Results of Our Seed Saver's Blue Jade Corn and Strawberry Popcorn

By JULIE - 9:26:00 AM

This is our first year growing corn.  We wanted to make sure we grew a heirloom seed and not GMO so we picked blue jade corn and strawberry popcorn from the seed saver's exchange.  Blue Jade is a compact (can even be grown in containers) fast growing variety that sounds perfect for an urban garden in MN.  Since we need warm weather crops here in zone 4 to grow as fast as possible! 
The Results of Blue Jade
this is exactly how I found the eaten cobs
Since it's our first time growing corn we didn't know when to pick it and quite frankly I forgot about the corn since I've been busy harvesting everything in the garden except soybeans, carrots, and asparagus.  Seems like I should have kept closer tabs on it.  I noticed yesterday that one of our corn plants was actually all brown and dead looking, I figured it must be safe to pick it and check it out.  It was so cute!  it was about 3 inches long and perfect.....except I found out it was dried out.  Since it seems I waited to long to pick them I checked out the rest of our crop only to find two half eaten cobs.  I believe they were birds and what happened is the dead corn silks (brown like pictured)  peeled back on their own or maybe the birds did it?  I'm  not sure what else could have ate them because we half the entire square fenced in by chicken wire and they were high up on the corn plant.  What do you think corn detectives out there?  Any ideas for next year?  Should we put netting over it or just pick it as early as we can next year?

our corn harvest minus one ear that was harvested already
Our Harvest of 12 plants were only a few small ears, perhaps they didn't get enough nutrition.  Corn is suppose to be heavy feeders.  I plan to add extra compost and plant 1 per square foot next year instead of 2 per square that I did this year.  I think that will help. We only produced 6 ears, two of which I might have picked to early since they were green and little.  I am leaving the plants in and hoping they will still produce.  I figure it's worth a shot.

Results of our Strawberry Popcorn
our strawberry popcorn
I think the strawberry popcorn is maturing later than the blue jade so I am waiting to harvest them, except I had to try one at least.  They look good!  Perfect little (about 3 inches) cobs!  They are taller than the blue jade and seem to be producing fuller corn cobs and more per plant.  They got so huge!  It was less strawberry looking (it is suppose to be pink)  just the tips were pink, maybe it's not done growing yet? Even if not  that's okay it's suppose to pop white anyway.  This is a fun one to show kids.  I love telling kids I 'm growing popcorn.  
Our strawberry popcorn

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