Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Stowell's Sweet Corn

Imagine corn seed spurring one to look more closely at who one considers a friend?

The original strain of Stowell's Sweet Corn was bred by Nathaniel Newman Stowell. Stowell was born May 16, 1793 in New Ipswich, Massachusetts. After years of refining the strain, Nathaniel sold two ears of seed for $4.00 to a friend who agreed to use it only for his private use. His "friend" then turned around and sold the seed for $20,000 and it was introduced to the seed trade in 1848. Could this friend not have split the profit? Or at the very least, paid him back the $4.00?

In any case, after 151 years, his variety is still the leading white variety for home gardens and market growers. Ears grow 8-9" long and have 14-20 rows of kernels, 1-2 ears per stalk, and will be yours to eat in just 80-100 days should you plant them in your own garden. If you would like to purchase seed, it is available at Seed Savers Exchange.

Otherwise, please be on the lookout for Stowell's Sweet Corn at farmers markets and restaurants around Rhode Island at harvest time.

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