Good News/Bad News on Growing Corn

Operation Growing Corn 2015 is kind of a mixed bag at the moment.  On the one hand, the corn is starting to tassel at the top and drop its pollen.

growing corn

growing corn

I even have one stalk that has a little ear and corn silks forming.

growing corn

But, a raccoon or something else sinister seems to be systematically annihilating a single stalk of corn each day. It’s happening around the perimeter of the area where I’m growing corn, so while I do think the Three Sisters planting is helping deter the nasty creature/s, it’s certainly not been 100% effective. Bummer, I know, Hilda.

And other, far tinier tormentors, are harshing on my  mellow. Hundreds of greenish/blueish/icky-ish corn aphids have descended. Of course, I used my trusty aphid soap solution found here (it’s good for blight, aphids, rickets, scurvy, dandruff or just about anything else that ails ya).

Aphids may be disgusting and make me feel itchy when I see them, but most sources said that corn aphids in particular don’t usually pose any real threat to growing corn. Still, it felt good to put a dent in the dastardly population with my spray.

growing corn

See the big ant on the left? Just when you thought the whole thing couldn’t get any grosser, ants actually “milk” sticky sap from aphids, similar to the way humans milk cows. So, if you suddenly see a bunch of beefy ants hanging around your plants, there’s a good chance aphids are nearby.

growing corn

While I admit the picture above is super yuck, thanks to the the trail of crispy, black aphid bodies letting me know the soap spray is working, it’s not quite as grody as you might think. The white stuff is just flakes of dried soap, and the things on the leaves that look like grains of rice are just from the corn tassle.

So, anyway, that’s what’s happening here: growing corn, cursing the racoons, and killing aphids. How about you?

 

Advertisements