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Planting by Degrees

May 21, 2012

Looking back in my garden notes for planting dates tells me, yes, I have planted some warm weather crops in mid-May, but it’s been awful hard to forget the sting of the last few cold, wet springs.  Two years ago, I wasn’t planting until late June!  But gardeners aren’t known as gamblers for no reason.

Taking a gamble isn’t too hard if you have plenty of seed, and a deadline (Jane’s freshening) looming before you.  I think I will be pretty busy and occupied when Jane has her calf, so anything I can get planted now will be a boon.  For sure, not planting only guarantees that I will be planting at a later date and that gives me fewer options.

Abenaki Calais Flint – 8 row.

This flint corn comes in yellow, orange and a deep red.  Since it is thought that the higher anthocyanin content in the red pigmented corn helps ward off fungus, therefore allowing better emergence in cooler soils, I am selecting from my largest red and orange ears.  I also want to keep the original eight row version, so I selected only the ears that meet that criteria.

I also want to grow sweet corn this year, so a staggered planting is necessary to avoid cross contamination of my flint corn.  It’s way too cold for planting out sweet corn, so getting my more cold tolerant flint corn a head start, gives me a chance to test for true vigor in cooler temperatures that are so common here in late May and early June.

Besides all Jane’s roots being planted, here is the list of what got planted in the garden between other projects this past weekend:

Potatoes – Purple Viking, Romanze
Stuttgarter Onion (sets)
Sweet Meat Winter Squash (direct seed)
Styrian Naked Seed Pumpkin (direct seed)
National Pickling Cucumber (direct seed)
Lemon Cucumber (direct seed)
Abenaki Calais Flint Corn (direct seed)
Brilliant Celeriac (transplant)

Peppers (transplant)
Sage (transplant)
Marjoram (trantsplant)
Thyme (transplant)
Basil (transplant)
More flats of lettuce, bok choy, cabbage, brussels sprouts, romanesco, cauliflower, broccoli, melons and kale for planting out later.

It sounds like a lot when I list it all out like that, but I have a lot more to plant in the coming months.  Phew, thank heavens for a rainy day to water in my seeds and let me get caught up. 😉

8 Comments leave one →
  1. Elizabeth permalink
    May 21, 2012 2:56 pm

    Dear Matron,
    Do you use your flint corn for animal feed or grinding for corn meal?

    • May 21, 2012 3:38 pm

      Elizabeth, corn meal for us…corn is a very minor crop here. I wouldn’t grow it for stock unless I was using for chop.

  2. Rich permalink
    May 21, 2012 3:36 pm

    I’ve planted some red and blue corn like that in the past because I like the way it looks and it’s an interesting plant, but what can you do with it? Grind it into corn meal?

    • May 21, 2012 3:39 pm

      Rich, it makes a real good corn meal for bread or polenta if you’re so inclined to eat it that way. 🙂

  3. May 21, 2012 4:14 pm

    I was going to ask the same question, as wikipedia was not very helpful on the topic of flint corn! I hope you will post more one day about how you grind it and what you use it for, I don’t know anything about it and it looks interesting, although I have had a lot of trouble growing decent corn so far (got to keep practicing:))

  4. May 21, 2012 7:09 pm

    Thanks for all the information, Matron! :o)

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