Tuesday, July 04, 2006

knee high

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The old saying goes, the corn should be "knee high by the Fourth of July".

At the beginning of June that was in doubt. The corn wasn't growing very fast. But recent rains caused a growing spurt.

My good intentions were to get a young child to stand in the corn field for a photographic shoot. Pictures of corn mean nothing scale-wise unless there's some point of reference. A cute young kid would have been a great reference. The nieces and nephews were otherwide engaged in fun Fourth of July activities. Likewise the neighbor kids, although I can imagine the parents pondering the request....."You want to drive my kid over to the Swanberg cornfield and do what?"

Lacking any outside cooperation I set the camera on the timer, propped it on the trunk of the car and pushed the shutter. Next I ran across the roadway and attempted to position myself in a pose with the corn. What am I looking at? I'm looking at the shallow ditch at the edge of the field. This soon-to-be-60-year-old is trying not to fall in the attempt at photo taking.

Anyway, here's the corn. I'm 5 foot 6 inches tall, so as you can see it's certainly bigger than knee-high. Here at the Farmers Wife we will probably spend alot of time in the next couple of months watching the corn grow. Regardless of what you might think, it's an exciting activity.

Here's a Corn Cam - bookmark it and watch along as the corn grows!

Corn Cam


Lisa said...

This former detasseler (originally from Plano, Illinois) thanks you for the cool picture, and the corn cam link!

Michael Nickels-Wisdom said...

Thanks for the Corn Report. I love to hear the squeaking of the corn. Around here, Stade's farm out off Spring Grove Road announces on their billboard that there are two weeks left until the first available ears. Can't wait, so we at our house can have our ritual summer meal of blts, corn on the cob, and strawberry shortcake, usually eaten sometime in August.

Four or five years ago, one of my haiku came out for the corn...

of the cornfield
newly mown

...but you have to have heard the squeaking (as I expect you have) to feel that silence.

Tammy said...

I've heard that saying all my life...lol!!
I hated it when the fields by my house in Kentucky were planted in corn...it gets smelly in the heat and I would get a suffocated feeling with it all around me like that...liked it much better when they would do soy beans!

pablo said...

I think a picture of your knee might have been more appropriate for the quotation. But you know how strange I am.

Zanne said...

Thanks everyone for the kind comments. Comments are a very good thing...it means people are looking and reading, and that perhaps it has struck a chord.

Lisa - I've heard that detassling is the WORST JOB EVER! We're going to have to suggest it for that TV guy, "The World's Dirtiest Jobs". Did you know that a person who lives half between Plano and Sandwich can say they're from "Plain-O-Sandwich?" HA.

Michael, I'm sad to say that I haven't heard the corn squeaking. Most times I'm in a cornfield there's large machinery involved. I am totally fascinated now and I'll have to park myself in a cornfield and listen closely. This field is dent corn - feed corn. I too am waiting patiently for the sweet corn to be harvested. Sugar Grove's Corn Fest is a reason to pig out. At our house we soak as many ears of corn that will fit in a very large bucket filled with salt water. Then we get the grill fired up really hot and load the corn on for roasting. Peel back the shucks which now serves as a handle - and dip in a coffee can filled with melted butter. Salt finishes the delicacy. Many ears are consumed in this manner. By the way, the haiku is wonderful.

I love the coddled, hugged in feeling of going down a road with cornfields on each side - but I'm not a claustrophobic person. One summer a friend was visiting from southeast Oklahoma. That year the corn was freakishly tall - I'd say some was 9 to 11 feet tall. I drove down a road through the middle of this freak corn and she said that corn made her nervous...she needed to get back to Oklahoma!

Pablo - I'm sure you're right on this one, but trust me, no one wants to see my knees. Plus it was difficult to run across the road and position myself even to get this view.

srp said...

I come from good farmer stock so should be able to grow something. Yes my little cherry tomatoe plant is giving just enough for us to eat each day. And yes, there will be beef steak tomatoes ready by Sunday. And one set of cucumbers are giving small tender ones every other day or so. But on the other side of the house there are early pan squash and more cucumbers with loads and loads of blooms, but no squash and no cucumbers. Also my lone bell pepper plant has one, about an inch across now and growing agonizingly slow. I think we just need more practice.

So do you have a cam in your garden?

Lisa said...

Maybe it just reveals the Midwestern workaholic in me, or maybe I'm just remembering it with great nostalgia now that it's over, but I always liked detasseling! I enjoyed the camraderie with the other kids, and the cornfield shenanigans, and the feeling of the sun on my arms as my little Type A Self pulled yet another errant tassel. The only think I really, really hated was the early hour at which the work day began. But we were almost always off work in time to catch at least the end of that day's Cubs game on WGN. Ah, good times.

(and very clever re the Plain-Ol-Sandwich!)

Floridacracker said...

Down here, that saying is inaccurate. Corn's done by the 4th and the second planting is being put in.

Zebigleb said...

We have the same kind of proverb in France about corn !
I'm very glad of this post, and thanx for the funny idea of corn cam, it's going to be a real thriller movie

Have a very nice day


Michael Nickels-Wisdom said...

A coffee can full of butter... I can hear my doctor.

I'm just a Chicago kid, born and raised, and live out here in Spring Grove for the sanity. So, the squeaking corn surprised me.

Thank you very much for the compliment about the haiku.

KatKit13 said...

It's wonderful to see what you look like too.

I've heard the corn squeak. It's pretty cool. But I love the dry rustle of the wind through drying field corn - it's just such a peaceful sound.

Corn lately has been very high by 4th of July... we've been early, what now, the last 3 years?

Kat - who's really waiting for tomatoes!! MMMM