Corn, Maiz Concho

Hobbs & Meyer Farm

$ 4.50

Size

Maiz Concho Flint (110-120 days)

Zea mays

We are grateful to share this beautiful heirloom from a nice crop grown by Dan Hobbs at Pueblo Seed in Colorado. Corn is strongly adapted to latitude, so when we grew this SW corn in Oregon it grew very tall (10-12’) and produced ears late. So, unless you are closer to 35 degrees Latitude, then allow for a very long season for this strain to mature. Maize de Concho is included in the Slow Food Ark of Taste collection because it has been used for preparing Chicos, a method of cooking involving harvest- ing at the green (milk) stage and prepared via an ancient technique through roasting in an earthen oven called an “Horno”. Chicos are still made by residents of the Upper Rio Grande and San Luis Valley where there is a revival of this endangered regional food in Acequia communities. This is an ancient flint type of corn that can periodically revert back to ancestral phenotypes indicative of its wild parentage from Teosinte. Ears are 9-14” long with pale, shell-white kernels. Can also be used for pozole, hominy, grits and polenta. HMF

Packet: One Ounce (≈ 110 seeds) 

Quarter pound

Half Pound

CORN - Zea mays

Growing Tips:  Plant corn by direct seeding 1-2” deep after soil has warmed to at least 70° (Triple Play, Painted Hills Sweet & Hooker’s are specifically adapted to cool soil planting so can be planted earlier in the season).  You can also transplant corn for earlier crops, but you have to baby them a bit. 

Plant Spacing:  Seed 6-10 per foot and thin to 1 plant per 8-12”, rows should be 24-36” apart.  Hill method: Plant 5-10 seeds 1-2” deep in a mound, which should be 4-5 feet apart.  Grow squash in-between and plant pole beans in mound once corn has emerged.  Works better with flour corn and popcorn as it becomes somewhat jungle-like to harvest sweet corn with this method.

Pests: Protect young seedlings from bird predation with floating row covers.  A common novice gardener problem is to assume that their corn didn’t come up; when in actuality birds such as jays, robins and crows were digging and pulling up the young sprouts.  Scarecrows, floating eye balloons and reflective tape are somewhat effective.  Dogs are good, too.  Corn earworms (which are actually the caterpillar stage of a moth) can be controlled by spraying Bt. (Dipel™ is a brand name of OMRI certified organic control).  Or just bear with their minor inconvenience by chopping the tips off of infected ears.

Harvest:  Sweet corn when it’s in the “milk” stage, which you can determine by finding an ear whose silks have dried, gently peeling back some leaves while the ear is still on the plant, then nicking a kernel and looking for milky liquid to ooze out.  Clear fluid indicates that it is too early, no liquid – you’re too late, save for seed or flour corn.  Raccoons can devastate a corn crop if they find it appealing.  Some folks put a battery powered radio in their patch to provide a menacing noise deterrent to keep coons at bay.

Diseases:  We have not experienced any significant diseases here in Oregon, but my counsel would be ample fertility from well-matured compost and foliar sprays of compost tea, fish emulsion and kelp when plants are young if you do experience yellowing or die back.

Seed Specs:  Sweet: 125-225 seeds per/oz.; Popcorn: 250-300 seeds/oz.

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