Wednesday, August 14, 2013

The Corn Patch

We wanted to try an open pollinated sweet corn this year. Normally we plant a hybrid called Kandy but we also wanted to try some open pollinated ones to see if we could find one that we liked as well. So we bought an heirloom variety called Golden Bantam.  

The corn was filled out to the end and we were biding our time and waiting on the kernels to size up. O Wise One is setting coon traps every night!

Golden Bantam an open pollinated heirloom.

Kandy a yellow hybrid super sweet. Notice the red coloring on the tassels of the hybrid. We have both planted well away from one another to prevent cross pollination. Allowing plenty of time between plantings as well so that they did not tassel and pollinate at the same time.  

Tuesday we picked our first ears of the Golden Bantam.

And golden it is. We saw an occasional shoepeg ear and an occasional bicolor ear. It was exactly what we wanted a plain yellow corn. Not cloyingly sweet like some of the supersweet hybrids but more like the corn we grew up with. We find that although the supersweet corn can be great for corn on the cob it can hide that corn taste. We want this to not only eat but to use in taco soup and corn chowder, corn casserole and other recipes through the year. 

The other thing we noticed is that there were maybe 4 corn worms in the whole batch so it seems our putting the oil on the silks really worked again this year. We were worried because our neighbor was complaining about his being really wormy. ( You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink!) 

Once shucked this corn waited patiently on the counter while O Wise one cranked up the fish burner and boiled a big pan of water then blanched it on the porch. It was cooled in tubs of ice water.

It's a pretty simple process. Just cut the kernels of corn off the cob. 

I am proud to report that my radio in the garden under that tub, 2 large dogs running free and coon traps all worked to get us to this point with little to no coon damage. (They're waiting on the super sweet! )

We did however take one prisoner of war!

We have yet to bag our corn but will have to get back to you with a final tally. 

Blessings from The Holler

The Canned Quilter


  1. I missed your post about oiling the silks, could you let me know what date you posted it, or just tell me what kind of oil, and when you did it. thanks a bunch, I wish I had some of that corn right now!

    1. Annie just take mineral oil/veg oil/olive oil and an eyedropper and put a couple drops right at the end of the ear where the silks come out. I mix my oil with a little water and even put in a sprayer works. The moth lays her eggs in that silk and then the eggs hatch and the worm works it's way into your corn. The oil effectively smothers the eggs and stops that. Be careful because oil on leaves in bright sunlight equals sunscald damage. Make sure you just get it on the end of the ear where the silks come out.

  2. Beautiful corn!! I remember when that Kandy Corn came out.. I used to dream about eating it.. haha..

    Check out this video on You Tube about how to strip your corn cobs & FAST.. Super cool. If I ever had any amount to do, I'd do something like this.. Maybe find a way to make the Corn Cutter stationary somehow to lend support..

    Also, many years ago, an old timer at my community garden told me to sprinkle baby powder at the base of the corn plants & up to at least the first set or two of leaves to beat those coons at their corny games. They dont like getting the powder on their paws and they leave your corn alone.. It worked several times I used it & all my garden neighbors around me wanted to know why their corn was decimated & mine & his werent. I've often wondered if flour would work as well.. I dont know why not. Anyways.. maybe you could use it on the perimeters of the corn and see if it works for you.. Its a thought anyways. :)

    1. Baby powder huh! I am always looking for ways to battle those silly coons : )

  3. How can you determine when is the right time to pick perfectly timed corn? Last year I had a great corn crop but I couldn't help feel it was a bit too mature.

    Also- about those watermelons- how do you tell when THEY are ready inside?

    1. Rebecca we have grown Kandy variety corn for many years and know that on that particular variety when the silks turn brown the corn inside is ready. On the new (to us) Golden Bantam we found that the silks did not turn brown when ready and we had to feel the actual ear to try to figure if it was filled out. On watermelons we pick when the stem starts to shrivel and turn brown or dry out. Cantaloupe we pick by smell. My father always thumped his watermelons to tell if they are ripe. I think once you grow a variety for awhile you develop a sense about when to pick them.

    2. Thank you! That is very helpful!

  4. A friend of mine just recently heard that if you plant cucumbers around the corn the racoons won't go near it. They hate cucumbers. She tried it this year and it worked! She did it in an experiment type situation. The corn that had no cucumbers were gotten by the coons! The stuff with cucumbers stayed safe! She also heard from an old timer that lives by her and he said he remembered his mom or grandma growing it that way too. I'm definitely trying it next year! Nothing gained if I don't try right?

    1. Wow my cucumbers are beside my corn : ) Who new ! It just worked out that way....


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