Glass Gem Ornamental Corn

2 Materials
5 Months

I think I first saw this on Instagram or maybe Pinterest? It was a picture of beautiful glass gem corn perfect for fall decorating. So pretty, I wasn’t sure if it was a real picture. I ordered it off Amazon and planted it in the spring. I am going to post tips that I wish I had known or done differently but all in all I am pretty happy with the ears of corn that I have harvested. I plan on planting these seeds from these cobs next year. If I read all my information correctly, to plant seeds of harvested corn, the original seeds must be Heirloom seeds and these are. Save your seed packets! Many times, I am looking for a packet for information months later. Just FYI... my pictures have zero filter so this should be your results, too. I was very happy with the end result.

I was surprised at how small the package was and it didn’t look like 50 seeds at all but it probably was. But from those few seeds I have had plenty of corn stalks grow. The seeds that looked rather unremarkable packed a lot of surprise.

You need to to follow the directions on how deep to plant and how many rows are needed for pollination. I planted mine in three rows and they seemed too close together because I was working in a raised bed.

Mine developed ear worms. So, I would recommend regular dusting the corn once you begin to see small ears appear. I didn’t discover them in the beginning so it was kind of like shutting the door after the Fox is in the henhouse. The ear worms or caterpillars  didn’t ruin the corn completely but they ruined small areas on all my cobs. I picked them off and fed them to my chickens. They thought those were the best treats ever. The worms that I fed my chickens were before I dusted the corn, very important. Do not dust during extremely hot weather. I did and I think it stunned the corn and everything that was growing and developing came to a standstill.

Here are my first four ears.

This one is my favorite. I am going to dry them out and plant them next year. I couldn’t find much on line about using these to plant next year. Any tips from you pro gardeners, who do this?

I did end up finding the seed packet. I was a little surprised at how 50 seeds doesn't look like 50 seeds. But that is just that I am a gardening novice.

So pretty!

Next year, I hope to get a better handle on the weeds.

So, I stored these away in my greenhouse until spring but in January we had a cold snap here in Virginia. I went to move my chickens into the greenhouse and found something had eaten most of glass gem corn that I was storing there. There was a tell tale bird nest in there but it also could have been mice. Be smarter than me when you store your seeds for the next year. The precious few seeds that are left are in a metal popcorn tin! I think I am going to order more seeds from Amazon, just in case the ones that are left are duds.

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Frequently asked questions

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  2 questions
  • Stu Stu on Feb 02, 2019

    Is this corn eatable or just ornamental ?

  • Patty Patty on Feb 04, 2019

    Do you think this corn would produce colored popcorn?


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4 of 15 comments
  • Susan Latta Susan Latta on Feb 04, 2019

    I believe you can store seeds in the refrigerator so they don't go bad as quickly.

    I love Indian Corn, my dad use to grow it. We were all enamored of the various colors of the corn. I learned from him that vegetables don't want to compete with weeds or the vegetable will peter out. Buy some gloves, a big hat, and a hoe and be thankful to do your due diligence to the food you have planted. You can always reduce the size of the garden too.

    • Jeanne Martin Jeanne Martin on Feb 15, 2019

      Spoken well...I need to remember this!

      "be thankful to do your due diligence to the food you have planted."

      Thank you!

  • Anne Davis Anne Davis on Mar 20, 2019

    Instead of dusting your corn for worms, try a few drops of vegetable oil on the tips of the corn cobs into the tassels. Of course, you were chickens will not be happy with you.

    • Autumn Brandi Buffkin Autumn Brandi Buffkin on Mar 22, 2019

      What does the oil do? It seems there would still be damage to the corn 🌽 since the corn is already matured when your advising to apply the oil...? Or am I not understanding you correctly?