SHOP PRODUCTS
Houzz Logo Print
edymnion

Glass Gem Corn

Edymnion
11 years ago

Okay, I may be a little behind the cutting edge of corn (actually, I never thought I would say a sentence as odd as that one), but I just now discovered glass gem corn. For those that saw it when it was first discovered a couple months ago, well, prepare to talk about it all over again.

{{gwi:99679}}

{{gwi:99681}}

Wow, thats some amazing corn!

I'm currently on the waiting list to get some seed over at nativeseeds.org:

http://www.nativeseeds.org/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=108

The place that originated these, Seeds Trust, is apparently still so overwhelmed that their site is still down from traffic overload.

Gotta try and get my grubby little hands on some of this stuff to grow next year!

Comments (34)

  • azzure08(zone8a)
    11 years ago

    thats so pretty! I would just grow it for the colors lol

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    I know, I want a couple dozen stalks of this stuff to make sure I get really big full ears and just use them as decorations. Heck, I could almost see making jewelry out of these things.

  • naturegirl_2007 5B SW Michigan
    11 years ago

    Wow, it's gorgeous.

    It reminds me a lot of the picture of corn I'm growing this year, Smoke Signals from Seed Savers Exchange. Mine isn't ready yet, but I think it can be eaten as sweet corn when immature and used as popcorn or fall decorative corn when mature. I'm hoping it survives the heat and drought....so far it's looking good.

    Seems like the right ears, the right lighting, and a good photographer could make this look even more beautiful than the seed pack photo. Might make a good second choice to try for those unable to get glass gem seed.

    Here is a link that might be useful: Smoke Signals corn

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Finally found some better info on it. Its a type of flint corn (was to be expected, but good to have confirmation). Good for grinding into flour or for use as popcorn. Not suitable for eating straight, as its not even close to being a sweetcorn.

  • RpR_
    11 years ago

    Go to the Native Seeds site and they have a goodly number of flint corns.
    Do your own hybridizing and you will be amazed what the results can be.

    Flint corn is more like popcorn, not field/dent/flour corn.
    The latter can be used as sweet corn but the former not such a good idea.

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Yeah, I don't have the patience at the moment to spend 5-10 years perfecting a new strain of anything. If I did, it would be a pepper though, not corn.

    I'll just let these guys do all the work, and then grow the results. =D

  • williammorgan
    11 years ago

    That is incredible looking. Thanks for the link. i love looking for unusual things to grow.

  • luigi_13
    11 years ago

    But:
    does it actually exist?
    Has anyone seen it in flesh?
    Or is it only the latest Web Wonder?
    I'd like to have it, but I've been disappointed so many times...

  • nc_crn
    11 years ago

    It exists, but to get colors that vivid you need to wash/"polish" the ears.

    While some ears will pop will color, many look a bit more pastel-ish or muted compared to the colors popping in the photo...but yes, multi-color kernels on ears are out there.

    Unfortunately, they're not very good eating right off the ear...kinda starchy.

  • melissa_seedhead
    11 years ago

    I have seen it. You can get it from Native Seeds/SEARCH. There is a waiting list but it seems likely that you can still get it in time for 2013 planting. http://shop.nativeseeds.org/products/ts363

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    I highly doubt it, actually.

    I've been on that waiting list since the middle of last year. In that time they have missed their projected availability date with no contact of any kind. I'm even on their facebook page, nothing.

    This is the first I've heard of a spring 2013 date, but at this point I'm greatly doubting that anybody will actually get any of this stuff.

  • bama35967
    11 years ago

    read the whole story carls glass gem corn on motherearth web site http://www.motherearthnews.com/

  • wertach zone 7-B SC
    11 years ago

    Same here Edymnion. I've been on the list too.

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    If there had been any money involved, I would have called this one a scam by now. Being that no money has changed hands, I wouldn't call it a scam but I wouldn't honestly say I think this stuff is on the up and up. A trick to get traffic to their site and hope you'll buy other stuff from them while you're there maybe.

