Farming Advice: Cooking Sweetcorn, Repelling Pet Pests and a Sunflower Playhouse

Farming advice from MOTHER and her readers, including cooking sweetcorn ears, repelling pet pests and planting a sunflower playhouse.

| July/August 1978

MOTHER EARTH NEWS readers share their farming advice, fun tips and country folklore, including repelling pet pests, planting a sunflower playhouse and cooking sweetcorn ears.

Farming Advice: Cooking Sweetcorn, Repelling Pet Pests and a Sunflower Playhouse

Seems there's always some sweet corn left on the stalks in the garden at summer's end . . . tough old ears that are no good for boiling or canning. Most people just plow 'em under, but Lucinda Dittmar of LaPorte, Indiana saves every one and uses the kernels to add variety to her family's winter diet.

First, Mrs. Dittmar strips those late-season ears from the stalks and husks them in her back yard. Then, after it has dried for a few days, the corn is shelled and ground in a small grist mill. "Those kernels make the sweetest, nuttiest cornmeal I've ever tasted," says Lucinda. "The flavor of the hot mush and corn bread I whip up with this home-ground meal far surpasses the bland, sandy taste of foods made with the store bought variety."

Later (on cold, frosty winter nights) Lucinda also pours a few ounces of the dry — but unground — kernels into a pan . . . adds just enough oil to coat'em . . . and fries the morsels until they're plump and brown. The Dittmars then sprinkle on a little salt and they've got toasted corn nuts, a fine fireside winter treat!

Mr. and Mrs. Steve Schonefeld of Columbia City, Indiana not only grind the corn they raise . . . they grind the cob too. "It makes great kitty litter," says Mrs. Schonefeld. The granules also can be used as a supplement to potting soil because of the ground corncobs' moisture-absorbent qualities.

Ever try to change a car's oil filter but couldn't find the special wrench that is designed just for that job? Well, Jim Kerr of Buncombe, Illinois never owned an oil-filter wrench in his life . . . and he always changes the filters in his vehicles. Jim just uses a large screwdriver — driven right through the old filters — to twist 'em off. New ones are then put on and firmly tightened down by hand.

mother earth news fair 2018 schedule


Next: September 14-16, 2018
Seven Springs, PA

Whether you want to learn how to grow and raise your own food, build your own root cellar, or create a green dream home, come out and learn everything you need to know — and then some!


Subscribe Today - Pay Now & Save 64% Off the Cover Price

Money-Saving Tips in Every Issue!

Mother Earth NewsAt MOTHER EARTH NEWS, we are dedicated to conserving our planet's natural resources while helping you conserve your financial resources. You'll find tips for slashing heating bills, growing fresh, natural produce at home, and more. That's why we want you to save money and trees by subscribing through our earth-friendly automatic renewal savings plan. By paying with a credit card, you save an additional $5 and get 6 issues of MOTHER EARTH NEWS for only $12.95 (USA only).

You may also use the Bill Me option and pay $17.95 for 6 issues.

Canadian Subscribers - Click Here
International Subscribers - Click Here
Canadian subscriptions: 1 year (includes postage & GST).

Facebook Pinterest Instagram YouTube Twitter flipboard