Thompson's Prolific White Dent Corn
Tall, productive stalks yield two heavy, 8-inch, cream-colored ears - hence the name 'prolific'! Good eating off the cob and also used as stock feed. This variety was grown by Chelsea Askew on her family's land in Peavine, GA. She says, "I haven't exactly been able to come up with words to express what it feels like to cultivate the corn that was grown and saved by my great grandfather, Pop, on the land where he grew it for decades to feed his family, livestock, and all the microbes involved in his art of fermentation and distillation."
This corn has a long history in the South. Thompson's Prolific was offered by Diggs & Beadles, Inc. Seed Merchants in Richmond, VA as early as 1910. At the Virginia Corn Grower's Association's "Corn-Day" that year, they announced they would give a prize of up to $10 in garden seeds to the farmer who could grow the biggest yield of Thompson's Prolific on one acre. It was perhaps bred by W J Thompson of Siler City, NC, who was listed as a grower for this seed in 1915 in a Farmers Market Bulletin issued by the North Carolina Agricultural Experiment Station. This corn was especially recommended for Tennessee growers by their state's experiment stations, as mentioned in a USDA Corn Improvement bulletin in 1936.
Days to maturity: 90-110
Seeds per pack: 60
Planting / harvesting notes
Corn requires warm soil to germinate. Wait a week or two after the last frost and sow seeds directly in the ground. Plant in rows 2-3' apart. For good pollination, it is better to plant in blocks rather than in one or two long rows. Sow 1" deep and thin to every 6-12" within the row. Keep soil moist until germination.Consider planting successions every few weeks for continual harvest.
Seed keeping notes
Corn is wind pollinated and should be isolated by 2-3 miles from other varieties of corn to avoid unwanted cross-pollination. Another option is to separate your corn plantings by 3-4 weeks so they do not flower/tassel at the same time. Allow the cobs and kernels to dry on the plants before harvesting for seed. If you are concerned about neighbor's corn plots hybridizing yours, consider only harvesting seed from the plants towards the middle of your plot, leaving the outer rows for eating. If necessary, lay out the cobs to do some final drying before removing the husks and seeds.