Im wondering about the corn meal I keep reading about in alot of posts? is this every day cornmeal you can find at the grocery store? what exactly is it used for?
Yes, but it's really expensive at the store because of the smaller quantity and because it's very fine-ground and certified as fit for human consumption and all that.
It's far cheaper to get it at a grain mill near you, and you can get the amount you need in larger bags. I think the rate is 10-20 lbs/thousand square feet, but if I'm wrong somebody will correct me.
People use it as an organic feed for their lawn. Also, a lot of people here report it helps control fungal diseases. I've never used it, so I can't make a comment on either.
If you just need to spot-treat a diseased area or two, the stuff from the grocery store is fine. You won't need a large quantity to do that, and with gas prices the trip to the mill may be more expensive than it's worth if you don't need that much.
You might also try cracked corn. It goes through a spreader MUCH more easily. I paid $7.00 for a 50lb bag at the Tractor Supply near me
Horticultural corn meal is excellent for fungal lawn problems and algea spores in smaller bodies of water such as a farm pond. Cracked corn is bird food.
Corm meal is just very finely ground corn. Cracked corn is just that, corn that has been cracked into smaller pieces. I agree if you already have a fungus problem corn meal will attack it more quickly but if you just want an organic fertilizer that can be used to help prevent a fungal attack cracked corn is just as good.
Corn gluten meal is 60% protein that translates to 9% nitrogen. Don't mean to make an issue of it but cracked corn has no fertilizer value and it lacks the fungal/algea control that horticultural corn meal has.
"cracked corn has no fertilizer value"
Can you explain this for me? I thought that any grains had some value as fertilizer, and that the higher the protein level, the higher the N content. So cracked corn should have the same fertilizer value as cornmeal.
I don't know that much about the fungal control provided by cornmeal, but I also don't understand why it would be less if the corn is less finely ground.
I'm not trying to challenge what you're saying. I'm just trying to understand.
IMO,the finer the product is ground the quicker it can be absorbed into the soil/water to do its work. The initial work on the benefits or cornmeal was performed at the Texas A&M Research Station at Stephenville, Texas. It was found that cornmeal was effective at killing algae spores in the waters of fish farms. Later it was found to also be effective in controlling a fungal disease that can effect peanut crops. Garden gurus such as Howard Garrett found it to be effective in controlling brown patch in St.Augustine turf grass.
Corn gluten meal is a different product. It is the byproduct of the wet milling of corn to extract oil and syrup. The resultant "dregs" was used as catttle feed along with cracked corn for years. Some years ago Iowa State University researchers discovered that CGM contained an element that prevented seeds from germinating. ISU patented the weed seed germination preventing qualities of CGM. To this day, any company packaging CGM as a preemergent weed control must pay ISU royalties. Most mills simply package it as feed to get around this. As I said earlier, CGM is 60% protien so it is a very effective fertilizer with 9% nitrogen.
Cracked corn can be absorbed by the soil to the benefit of microbes in the soil. Beyond that, IMO, it does not contain the protein value to be effective as a fertilizer. There are various products such as soy bean meal, contton seed husks,alfalfa, etc., that do contain enough protein to give them fertilizing value. Generally speaking, it requires some pretty large quantaties of these products to achieve the desired effects. As an example, corn gluten meal is usually spread at 20# per 1,000 sq. ft. of area.
Hope this is informative.