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THE OLD AND THE NEW IN CORN CULTURE


THE OLD AND THE NEW
IN CORN CULTURE

Page

 
1

Corn The Great American Cereal
Corn and the Early Colonies

2 Corn and the Indian
3a Photos - Corn & Tools
3b Photos - Indians in corn fields
4a Photos - Corn Drying & Hopi field
4b Photos - Mortar and Pestles
5 Kinds of Corn Grown by the Indians.
6 Primitive Seed-testing Methods.
The Nettle Seed Tester
7 Primitive Corn-Planting Methods
8 Indian Cornfields
Primitive Tools
9 Plants as Indicators of the Season
10 Seed Selection and Storing
11

Indian Corn Foods

12

Primitive and Modern Methods of Culture
13 Corn and the Westward Movement
14 Corn and the Packing Industry
15 The Silo and the Corn Crop
16 Variations of the Corn Plant
17 Corn and the Struggle for Democracy

 

 

From the Yearbook of the United States Department of Agriculture 1918
page 9

CornCulture1918-8.htmBy H. Howard Biggar,
Office of Corn Investigations, Bureau of Plant Industry.

PLANTS AS INDICATORS OF THE SEASON.

   There were three important periods in the field work of the agricultural Indians: (1) Planting time, (2) roasting-ear time, and (3) the harvest period. After planting, most of the members of the tribes left for other locations for the summer hunt. Usually, some of the women were left to attend to the weeding out of the patches. At roasting-ear time, many returned from the hunt to gather corn and prepare it for food, much of it being parched and put away for future use. When the ears were ripe, both men and women joined in the harvest.
   It is of interest to note that the time to return from the hunt to gather the roasting ears and the ripe ears was indicated to the hunters by the appearance of prairie flowers the Indians having learned the relations between the growth stages of corn and other plants. One of these indicator plants was the blazing star, or buttonweed, whose habitat includes the States of the Middle West. According to an informant of the Omaha tribe in Nebraska, this plant was used as follows: When the Indians on their hunting trips saw the first small flower buds appearing on the blazing star, they knew that the corn in their fields at home was approaching the milk stage. When the buds were entirely open, the corn was ready for parching and it was time to return. Later in the season, when the plant was through blossoming, they knew that the corn was ripe and it was time to harvest. Other plants used as indicator plants on the Plains were the cat-tail and the goldenrod.

 

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