Anyone remotely aware of the organic gardening movement knows that the biggest challenges come with battling insects, weeds, and fungus. Horticultural corn meal, promoted for years by organic gardening gurus, is now gaining acceptance in mainstream agricultural circles as an effective fungicide.
Horticultural cornmeal is whole ground corn. Grocery store cornmeal only contains the starchy inner core. Cornmeal works in the soil by attracting a beneficial fungus which then attacks the harmful fungi. Once it has done its work, horticultural cornmeal will break down and provide a mild fertilizer. What could be better?
When applied at a rate of 2-4 pounds per 100 sq. feet, it will work nicely in your lawn or garden. I used it recently to combat a fungus in my shrubs. I simply spread out the cornmeal and within a week the fungus was drastically reduced and new growth looked untouched.
Don’t confuse corn meal with corn gluten meal, which is a by-product of processing corn to make cornstarch and corn syrup. Corn gluten meal is an effective pre-emergent weed suppressor for lawns (best spread around September). The corn gluten granules prevent weed seeds from germination. Then the granules break down and provide a nitrogen fertilizer.