Plant of the Month - July - Maize

1st July, 2020

Artist

Chloe Baldwin - Buttercrumble

Buttercrumble is a creative communications studio formed by twin sisters, Chloe and Abigail Baldwin. We are the only Yorkshire-born, twin-founded studio building creative brands for fun-finders and beauty-seekers. Our team’s personal touches and “can-do” attitude has enabled us to collaborate with many playful and like-minded brands across the globe.

We achieve all of this from our base in Leeds, West Yorkshire, England.

Twitter: @buttercrumble
Instagram: @buttercrumblecreative

Why did we pick it?

Maize (called corn in some countries) is Zea mays, a member of the grass family Poaceae. It is a cereal grain and is now the third most important cereal crop in the world. However, little of this maize is eaten directly by humans. Most is used to make corn ethanol, animal feed and other maize products, such as corn starch and corn syrup.

Maize has been a fruitful model organism for research in genetics for many years: see Barbara McClintock. Research has shown that artificial selection developed maize from a Mexican plant called Teosinte.

Maize extras

International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center
www.bbsrc.ac.uk/links/cimmyt
http //www cimmyt org

Sweet route to greater yields
www.bbsrc.ac.uk/news/food-security/2018/180209-pr-sweet-route-to-greater-yields

New wheat variety to boost UK whisky production
www.bbsrc.ac.uk/research/impact/new-wheat-variety-boost-uk-whisky-production
Extract viscosity leads to increased cleaning costs and down time for whisky distillers who will sometimes choose imported maize which doesn’t

Crop-raiding elephants stopped by beehive fencing
esrc.ukri.org/news-events-and-publications/impact-case-studies/crop-raiding-elephants-stopped-by-beehive-fencing

Natural seed treatment could drastically cut pesticide use
nerc.ukri.org/planetearth/stories/428

El Niño threatens food crop yields
nerc.ukri.org/planetearth/stories/1688

Plant remains link farming to landscape damage in Peru
nerc.ukri.org/planetearth/stories/1040

Climate change exacerbates European hay fever risk
nerc.ukri.org/planetearth/stories/1630

Boost for addressing challenges in global agriculture and food systems sustainability
nerc.ukri.org/press/releases/2017/18-gcrf
Researchers are working to demonstrate the potential for variation between maize genotypes to influence the rhizosphere microbiome for function