TT Thursday : the corn is growing???

TT Thursday : the corn is growing???

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Senryu and photo of my corn plants in 2017 before the ants ruined my fun

Well, Thunder Thighs Thursday is supposed to be about losing weight whether eating healthier or exercising or people have who have made contributions in either area. So this sorta falls under eating healthier. Part of eating healthier is eating fresh foods so that’s where gardening comes in

In 2017, I tried to grow red corn.  I checked the seeds out from the library.  The seeds were part of a native seed project and the red corn is native to the Southwest. Half the corn grew but before I could harvest them, massive amounts of ants crawled up the stems and helped themselves.  They were actually inside the husks too. Totally freaked me out. I screamed and left the corn there. That was the end of my farming career.

One baby corn husk lay in it’s sleeve on the ground there for two years.  I thought maybe it would go back to the earth, you know, decay or something.  But it just lay there like it was plastic. The other cobs disappeared.  Hmmm, maybe the ants carried them back to their home.  But this one baby corn cob, the corn husks are like waterproof or something.  It just lay there month after month after month.  I’d check to see if it was still there and yep, it was.   I never saw a dead plant not slowly disintergrate over two years especially in the Arizona heat. Everything curdles up and dries out. It was like a teflon corn cob. So weird.

So it’s April 2019. I did that garlic thing. Put the garlic in water so it put out little roots. Planted the garlic.  The garlic was growing.  Yay! (by the way, the garlic, all the different cloves have passed onto a better place.  They have not survived my tender care).

the red heritage corn is growing on the cob

The garlic made me wonder what else would grow.  This was before the garlic all died.  And there was that baby corn cob still laying on the ground after two years. So I picked up the baby corn cob, unpeeled all the leaves and interred it in the ground. The whole entire corn cob in one piece.  I didn’t expect it to grow. I mean seriously, it’s been laying there for two years.  Plus the ants ate it. So I didn’t bother to try to separate the kernels.  I just buried the cob as is.  I watered it as an experiment to see if it would grow like the garlic.  I didn’t think it would

I go to California expecting when I come back all my plants would be dead but luckily it actually rained in Arizona while I was gone and everything was still alive. Well, mostly.  The garlic dies.  The corn on the cob, however, grows.  Now I have a bunch of corn plants growing in the same spot! Now what?  I think I ought to separate them to give more room but it might be too late for that. What do you think? Any suggestions?

And how do I keep ants away from them without pesticides? To me, how can you eat healthier if you spray it? So I want to do something else to get rid of the ants or better yet encourage them to move out of my yard.  I’m all for live and let live but really want them to live someplace. Yep, I have a big case of NIMBY. Actually the corn is in my front yard as I’m afraid if I plant the corn in the backyard, I’ll forget to water it. If the corn doesn’t all die because they’re growing in the same space, I hope to actually eat one this year before the ants harvest it. Any ideas?


You can use the Amazon search bar to do any search at Amazon like I did for “heirloom seeds”. I like the results. One is a bag of 15,000 heirloom vegetable seeds. Even with a gardener like me I bet if I planted that many seeds, something would have to survive.

Amazon disclosure: “We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites.” This has no effect on your price. You pay the same price you would normally.

photograph by M. LaFreniere, all rights reserved.

8 Replies to “TT Thursday : the corn is growing???”

  1. Oh, that is so something I would do…just stick a whole ear of corn in the ground! I would leave it alone…I think the “stronger” plants will survive and a couple of the smaller ones will die off. Here in Tennessee it is snails that eat my squash and tomatoes. One year I had gorgeous healthy parsley and woke up one morning to GIANT caterpillars that ate every stalk and leaf in two days! The were gross and kind of scary!

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    1. omg! giant caterpillars. Sounds like a horror film but I totally get coming out and finding your plants denuded. That happened to my grape vines with caterpillars too. They haven’t givne any grapes yet and they came back later so there’s still hope. I hope your parsley grew back.

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  2. I’d leave the whole lot as is. It may seem close, but they pollinate by air so it should be fine. They tend to die when transplanted.
    Ants – clay powder, or any very fine powder around the ground and on the lower leaves will stop most of them, but the sweetness of the carbs in the cobs is irresistible, to humans and ants.
    I hope you get a few.
    And (I hope I’m telling it right) if when you get it and you worry about the carbs, there’s a way of cooking it that changes it to inulin resistant starch, and therefore, good.
    Cook as normal. Cool in fridge. Reheat after completely cooled. Eat.
    The process of heating, cooling, heating changes the properties of the starches. It (apparently) also works for pasta.

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    1. Really about the heating, cooling, heating? I never heard that. So leftover pasta is better than fresh? I can live with that. And thanks for your advice on the ants. Someone told me jello powder so maybe that the same reason as powder. I am assuming the nonsugar jello powder. I’ll also probably leave it. If they die more easily by being transplanted, I’m not a great gardener so I’d probably kill them

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    1. Someone suggested powder. Another person told me jello, nonsugar type, powder especially raspberry. I figure it won’t hurt to try it. I’ll let you know how it works out

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  3. That is so cool about the corn growing off the ear. That is too close together though so you need to pull some out, if you are careful you can plant them too just space them.I don’t know how to keep the ants away though-yuck.

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