Saturday, July 28, 2007

And the Fruits Will Out Do What the Flowers Have Promised

My mom has this saying in her kitchen. I wish I had taken a picture of it while I was there a couple of weeks ago because my mere mention of it does not do it justice. It is in an elegant, delicate, swirly sort of font and surrounded by grapes...that were all individually cut out by hand. It's a masterpiece, a work of fine art. This, by contrast, is what is in my kitchen.

I slapped it up there one night, celebrated my brief decorating moment and clever, plump self with a bowl of ice cream, and have never looked back...until this afternoon.

I decided the time had come to see if the corn was ripe which, incidentally, I have no idea how to do. What I was planning to do back when we planted it was to take a more agricultural approach. That is, wait precisely 94 days from germination, at which point I would get the combine out of our barn and harvest our crop. Alas, at some point during that critical 94-day period, my laptop crashed and with it went my gardening calendar. So then I just kind of had to guess at it. My process went something like this: Go to Michigan for a week, come home to an A/C unit that had been hit by lightening, wait a week in sweltering 97 degree heat to get it fixed, run VBS for 3-days, call in payroll, send my husband off to France, put the kids down for a nap, race outside to check on the corn. When, after about a month of neglect I finally got to it, I realized I still had no idea how to tell if it was ready or not. So I opened an ear up and pushed in on a kernel. I'm not sure what I was expecting, I just see a lot of folks doing that at the grocery store when it's selling at 10 for $1. Anyway, I decided it was ripe enough for me. Actually, what convinced me was that I looked at 2 ears and the second was being consumed by ants. Surely arts aren't going to eat unripe corn...right?

Per usual, Griffin was the first up from his nap, so he got the pleasure of picking all 12 ears of corn. By that time I was panicking that maybe the ants were eating ALL of it. But no. Just most of it. Apparently, it had been ripe for quite some time. Probably about three weeks.

If it seems strange to you that someone under 3-feet tall could possibly pick corn from stalks that were supposed to grow to 7-feet, it's because our world-record breaking tomato plants grew to about 10-feet and shaded the corn. You can see in this picture that the corn stalk is kind of curved. That's not because Griffin is stepping on it, that's how they all grew. It's surprising we even got a dozen ears from the stalks, though a dozen is a generous count considering most of them are the size of the one Carter is holding.

Regardless, they were unspeakably delicious - miles and miles better in taste than grocery store corn. Suffice it to say, the fruits really did out do what the flowers had promised. And it strikes me that maybe this was the way God had intended our first corn crop to grow; low to the ground so a two-year old could pick it, and with child-sized ears that are a perfect for a 4-year old. Apparently, God also knows that neither child likes tomatoes.


  1. This exact same thing happened to me a few years ago. I grew corn and the ants attacked right as it was getting ripe! However, I still thought it was delicious, as did Grandma Bustrum. I miss you, Sweet Sister.

  2. Love your perspective on the corn for little guys!