During Thanksgiving, people must have spent some time looking at decorations involving multicolored ears of corn, because I got several questions all essentially asking, What is up with that? How does a single ear can have many different colors on it, while you never see, for example, a single plant producing yellow, red and purple tomatoes? How does corn pull it off?
As a gardener, and enthusiastic backyard plant breeder, I think this is one of the most fun things about corn. You get a little preview of the next generation before you plant the seed. Buy a mixed packet of petunia seeds and they'll all look the same, you have to plant them to find out what color they are. But when I buy different mixes of colored corn, I get to spend a very happy time sorting through them, picking out the colors I like best, so that when I plant them I get a customized mix of colors I like best.
Have a question? Get a sciency answer! Just e-mail me: engeizuki at gmail dot com