    I dunno, but IMO a reputable, trustworthy source that makes a waiting list and gives a semi-hard date on when seed would be made available (it was October of last year, I believe) and then misses that date entirely should at the very least *USE* that contact list information to send out a mass email along the lines of "Sorry, the drought this year wiped out most of the seed harvest. We're still trying to get enough up to sell, but it'll be at least a few more months before we can do that. We'll keep you posted."

  • crwilson12
    11 years ago

    There is some glass gem corn seed available on ebay several people got seed last year and are now selling it

  • nc_crn
    11 years ago

    Native Seeds/SEARCH is extremely understaffed and more of a seed bank + education center than a retail outlet. They plant/store a lot more seed than you see on their website for sale. They also rely heavily on volunteers. You gotta give them a little slack (imo). While they reach a world-wide market, their mission is heavily concentrated on agriculture in the South-West.

    They do good work, do a lot of workshops, and bring in a lot of high profile speakers for a relatively cheap price (or free).

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    There is some glass gem corn seed available on ebay several people got seed last year and are now selling it

    Excellent, just got 40 seeds for a fairly reasonable price, should be enough to grow out a few dozen stalks to see how it preforms. If it does well, I can invest in more next year to keep the inbreeding depression at bay.

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Looky what I've got...

    {{gwi:99684}}

  • RpR_
    11 years ago

    "If there had been any money involved, I would have called this one a scam by now. Being that no money has changed hands, I wouldn't call it a scam but I wouldn't honestly say I think this stuff is on the up and up. A trick to get traffic to their site and hope you'll buy other stuff from them while you're there maybe.

    "I dunno, but IMO a reputable, trustworthy source that makes a waiting list and gives a semi-hard date on when seed would be made available (it was October of last year, I believe) and then misses that date entirely should at the very least *USE* that contact list information to send out a mass email along the lines of "Sorry, the drought this year wiped out most of the seed harvest. We're still trying to get enough up to sell, but it'll be at least a few more months before we can do that. We'll keep you posted."
    ---------------------

    My parents, rather than blame others for every or anything, told me buyer beware.
    If as child I made bad choice in acquiring something, they did not let it totally go, but they said the true fault is yours, no one forced you to do this.
    There us still this thing called a telephone which has been around longer than the inter-net.
    Use it.
    If anyone is too lazy to use it and wants to blame someone, look in the mirror.

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    Okay, so its my fault an organization doesn't live up to it's promises with no explanation given, and that despite the fact no money or investment beyond simple time changed hands I am not allowed to feel cheated by them?

    I personally find that rather offensive.

  • nc_crn
    11 years ago

    Native Seeds/SEARCH didn't intend on Glass Gem being posted on 1000000000 Facebook pages or having articles written about it. It's popularity has blown up over the past couple years and I'd venture that most people who actually bought seeds have no idea how to properly grow small stands of corn or never bothered to put it into the ground.

    I, personally, know 2 people who have acquired seed for this corn. 1 had a failed crop because they got bored with garden maintenance (aka, they didn't water) after a few months and another has only taken the seeds out to play with them and show others.

    Native Seeds/SEARCH is a small non-profit and selling seeds is a rather minor part of their operation/focus...and it's mostly handled by volunteers. Much of the work they do is keeping seed lines alive on their own farms as well as others who provide seed for them. They also arrange a lot of low-cost/free speakers and research.

    At the root of it all, they're a non-profit dedicated to keeping native South-West seed lines alive...not a seed selling company.

  • Edymnion
    Original Author
    11 years ago

    You know what, nevermind. I had a long post here about integrity and trying to sweep failures under the rug, but I'm done with it.

    Bottom line is I don't feel like they behaved in a professional manner. I've been able to acquire seed from an alternative source, so I just no longer care about these people one way or the other.

    This post was edited by Edymnion on Wed, Jan 23, 13 at 16:43

  • nc_crn
    11 years ago

    The thing about their waiting list is they only share when available...and members -always- come first. Seed selling is a rather minor part of their operation, though the popularity of GG corn blew up viral all over the internet. This is akin to a mom/pop operation that focuses on other things suddenly having something everyone and their brother wants to buy from them. While seed selling is a fund raising source, they're not going to forego their preservation and seed banking operations to grow 160 acres of GG corn to meet demand (most of which didn't exist on this level until early 2012). It's a very long season corn that takes 100-130 days to harvest. They'll probably be much better prepared next season...as well as many other vendors growing this license-free OP corn. There's no strangling of the market going on...their purpose for existing is getting people to spread/grow their seed sources.

