RicelandMeadows


Corn Crop Seed for 2022 , Saved!

November 12, 2021

One of the things that I wrap up before the bad weather comes, is to set my next year’s seed corn in a cool dry place. It will dry down more. Then one winter day I will shell the ends off of the ears, followed by shelling the entire ear. The ends will go for animal feed. The rest of the ear will be shelled into a paper sack and kept until spring. This keeps the seed viable until it can be planted next year.

I like the color that comes naturally in this corn. It makes hand husking fun. I save seed from the biggest ears, picked from stalks that are standing up well. Many ears are over a foot long. I saved the seed that grew this corn last year. As I select the corn for seed, my crop follows that direction. There are about 50% yellow ears and 50% of ears of color. The animals don’t care, they eat it all. I just like to make picking fun.

I describe shelling the ends of the ears off. This is just so that the seed planted is from the “flats” they go through the seed plates easier and are more uniform size. I don’t have to worry about this anymore as I now have a plateless planter. It allows me to plant seeds of all different sizes including the small round seeds found at the ends of the ears. So, I guess its just an old habit slow to die for me. If folks are planting using a planter with seed plates, they may want to stick with the way I describe to get the more uniform flat seeds from the middle part of the ear. The plants themselves don’t care. The seed will all sprout and grow, producing a regular looking ear, no matter if it was a flat seed or a round seed that was planted.

I keep a close eye on these saved cobs of corn. I don’t want mice or birds getting to them. I think it could be said that I almost baby them. I check on them often and protect them. Once the seed has been removed from the cob and stored in a paper bag, I guard that pretty close too. This seed will continue to adapt to our climate. It will grow much in the way that I select the seed. Large ears from stalks that stand up and color just to make this farmer smile.

The big ears will continue to get larger. The stalks will have to get a little bigger or stronger to hold the large ears. It is a sort of circle. If the big ears have fallen over, even though they are large, they are no good for seed, because the stalk couldn’t hold them up. Like livestock, seed must be culled hard as you save only the best. A good farmer will have to make some tough choices at times. His culls will be better stock than other guys even possess. As tough as it is, that is a very good problem to have

This was a sunrise the other morning. It tells me that foul weather is coming. I know that a storm or at least more rain is headed our way, but it sure is a pretty way to let me know. Before the weather turns rough, I hope to have much of the outside work completed. The corn crop all harvested, seed saved and set aside, now its on the the last of the firewood needing to be gathered. The small farm can present plenty to do, but with amazing sunrises and sunsets to start and end the days, its fine with me.



Corn 2018
May 27, 2018, 9:48 am
Filed under: May 2018 | Tags: , , ,

corn2018

May 27, 2018

With overcast skies looming and a few scattered raindrops falling, I managed to get my 2018 corn field planted. It was a mad dash. The field was still a bit too wet in places, but I planted anyway. The newly reconditioned corn planter worked wonderfully. I wasn’t able to use the horses, but the corn is in and the animals will thank me later this year.

My corn planter has been fitted with “plateless” seed boxes. This will allow me to plant seeds of any size, one at a time, in any spacing that I decide. It will be great for open pollenated  varieties. I will plant with the horses and powercart next year. I will have more time for planning and preparation without the undertow of an off farm job.

I backed The corn planter into the shed, shut the tractor down and walked to the house. As I was walking, the rain started falling. Whew, not enough to soak us, but just enough to delay any field work…thank God, I got the field planted.

Yesterday morning, I cleaned up a fallen tree in one of my neighbor’s yards. I was hustling around trying to finish the work, knowing that I needed to be working in the field. I saw my elderly neighbor wave from his window and I realized that I needed to do the tree. I think I may have been blessed for my efforts, because it rained all around me as I fitted and planted. I kept going and it all turned out perfect!