foot apart...some have one ear...or two..or three ( photos nine,ten, and eleven )...but the one in the bottom three photos has five growing out of the stem on one side...another around the other...and ( admittedly ) a runt ear growing out of a ears on one plant and a total of eighteen for the lot...i am thinking genetics drive space needs and even though inputs can override genetics to a degree there are still limits to how close dense yellow #2 can grow and flourish...i will keep it out of my yard ( licensing would prohibit that anyway...don't need monsanto knocking on the door ) and stick with heirloom varieties...perhaps some hopi blue next year.

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