    Their main focus is seed source preservation/bank and almost all their sales are done via a volunteer staffing source.

    I wouldn't rely on anything from them that's popular. That's not what they do. I've never heard of them having to have a waiting list for a non-rare item in their entire existence, especially since they got their farm in the late 90s.

    The kicker is this corn has been around a very long time, but some viral internet kicking around of it's existence has made it's demand go through the roof. If it wasn't for NS/Search it would be even harder to find...and it doesn't help there's so many non-farmers and ill-prepared hobbyists snaking the supply.

    A similar thing would happen if the internet suddenly discovered some of the other rarely-cultivated varieties that they grow. They're just about the only organization out there still trying to keep some of this stuff in circulation.

    It sucks that people are relying on this non-profit for a seed source, but that will improve over the next few years...which is kind of the point of this organization's existence.

    In case you can't tell, I'm a huge long-time supporter (and member) of this organization even though I've only purchased seed from them once...and it was pepper seed many years ago. Also, members get a catalog available that goes way beyond the online offerings. Never in it's history has anything they've sold been close to this popular. It didn't help that the image of it that floated all over the net was of a highly developed and very highly polished/washed ear of corn that grew in an ideally filled-out cob. Some people are going to be disappointed when they harvest non-filled out, non-linear grain cobs that needs a bit of careful washing to get the brilliant colors that made it popular.

    This post was edited by nc-crn on Wed, Jan 23, 13 at 17:01

  • wertach zone 7-B SC
    10 years ago

    I got an e-mail from them finally! I ordered the seed today.

  • backwoodsgirl
    10 years ago

    This corn is beautiful! And I just ordered some. They had over 7,000 orders! No wonder they were late in getting them out.

  • Martina2013
    10 years ago

    I wasn't sure if the Glass Gem was just marketing hype or not, so I bought Smoke Signals corn from seedsavers.org. I planted it mixed with Mandan Bride. This ear is my favorite so far this year.

  • Martina2013
    10 years ago

    Here is the full view. I really love the variety of colors.

  • yukkuri_kame
    10 years ago

    If you want a beautiful multicolored sweet corn, Rainbow Inca fits the bill.

    Here is a link that might be useful: http://www.eatabbo.org/rainbow-inca-corn.html

  • Shinies
    10 years ago

    I got my seeds earlier this year, and now finally some ears were ready to be plucked! This is my first real success with corn (the rarity and price of the seeds was motivating). Here they are! Some are pollinated better than others, but beautiful colors still! No modifications here, just pulled off the silks.

  • greenmulberry
    10 years ago

    That is beautiful! I don't usually grow corn, but I would grow that to get some nice stalks for decorating.

  • wertach zone 7-B SC
    10 years ago

    They look great! I didn't get to plant my seed due to too much rain.

    They probably would have been moldy anyway since the rain hasn't let up all summer. It's raining right now!

    I will plant them next year if I don't lose them!

  • nerys54
    9 years ago

    Anyone planning to grow glass gem corn this year ?

  • wertach zone 7-B SC
    9 years ago

    Yes Nerys54, if I can find my seed!

    I thought I put them in my fridge in the shed.

    I was going through my seed stored there yesterday, while getting ready to start some stuff and I couldn't find the seed!!!!!!!

    I still have plenty of time to find them, but knowing me, they probably got thrown out with some empty packets of other seed!

  • wertach zone 7-B SC
    9 years ago

    Well, I found the seed and planted them.

    I harvested a few weeks ago and I didn't get the rainbow of colors that I was expecting.

    Like in Shinies picture, Some ears were almost all yellow and some were almost all dark blue. I had very few red kernels.

    I will plant the saved seed next year and hopefully get more color.

Sponsored
Iris Design Associates
Average rating: 5 out of 5 stars22 Reviews
Northern Virginia Landscape Architect - 13x Best of Houzz Winner!
Best of Houzz 2024: The results are in!