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Project Jo-Gee-Oh (miniature flour corn development project)

The development of a miniature flour corn variety

This projects goal is to develop a miniature flour corn.

Some time ago, I acquired a quantity of ears of multicolored* miniature corn which had managed to hybridize with larger non-popcorns, producing miniature corn which was of a flint/flour mix. It is my hope to refine this corn into a pure flour type retaining these miniature multicolored ears.

* All current seed is solid white, but it CAME from multicolored ears, so I assume the colors will re-appear in successive generations.

Researcher background
I have been a grower for many years and have a bachelors in Plant Science
Are you seeking volunteer growers or other types of volunteers?
Yes, seeking volunteer growers
How many volunteers do you need?
What will you ask volunteers to do?
Plant the seed I send you and, at harvest time do the following.

First, rogue out any ears that have lost the miniature trait (i.e. have grown to full corn ear size)
Also rogue out any ears showing NO floury kernels (basically, if there are no kernels that look opaque, out it goes)
Anything with non-clear pericarp*

Then, at shelling time, only plant those kernels showing FULL soft starch (basically, hold each potential kernel up to a light source and if any light shines through anywhere on the kernel, discard.

Since this is going for the ornamental market primarily, also discard any seed whose color is unattractive or "muddy" (this is why the current seed is all white, I couldn't find much if any nicely colored kernels passing. But they should develop.

* I may add colored pericarp back in later, but for the moment, it makes it too hard to see the starch distribution.

A few years of that should clean the corn up to a pure mini flour.

NOTE: At some point we may want to decide on what ear shape we are after, standard "carrot" shape or stubby "strawberry" shape (there are both in the mix). I am open to discussion on this.
Other requirements of volunteers?
Volunteers must have an isolated corn patch of at least 10x10 feet (20 x20 would be better, but if there is more than one volunteer we can work with 10x10.)

Patch must be isolated in order to make sure the corn only pollinates with itself.

Grower must (unlike me) have effective way of preventing whole crop from being eaten by critters.
Is this a multi-year project?
Can volunteers expect to be able to keep some germplasm (seeds, bulbs, cuttings, spores, etc) at the close of the project?
Anything else?
Sharing will be decided based on success. At the beginning, I should probably at least SEE any ears being put back into the mix.

Jo-Gee-Oh is the planned name for this new variety (after the "little people" of Iroquois legend) . If anyone thinks there is a problem with that and can come of with a better (or if you think it is culturally insensitive to name a corn with an Native American name) less offensive name. I am willing to listen.
Researcher Location

United States

Project Updates

Similar Breeding Project

project update by
Wednesday, January 6, 2021 - 06:11

I have been working on three similar concurrent breeding projects:

1.) Crossing Gaspe flint with dwarfing ear/plant selections of a certain flour corn that was gifted to me in which I have continued the dwarf trait selection process for years.
2.) Crossing Tom Thumb pop with the same.
3.) Crossing a certain small multieared open pollinated proprietary white rice kerneled pop variety with the same.

I honestly question the wisdom and value of any these breeding projects from a time/labor investment and a food production/yield standpoint, but they most certainly are interesting and have ornamental value. So, with respect, what is the point of folks such as you and I developing more ornamental vanity corns that have limited food/nutrition/yield/production value as compared to inputs and land allocation? There are enough such ornamental varieties already out there for people to hang on their entry doors every fall.