Cornmeal has become one of the staple products that I talk about every day as I’m sure you know but it is confusing. The confusion comes in because there is grocery store cornmeal, horticultural cornmeal, whole ground cornmeal and corn gluten meal.
The research on cornmeal was done by the Texas A&M Research Station in Stephenville. Dr. Joe McFarland headed that work before his retirement. The discovery of cornmeal’s fungal disease control came about by noticing the peanut crops. Under research observation at the research center these crops didn’t have fungal diseases when they followed the corn planting in rotation. Lab tests related to that later discovered the beneficial organisms in cornmeal were as effective or more than chemical fungicides at shutting down fungal diseases. That’s why we now recommend it for use on brown patch in St. Augustine grass, damping off in seedlings, black spot on roses and many other fungal diseases. Dr. Nick Christian’s stuff at Iowa State University discovered the use of corn gluten meal for use as a natural weed and feed. Time to put it out right now before weed seed germination, at 15-20 lbs. per 1,000 square feet.