What Is Hydrolyzed Corn Gluten?

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Corn protein used to create corn gluten
Corn protein used to create corn gluten (Image: Image by Flickr.com, courtesy of yomi yomi)

Corn gluten is made up of 60 percent corn protein. It is a byproduct of a process referred to as wet-milling. Enzyme hydrolysis of corn gluten meal creates hydrolyzed corn gluten. Both products are used as environmentally friendly herbicides.

Significance

Corn gluten meal has been used as a natural herbicide that controls or prevents the formation of weed roots.

Advantages

According to Golf Course Management, hydrolyzed corn gluten "proved to be as much as four times more active than corn gluten meal on target weeds" in experiments. Hydrolyzed corn gluten is soluble and, as a result, can be sprayed on the area being treated. Corn gluten meal on the other hand is produced in pellet form.

Type of Weed Control

Corn gluten meal or hydrolyzed corn gluten must be applied to the area before the seed of the targeted weeds emerge from the soil. For this reason it is referred to as a pre-emergent weed killer.

Effects

Hydrolyzed corn gluten is effective against dandelion, plantain, pigweed, crabgrass, lambs quarters, curly dock and many other common lawn and garden weeds yet has no negative effects on the environment, pets or people.

Other Uses

Hydrolyzed corn gluten and corn gluten meal, though used primarily on lawns, can also be used on flower beds and vegetable gardens.

Brands

Corn gluten meal can be found selling as "Concern Weed Prevention Plus," "Corn Glutten/BurnOut Organic Weed Killer & Grass Control Combo" and "Safe 'N Simple Pre-Emergence Weed Control 9-0-0" among others.

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