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Latest Teosinte Stories

2012-04-24 23:16:53

A leaf gene active in the maize cob causes leaves to grow in the male and female inflorescences In a variant of maize known as pod corn, or tunicate maize, the maize kernels on the cob are not ℠naked´ but covered by long membranous husks known as glumes. According to scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Plant Breeding Research in Cologne and Friedrich Schiller University in Jena, this variant arises from the activity of a leaf gene in the maize cob that is not usually...

2011-09-26 13:08:46

Corn split off from its closest relative teosinte, a wild Mexican grass, about 10,000 years ago thanks to the breeding efforts of early Mexican farmers. Today it's hard to tell that the two plants were ever close kin: Corn plants stand tall, on a single sturdy stalk, and produce a handful of large, kernel-filled ears. By contrast, teosinte is branchy and bushy, with scores of thumb-sized "ears," each containing only a dozen or so hard-shelled kernels. In seeking to better understand how...

2011-08-03 13:05:01

grassy tillers1 suppresses branching, enabling maize to grow taller when shade encroaches -- a key to teosinte's ancient domestication When an animal gets too hot or too cold, or feels pangs of hunger or thirst, it tends to relocate "“ to where it's cooler or hotter, or to the nearest place where food or water can be found.  But what about vegetative life?  What can a plant do under similar circumstances? Plants can't change the climate and they can't uproot themselves to move...

2009-10-03 12:36:20

Study on maize domestication may help improve crop yields Understanding the evolution and domestication of maize has been a holy grail for many researchers. As one of the most important crops worldwide and as a crop that appears very different from its wild relatives as a result of domestication, understanding exactly how maize has evolved has many practical benefits and may help to improve crop yields. In the October issue of the American Journal of Botany...

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2009-03-24 08:00:00

Probably domesticated in the Mexican tropical forest The earliest physical evidence for domesticated maize, what some cultures call corn, dates to at least 8,700 calendar years ago, and it was probably domesticated by indigenous peoples in the lowland areas of southwestern Mexico, not the highland areas. This new evidence comes from an international team of researchers, who report the findings in two companion papers in this week's Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. They place...

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2005-07-24 18:40:00

In 1909, while harvesting a typical corn crop (Zea mays) in Illinois, a field worker noticed a plant so unusual that it was initially believed to be a new species. Its "peculiarly shaped ear" was "laid aside as a curiosity" and the specimen was designated Zea ramosa (from the Latin ramosus, "having many branches"). Due to the alteration of a single gene, later named ramosa1, both the ear and the tassel of the plant were more highly branched than usual, leading to loose, crooked kernel rows...


Latest Teosinte Reference Libraries

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2005-09-08 09:32:38

The larva of the moth Helicoverpa zea is a major agricultural pest for cotton (where it is known as the cotton bollworm), corn (where it is known as the corn earworm), tomatoes (where it is the tomato fruitworm), and many other crops. The adult moth, pictured here is a pollinator. It is very cosmopolitan in what plants it will use as larval food.

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Word of the Day
pungle
  • To take pains; labor assiduously with little progress.
This word comes from the Spanish 'pongale,' put it.
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