Thursday, August 10, 2006

Heirloom Harvests

This year, I planted several heirloom vegetables: Kentucky Wonder pole beans, also known as "Old Homestead" and "Texas Pole," was introduced before 1864; San Marzano, classic Italian paste tomatoes; and Tom Thumb, a dwarf heirloom popping corn.

The Tom Thumb plants yielded one or two ears per stalk, which, as you can see, really are about the size of a thumb.

We had lots of fun harvesting and were very excited to try our very own popcorn, though we all agreed that popcorn must have been a special treat, considering how much space, time and effort it took to produce! I began shucking the corn one afternoon, and Sam soon joined me. My thumb soon became sore, so my plan was to leave the remaining ears till the following day, but they proved irresistable to family members. Jim immediately jumped on board when he came home, so Sam joined in to show him how it was done, and upon returning home from the neighbor's house, the girls immediately joined in the round as well.Many hands really do make quick work!

Alas, the popping was not so successful. We will likely try some different techniques, considering we have quite a bit with which to experiment, but we won't likely be planting "Tom Thumb" again next year.


Madeline said...

I too had trouble! I so want to find a way to make it work. It wasn't our corn, but was from a small farmer. Post how to do it if you figure it out, please.

Jenny said...

I'm sure this won't help with your popping issue, but one fun thing we've done is to pop popcorn on the cob. Put it in a paper bag and microwave it on high until popping slows. We have gotten about 50-75% of the kernels to pop that way, and some of them stay on the cob which is just fun.