VERY LIMITED SUPPLY
We believe Baker Creek Seeds is the only place outside of Peru where you can buy this seed! Patrick Simcox found the rare “Puka Chullpi Sara” corn in a small village in the Sacred Valley region of Southern Peru. This “red form” of Chullpi corn is seldom seen anymore, so this is a privilege for Baker Creek Seeds to make it available!
This ancient variety has undergone little change in the last 1000 years. It is believed the Incas grew it extensively and expanded its cultivation into the furthest boundaries of the Incan empire. Chullpi corn seems to have been one of the earlier derivatives of the most primitive corns of Peru – “Confite Morocho & Proto Kculli.” These date back to 4,000 to 6,000 years ago. Puka Chullpi Red Corn was one of the first cultivated of these prehistoric Peruvian corn races. (Just a bit of corn history so we understand and appreciate a little more how these varieties actually came into being). Persistence paid off and Patrick was finally able to track down just enough of this very rare and ancient red chullpi corn to whet the appetites of corn junkies.
These Peruvian corns are daylight sensitive, being from the Andean region of Southern Peru (the length of the days are shorter) and are grown at high altitudes (2,300 to 3,300 meters above see level) and this variety needs up to 180+ days to reach maturity. When growing this variety, please remember that these Peruvian “Kings of the Corn World” are adapted to cool subtropical conditions year round and won’t take well to extreme heat or freezing cold spells.
Because this corn is day-length sensitive, the long day length in much of the USA could pose the biggest challenge for growers. The Peruvian types usually won’t tassel until the sunlight is down to 12 hours per day, which normally occurs in the northern hemisphere around the 21st of September. If you are able to get it to tassel, be ready to assist with pollination. Artificial shading might be a temporary solution until we are able to acclimatize them to northern latitudes. However, there has been some success with Peruvian corn in the Pacific Northwest, as well as other coastal, cooler or higher altitude areas. Hawaii could also prove to be a suitable climate for this variety. Growing the corn in large climate-controlled greenhouses may also prove successful. Please SAVE and SHARE your seeds as well as you gardening techniques if you are successful at getting a crop!
These sweet, long, wrinkled corn kernels are usually toasted and make a delightful and healthy snack that is called “cancha” in Peru. It can also be ground into flour and used in most corn recipes. This ancient form can develop into fat, egg-shaped, or nearly round ears! Seed Savers, Seed Artists, and Gardeners will fight over our very limited supply. We wish we had more of this variety to offer.