Corn Mother’s Gifts

Corn has always been a central part of me and my family’s life. Growing up on a farm in the Sierra Nevada Foothills of CA, we have always grown a couple of different varieties of heirloom corn every season. Some of my favorite varieties are Strawberry Popcorn, Mohawk Red Bread Flour Corn, Navajo Robins Egg Flour Corn and Seneca Calico Flint Corn.  

Strawberry Popcorn
Mohawk Red Bread Flour Corn
Seneca Calico Flint Corn
Navajo Robins Egg Flour Corn

Did you know that corn comes in six different types! Here is a diagram that shows you all the different types!


Dent Corn is usually used for animal feed.

Sweet Corn is the corn that you use for corn on the cob

Flint Corn is the corn used for making Polenta, Grits and even Hominy.

Popcorn is used for making Popcorn.

Flour Corn is used to make Corn Tortillas, Corn Meal, Hominy, etc.

Pod Corn is used as Ceremonial Corn.

On the Recipes page you will find recipes using traditional indigenous corns!

Corn is a crop that is indigenous to the Americas, and is one of many contributions that indigenous peoples have made to the larger global community. There are thousands of different varieties of corn grown now all over the world.  Each one of those corn varieties comes from a unique cultural tradition, and shows the diversity of indigenous peoples of the Americas.

As a young Mohawk woman corn is a large part of our culture and tradition. Through a season of growing corn I have learned so much about my responsibilities as a Mohawk person. In our Haudensaunee (Iroquois) creation story, it is told to us that our life sustaining crops of corn, beans and squash were given to us to sustain us as a gift from Sky Woman’s daughter. It is our responsibility to care for these sacred foods because they care for us every day.  If you want to learn more about our creation story check out this video.

I invite you to grow corn and see what blessings Corn Mother has for you!

5 thoughts on “Corn Mother’s Gifts

  1. Thank you so much for sharing this information. When I lived with the A:shiwi people (Zuni) I really enjoyed their blue and maroon colored corns.


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