Photo by Melody

PlantFiles: Teosinte
Zea mexicana

Family: Poaceae (poh-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Zea (ZEE-uh) (Info)
Species: mexicana (meks-sih-KAY-nuh) (Info)

» View all varieties of Corn

2 members have or want this plant for trade.

Ornamental Grasses and Bamboo

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)

6-9 in. (15-22 cm)

Seed Type:
Open Pollinated

Days to Maturity:
more than 120 days

Kernel Color:
Dark Purple/Black

Soil pH requirements:
Unknown - Tell us

Seed Collecting:
Allow seedheads to dry on plants; remove and collect seeds

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to view:

By turtleheart
Thumbnail #1 of Zea mexicana by turtleheart


1 positive
No neutrals
No negatives

Gardeners' Notes:

Positive natureguyfrog On Jul 26, 2011, natureguyfrog from San Diego, CA wrote:

This corn is perennial in behaviour in tropical and subtropical climates. I have had plants come up year after year as long as receive ample water. Easily grown from seed as an annual in long season. Somewhat ornamental with purplish stems, however tends to fall over unless pinched and pruned when young. Purple-red tassels are also ornamental. Seeds are in a double row side by side rather than attached to a "cob". They are angular in shape and smaller than a typical corn seed. I understand that the seeds are delicious popped as one would pop other corns...however I wouldn't expect the same fluffy end product...but a crunchy alternative perhaps comparable to toasted hemp seed (but larger of course).

If kept at bay by selectively and severely cutting back individual culms before they mature can provide a wide-bladed attractive green clump of bamboo like grass as a contrasting foil and filler between other plants.

Very easy to grow as long as given ample water.

Most attractive and productive for seed in full sun.


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

San Diego, California

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