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Cherokee White Flour Corn: Planting & Harvest
Help preserve this Native American heritage maize crop.
A soft flour corn for baking and cooking.

Cherokee White Flour Corn (Zea Mays var. amylacea)

This variety does well even if you only plant 1/10 or 1/4 of an acre. (An acre is 43,560 square feet. A 1/10 acre is 4,356 square feet.)

It is good to plant Cherokee Flour Corn at 14,000 seeds or less per acre.

Seeds Per Acre

For 9,680 seeds per acre, it is one seed every 18 inches in the row, with rows 36 inches apart. For 1/10 acre that is 968 seeds.

For 10,890 seeds per acre, it is one seed every 16 inches in the row, with rows 36 inches apart. For 1/10 acre that is 1,089 seeds.

For 14,520 seeds per acre, it is one seed every 12 inches in the row, with rows 36 inches apart. For 1/10 acre that is 1,452 seeds.

For 17,424 seeds per acre, it is one seed every 12 inches in the row, with rows 30 inches apart (this is crowded). For 1/10 acre that is 1,742 seeds.

There are online seed calculators where you enter the distance between seeds in the row and the distance between rows. It tells you how many seeds you need per acre or per 100 foot row.

Good Spacing Between Corn (Maize) Plants

Spacing depends on how rich the soil is and the amount of moisture that is expected. The more space between plants, the better the plants grow and the bigger the ears of corn.

With proper spacing, stalks and roosts are strong. Cherokee Flour corn plants are not prone to lodging (falling over).

Dried corn weighs about 56 pounds per bushel. Depending on your spacing, soil and moisture, you should get about 50-65 bushels per acre.

Proper Corn Plant Pollination

Corn has male (tassels at top of corn stalks) and female (pollinated through the silks on the ear) parts. Female corn flowers are pollinated almost always by wind, rarely by insects.

Pollen can be carried great distances, so for pure seed, ideally, your corn needs to be at least 1 mile from all other varieties of corn. With a distance of 1000 feet, your seed will still be reasonably pure.

Maintaining Genetic Diverstiy and Vigor

To prevent ‘inbreeding depression’ (not enough genetic variety) of corn (maize) seeds you save to plant, you need to take seeds from at least 100 different ears that were pollinated by at least 200 plants.

How to Properly Save Corn Seed

Carol Deppe goes into very good detail about this in her book "Breed Your Own Vegetable Varieties”. I highly recommend it if you want to save corn seed. Even one generation of inbreeding in corn can greatly reduce genetic diversity and vigor of the crop.

Fertilizing Your Corn Field

It is good to fertilize before planting your corn seed, and if you can, till it in.

When the corn plants are knee high, side dress with more fertilizer and till it lightly so you don’t disrupt the root system.

You can go between the rows with a small rototiller and till just the top of the soil to control weeds.

Harvesting Your Cherokee White Flour Corn

When the corn husks turn brown on the plant, remove the ears and store indoors (dry with good ventilation) for another month for complete drying.

Shelling & Storing Your Corn Seeds

When your corn seeds are thoroughly dry, shell the seed off the ear. Put in a plastic bag, and store where pests can not get to it such as in a refrigerator or freezer. If not stored in the fridge, then store in a glass or plastic container.

Shelled Cherokee White Flour Corn

Shelling percentage is the ratio or percentage of total ear weight to shelled corn weight.

Typical dent corns shell at 85% (if the dry ear weighs 10 ounces, it will shell at 8.5 ounces).

Cherokee White Flour Corn shells at around 65%. The ear count is good (number of seeds per ear).

Cherokee White Flour Corn: Buying & Description

Cherokee White Flour Corn: History

Cherokee White Flour Corn: More Photos

Cherokee Trail of Tears Black Beans

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