This robust, erect annual grass grows to 12 ft (3.5 m) tall and has
arching, lance-shaped, waxy leaves.
It produces terminal panicles of male racemes to 8 in (20 cm) in
length, and female inflorescences of the same length.
The flowers are followed by cobs with usually yellow, sweet, edible
Golden Beauty is a much-admired cultivar.
Cultivation: Grow in full sun in fertile, moist, well-drained soil.
Propagate from seed .
They may be prone to aphids.
This genus consists of 4 species of annual and, rarely, perennial
grasses from Central America. They bear terminal male panicles with
solitary ‘ears’; the female inflorescences have numerous spikelets
in rows on a thick axis.
The female flowers have a long silky style enclosed within a husk;
these are followed by a cob of fleshy kernels.
There are ornamental cultivars as well as the cereal crops; these
are grown for their variegated leaves and multicolored cobs.