Stories from the Stringam Family Ranches of Southern Alberta

From the 50s and 60s to today . . .



Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Let Them Eat Corn

I can only dream . . .
I’ve never been able to grow corn.
The planets are aligned against it.
Why am I thinking of this in the middle of winter?
Because it’s the middle of winter.
Moving on . . .
For over thirty years, I’ve kept a garden.
Oh, it has changed in that time.
Mostly gotten smaller.
For many, many of those years, I attempted to grow corn.
Corn-on-the-cob just says summer to me.
Most of the time, my tidy little corn plants merely peeked above ground.
Sighed.
And died.
Twice, they grew to maturity.
Developed ears, even.
And then . . .
Well, let me tell you about it.
I had a large garden behind our mobile home just outside of Orton, Alberta. (Near Fort MacLeod)
It was growing beautifully.
The weather had cooperated.
The rains had come when they were needed.
Plenty of sun.
For the first time, ever, I had mature corn plants.
Nearly ready to harvest mature corn plants.
Then, one sunny, but slightly breezy day, the county sprayer drove by.
Spraying the ditches.
For weeds.
Now, if there is any wind, the county sprayers are supposed to be cautious. Not spray near homesteads. Avoid people.
This sprayer . . . wasn’t.
Cautious, that it.
And the next day, I walked out into my garden and noticed that everything looked . . . wilted.
My first thought was frost.
Okay, it was July, the only month of the year when frost is . . . uncommon.
Then I remembered the sprayer.
Long story short – the weed-killer had lived up to its name.
My garden – and my beautiful corn – was dead.
Sigh.
A couple of years later, in a different small house and with a different garden patch, I again saw my efforts to grow corn rewarded.
Saw ears develop.
And then . . . grasshoppers.
In 1983, in Southern Alberta, we had a ‘plague of locusts’. A real plague – look it up. They were so numerous that cars were known to slip in the tide that constantly flowed across the roads. They devoured crops and hay.
And my corn. Drilled holes right through those babies.
Another sigh.
Oh, I didn’t give up.
I tried.
And tried.
And tried.
But never again did my corn amount to anything more than tall, attractive (earless) plants.
I still eat corn.
And corn-on-the-cob still shouts summer to me.
But, alas, someone else has to do the growing.
I will stick with the appreciating .
And devouring.
The two things I’m obviously best at.


16 comments:

  1. I'm really good at devouring, as well. Yum! And the farmers around here make growing it look so easy! Better luck to you next summer, if you attempt it again. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm afraid my corn-growing days are done. My tomato-growing days, however . . .

      Delete
  2. I give you credit for trying to grow corn! The bears, woodchucks, deer or some other animal would eat ours up. But I do love corn!

    Nice post.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Darn those pests! Yours are larger and furry. Mine, small and six-legged. Ick.

      Delete
  3. Interesting about corn and how some cultures don't go near it. We had a German immigrant working for us years ago and he called corn 'pig feed.'

    We live in the south so we've got copious amounts of 'Taber Corn.' Besides, we couldn't grow it in our garden because I've got a '42 Ford parked on it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Husby was told the same thing when he lived in France. Taber corn is world famous! So are '42 Fords. What sort of seeds did you plant to get yours?

      Delete
  4. Out our way the corn culprits are raccoons.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They're headed our way, I'm told. Sigh.

      Delete
  5. Raccoons in our neck of the woods, too! My father was able to grow mini-corns a couple of years, though. The ears just wouldn't develop past half-way. But they tasted full-size :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sounds like an ad. Half the size - All the taste! :)

      Delete
  6. My parents used to grow corn, but guess who had to go weed the garden...yep, me the little slave.

    Happy eatins!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Mom tried that with me, too. I don't remember her ever succeeding . . .

      Delete
  7. I once grew a tiny stand of corn and got to eat a couple of tiny ears fresh from the stalk, so sweet!
    But never since and I've never ever managed to grow pumpkins.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ugh! Pumpkins and I have a history, too!

      Delete
  8. Have just read George's comment and remember that my mum (German) thought of corn as pig food and lettuce was rabbit food. Her dad raised prize winning rabbits. That woman never ate a green salad in her whole life. Plenty of potato and bacon salad though.

    ReplyDelete

Thank you for visiting! Drop by again!

All of My Friends

Daughter of Ishmael

Daughter of Ishmael
Now available at Amazon.com and .ca and Chapters.ca and other fine bookstores.

Follow by Email

Hugs, Delivered.

Ghost of the Overlook

Ghost of the Overlook
Need a fright?

Google+ Followers

Networked Blogs

My Granddaughter is Carrying on the Legacy!

My Granddaughter is Carrying on the Legacy!
New Tween Novel!

Gnome for Christmas

Gnome for Christmas
The newest in my Christmas Series

SnowMan

SnowMan
A heart warming story of love and sacrifice.

Translate

My novel, Carving Angels

My novel, Carving Angels
Read it! You know you want to!

My Second Novel: Kris Kringle's Magic

My Second Novel: Kris Kringle's Magic
What could be better than a second Christmas story?!

About the Mom

My photo

Diane was born and raised on one of the last of the great old Southern Alberta ranches. A way of life that is fast disappearing now. Through her memories and stories, she keeps it alive. And even, at times, accurate . . .

Join me on Maven

Connect with me on Maven

Essence

Essence
A scientist and his son struggle to keep their earth-shattering discovery out of the wrong hands.

Essence: A Second Dose

Essence: A Second Dose
Captured and imprisoned, a scientist and his son use their amazing discovery to foil evil plans.

Looking for a Great Read?

E-Books by Diane Stringam Tolley
Available from Smashwords.com

The Babysitter

The Babysitter
A baby-kidnapping ring has its eye on J'Aime and her tiny niece.

Melissa

Melissa
Haunted by her past, Melissa must carve a future. Without Cain.

Devon

Devon
Following tragedy, Devon retreats to the solitude of the prairie. Until a girl is dropped in his lap.

Pearl, Why You Little...

Pearl, Why You Little...
Everyone should spend a little time with Pearl!

The Marketing Mentress

The Marketing Mentress
Building solid relationships with podcast and LinkedIn marketing

Coffee Row

Coffee Row
My Big Brother's Stories

Better Blogger Network

Semper Fidelis

Semper Fidelis
I've been given an award!!!

The Liebster Award

The Liebster Award
My good friend and Amazing Blogger, Marcia of Menopausal Mother awarded me . . .

Irresistibly Sweet Award

Irresistibly Sweet Award
Delores, my good friend from The Feathered Nest, has nominated me!

Sunshine Award!!!

Sunshine Award!!!
My good friend Red from Oz has nominated me!!!

My very own Humorous Blogger Award From Delores at The Feathered Nest!

Be Courageous!


Grab and Add!

Search This Blog

Ghost of the Overlook

Ghost of the Overlook
Need a fright?