Tag Archives: corn

If a squirrel can plant corn, I can too

A big bag of sun-burnt spinach and a bag of of  Chinese mustard greens in flower.

A big bag of sun-burnt spinach and a bag of of Chinese mustard greens in flower.

It’s finally shorts weather, and I went a little nuts today planting warm-weather seeds. In my herb garden, where a squirrel grew some corn last year, I planted to some corn. Also a random packet of sweet basil, which may or may not sprout.

In the pocket where I grow a tomato, I sowed edamame, and Cousa squash. Also a random packet of Dusty Miller, which is even less likely to come up.

At my community garden plot, I harvested another pound of Chinese mustard greens, and a couple pounds of spinach, slightly sun-burnt. And planted some green beans. By then, it was too hot to pick a random packet to sow, but the spinach was growing in all sorts of random spots, so that has to do.

Even for the squirrels it’s harvest time

Squirrel enjoying corn

The squirrels plant corn all over the place. You might think they’re just caching it, by hiding kernels in the ground, but in some spots it comes up spaced so evenly, it looks deliberately planted. And in this one spot, which doesn’t actually get all that much sun, somehow two years in a row now, the world’s smallest corn patch has sprouted, grown, flowered, and ripened. All so the squirrels can eat some more corn kernels and cache the rest.

Unbearable cuteness of corn

Mini corn

I did not grow this corn. Too cute. Neither did the squirrels grow this corn. Oh, no. This corn is so professionally grown, it formed as a slender extra ear clasped within the husks of a full-sized ear of corn we had for dinner. The kernels are so fine, so perfect, so fully formed, and yet too tiny for anything but the admiration of a Cheshire cat smile.

Hey squirrels, look at the corn you grew!

Squirrel-planted corn

The corn the squirrels accidentally planted actually set some kernels. Sure, it’s an unlovely gap-toothed grin of corn, but who cares what it looks like? It’s corn!

Now I’m tempted to try growing sweet corn on purpose next year. That is, I’m just tempted enough to think about why it wouldn’t work. Not enough space. Not enough sun. But so what? It would be corn!

The corn is so cute!

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Oh, oh, oh, oh,
The corn is so cute,
Oh, oh, oh, oh,
With its tassel just so,
Oh, oh, oh, oh,
And the grasshopper knows,
Oh, oh, oh, oh,
Where the tenderest shoot,
Oh, oh, oh, oh,
Will not be complete,
’til it offers itself,
To a hopper to eat.

The world’s smallest corn patch

Two whole corn seedlings

Two unusually tall grass plants have unveiled two flowering stalks. There’s even a couple of skinny ears forming at the bottoms. It’s corn! No way will anything come of this, but let’s see how far they get.

Thank you squirrels for leaving two kernels of corn uneaten.

Squirrel Corn

Half-eaten corn in squirrel feeder

The latest addition to the critter feeders is a hanger to put dried corncobs in. This is my most successful attempt so far to get the squirrels to leave the birds more sunflower seeds. In the mornings, I often see squirrels having a leisurely breakfast, but after I fill the bird feeders, they still go for the sunflower seeds. So I wasn’t sure that the squirrels really liked the corn all that much.

Curiously familiar sprouts

Meanwhile, the latest mystery sprouts look awfully familiar with their grassy blades, friendly even, but I couldn’t quite place what they were.

Then I spotted a squirrel caching corn. They like the corn after all! They do this with peanuts too. When they find something they especially love, they carry away tidbits, and hide them. It’s so funny to watch them scratch in the dirt with their tiny little hands. Then they put the kernel in. They even pat the dirt over it firmly. The idea is to have lots of little places they can come back to for a snack.

Or is it?

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