TOM THUMB POP CORN, also known as Japanese Hullless, is a delightful vintage variety with dwarf 3-1/2' stalks that each produce 2-4 ears 3"-4" long with pretty yellow seeds that pop up big and virtually hullless. To produce ideal popping, keep moisture content at 13%. 85-90 days. 25 seeds.
HOW TO POP: You can pop corn in your carousel microwave using a paper bag, scotch tape and a little oil -- spritzing the corn with olive or other oil before placing in the bag and sealing with tape. You may want to experiment with small quantities to get the temp and time correct. For example, the small kernal corn, like the tom thumb pop corn, takes a somewhat lower heat and less time than larger kernal. When popping stops, carefully open the bag and salt (I like to use Salt Sense, because it tastes just like regular salt but has half the sodium - and it has the lighter texture you want with popcorn). You can also play with various flavorings. Sure beats the high cost of store-bought!
GROWING TIPS: Corn needs hot weather, plenty of time to ripen, and plenty of room to grow. Corn is a heavy feeder that is particularly responsive to organic compost and sweet soil (pH 6.0 to 6.8) and requires regular watering for good ear production and taste. Do not plant corn until soil temperature is 60 degrees. Provide a sunny location. Plant seeds 1" deep and 4" - 6" apart. I usually plant a little closer together and thin out the weakest so that I have them 12" apart, hilling up the strongest. You can grow in rows or you can grow in short blocks, rather than long rows, and still achieve pollination, or you can pollinate by hand. Please note that you must separate (by at least 100 feet) or stagger plantings (to make sure their maturity days are at least 7 days apart) different varieties and types of corn since they will cross pollinate. Corn needs regular watering - an inch a week, but never water the upper stalks after they tassle - it washes away the pollen! And regular feeding - especially nitrogen and phosphorous. In my area we are prone to sudden violent thunderstorms which can flatten my corn bed. So I have taken to providing a stake fence and securing the growing stalks with string as they grow. It makes quite a difference! Nothing more aggravating than watching your beautiful corn bed ready to produce to completely on its side! It also seems to frustrate the critters who nightly raid my garden! Harvest when the silks are dry and brown, usually 3 weeks after they appear. By the way, did you know your coffee grinder makes an excellent corn mill? Just be sure to clean out (or have a separate one) before using for either purpose.
CHERRYGAL HEIRLOOM GARDEN SEEDS & PLANTS offer hundreds of heirloom and vintage open-pollinated varieties. Most have histories dating back centuries and are tried and true producers. Some are rare, or threatened with extinction. When you grow a plant from heirloom seed and save that seed, you are participating in a practice that goes back for generations. Our grandparents and their grandparents grew these varieties. Often the seeds were prized possessions carried to the New World when they emigrated.
Ever notice how most seed catalogs require you to buy much more seed than you could possibly use in a season? If you have a budget for garden seeds, this limits your choices! Although seeds can be viable for longer than one growing season, it requires that they be stored at a consistent temperature and humidity. Few of us do this. CherryGal sizes its seed packets for the home gardener, because we know you may want to grow 5 different lettuces, or three different corns, or 50 different vegetables, herbs and flowers -- and don’t want to have to take out a second mortgage to pay for it all! We strive to keep our overhead as low as possible so our seed prices can stay as low as possible. So we do not have a huge staff, no printed catalogues -- just very fine fresh heritage seeds at unbelievable prices. CHERRYGAL SEEDS ARE A TREMENDOUS BARGAIN!
Another important reason to grow a large variety of plants is that one of the chief culprits in honey bee colony collapse disorder seems to be that their immune systems are weakened by the prevalence of commercial mono-cropping. In other words, bees pollinating only one variety crop have a diet equivalent to eating only bread. Growing an abundant variety of vegetables, herbs and flowers will help sustain our precious honeybees!
All seeds offered are FRESH stock, with high germination rates, tested by the growers and myself. Varieties are specially selected for home gardeners. If you want the flavor you remember from grandma's kitchen garden or the beauty of her cottage flowers, choose CHERRYGAL HEIRLOOM SEEDS.
ABOUT OPEN-POLLINATED SEEDS . . . All CherryGal Heirloom Seeds are heirlooms (dating at least 100 years) or vintage (mid-20th Century or older) varieties, with an occasional modern variety included which I believe merits special attention. All CherryGal Heirloom Seeds are OPEN-POLLINATED. This means saved seed will be true to the parent. Don't be dazzled by the never-ending array of hybrid seeds promoted by gardening suppliers. First, seeds from that produce will not grow true to the parent -- you have to keep buying the hybrid seed (get the picture?). Second, most hybrids are developed for market – not home -- growers with an emphasis on extended shelf life, storage and shipping qualities -- NOT flavor, texture, fragrance and all those other elements that home growers seek.
All CHERRYGAL HEIRLOOM SEEDS come from reputable growers (most of them small farms) and wherever possible ORGANIC suppliers (so noted). By buying CHERRYGAL SEEDS you are supporting the growing worldwide movement of SUSTAINABLE AGRICULTURE and with a little practice you will be able to save even more money in the future by growing these open-pollinated varieties and saving seed for next year.
Please Note: CherryGal Heirloom Seeds are guaranteed to be fresh stock, but are not guaranteed as to results. Sorry, but there are too many variables in gardening that can impact germination so please do not ask for a refund, replacement or to return unused seed. I always recommend that if you are new to gardening, or to a particular type of plant or variety, that you grow just a few at first to test your germination method. Email with any questions - I always respond promptly. Having said all that, we think you will be pleased and would like to hear about your gardening success!
SHIPPING: This is important! Practiced gardeners know that the best time to order seeds is as early as possible in the season. I do not list varieties for sale that are not in hand. I also add/subtract varieties all season long as inventory fluctuates, so check back often. We are constantly improving our fulfillment procedures to decrease the amount of time from order to shipping. We have added a SHIPPING BANNER to the front of the site and on every listing page which will give you the current time frame for shipping seeds. In off-season, seeds ship very quickly - usually the next business day. But as the prime season comes on, shipping can slow. Please consult this shipping banner before you purchase, so there will be no disappointments! We fulfill orders in the order received. Choosing priority or express shipping does not influence the speed with which your order is processed, only the speed with which it moves through the postal system. I package my seeds for shipping in a manner appropriate to the amount and type of seed - larger orders and larger seeds require more packaging. Whether you choose first class mail or priority shipping, your seeds will ship using a delivery confirmation number which will be supplied to you. This is NOT a tracking number, usually. The new postal protocols are such that your package is not scanned on my end (usually) and will not appear in usps tracking until it gets to your end. Our checkout system is keyed to the US Postal System. For small seed orders, I recommend choosing FIRST CLASS mail at checkout. Larger orders (over 13 ounces) can ship either parcel post, or you may find PRIORITY MAIL to be less expensive, depending on your zipcode. (I gave up trying to figure out the US Postal System rates a long time ago).
I appreciate all my CherryGal.com customers, but have a special affinity for my seed customers. If you have a problem, please email me, using the contact links that are all over the website. Calling is likely to be a frustrating experience, as I do not have the staff to answer the phone, but your email will be promptly responded to.
Lastly, keep an eye out for my end of season sale. It is always a bargain and it is my goal to completely clear the shelves each season so that I am offering you only the freshest seeds year to year. Happy Gardening!