Corn hobby

Glass Gem corn

My pretty corn.

pretty corn

Glass Gem corn is a variety of popcorn, which is a type of flint corn aka Indian corn, decorative corn.

The story of Glass Gem corn

Its origin traces back to Carl Barnes, a part-Cherokee farmer living in Oklahoma. Barnes had an uncanny knack for corn breeding. More specifically, he excelled at selecting and saving seed from those cobs that exhibited vivid, translucent colors.

indian corn

Backyard amethysts.

I have a Flickr photo album of corn pictures HERE.

I haven’t had much success popping it, but probably because for fun I tossed a whole ear in the microwave last year to see what would happen. Just some mini-explosions of white right on the cob which were hard to pick off. Maybe this year I will thoroughly dry some ears, then pick off the kernels and try to pop it right.

It can also be dried and ground into corn flour for hominy, polenta, tortillas. They say.

gem

More knowin’… Business Insider: The Story Behind Glass Gem Corn

Ox Tamers

Fryeburg Fair, Maine, on Monday…

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The Ox-Tamer
By Walt Whitman

In a far-away northern county in the placid pastoral region,
Lives my farmer friend, the theme of my recitative, a famous tamer of oxen,
There they bring him the three-year-olds and the four-year-olds to break them,
He will take the wildest steer in the world and break him and tame him,
He will go fearless without any whip where the young bullock chafes up and down the yard,
The bullock’s head tosses restless high in the air with raging eyes,
Yet see you! how soon his rage subsides–how soon this tamer tames him;
See you! on the farms hereabout a hundred oxen young and old,
and he is the man who has tamed them,
They all know him, all are affectionate to him;
See you! some are such beautiful animals, so lofty looking;
Some are buff-color’d, some mottled, one has a white line running along his back, some are brindled,
Some have wide flaring horns (a good sign)–see you! the bright hides,
See, the two with stars on their foreheads–see, the round bodies and broad backs,
How straight and square they stand on their legs–what fine sagacious eyes!
How straight they watch their tamer–they wish him near them–how they turn to look after him!
What yearning expression! how uneasy they are when he moves away from them;
Now I marvel what it can be he appears to them, (books, politics, poems, depart–all else departs,)
I confess I envy only his fascination–my silent, illiterate friend,
Whom a hundred oxen love there in his life on farms,
In the northern county far, in the placid pastoral region.

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Good-bye to another September

sunflyer

Good-bye, September.

More than once this summer (and as early as late July) I have looked at our sprawling messy fecund garden, with splitting tomatoes, overgrown squash, greens going from tender to chewy, and wished all that growing and producing was over and I could stare forlornly at a dead winter garden and dream and plan a perfect future summer garden.

vintage farm mags

A photo from Rochester Fair.

Winter is coming, with its long nights. Sleep and dream of clean coops and fat hens, red orbs of tomatoes, crops in straight lines, little wet lambs and fat white woolly sheep, you successful farmer.

tunis sheep

I like this breed, ID’ed at Rochester Fair: Tunis sheep.

Bedtime story: The Tale of the Tunis – Sheep Once Rare Now in Demand.

…those beautiful copper red-faced, red legged, creamy wool creatures with pendulous ears in our barn who gave new meaning to good mothering and docile temperaments…