Corn Blight Update


Is wild corn

the answer?

Some scientists say this is very likely. Teosinte is a wild relative of modern corn which grows in isolated regions of Mexico and Guatemala.

Unlike the large ears found in the sweet corn familiar to most of us, the ears of teosinte look strange indeed, with only a few large kernels on a tiny cob. So what's the all the fuss about? If modern corn has been so improved, what is the fascination with this wild relative?

One species of teosinte can be bred with modern corn. This species may be resistant to some of the diseases that worry the farming community. As a source of new genes, teosinte is invaluable. For several of our important crops, like potatoes, tomatoes and wheat, there are wild relatives that are being used to improve the commercial varieties.

Scientists are trying to locate Teosinte that have resistance to southern leaf corn blight.


Special Link to Classroom Activities


Web Sites

New evidence for corn's ancestry

Southern Corn Leaf Blight Symptoms on Corn

The First Genetically Engineered Plant

Nature of Corn

A search engine for the Corn Growers Guidebook.

Diseases management by crop

INDEX: Articles about various plant diseases

National Corn Handbook (check out nos. 4 and 10)

The Maize Page

How Corn Grows #corngrows

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