Who says watching corn grow isn’t fun?

Green thumbs across Iowa have been doing just that all summer as they pamper the cornstalks they’re growing in the “Edward Jones Tall Corn Contest” in Our Iowa magazine.

Last spring, the magazine mailed 50,000 packets of seed corn to subscribers along with the April/May issue...to see who could grow the tallest cornstalk in the Tall Corn State. The winner will stalk off with a bushel basket of prizes worth $500.00.

“This wasn’t just any seed corn,” says editor Jerry Wiebel. “We imported some tropical varieties from Mexico and Brazil. Because of daylight differences between Iowa and near the equator where it’s normally grown, this stuff can grow 15 feet tall--maybe even taller--in our growing conditions.”

The contest wasn’t restricted to subscribers of the magazine. “As the exclusive sponsors, participating Edward Jones financial advisors in Iowa also received some of the super seed,” Wiebel continues. “They passed it out to anyone who requested it. That explains the towering tassels you might be seeing around town.”

October 1 Deadline

The deadline for entering the Tall Corn Contest is October 1, 2009. As participating sponsors, Edward Jones Financial Advisors: Dennis Brass, Scott Van Tasell, and John Krogstad will serve as the “Official Measurers” for this area. Call Dennis at 641-628-9038 or Scott and John at 641-628-1552 before October 1 to arrange to have your cornstalk measured.

“We’ll cut it off at ground level, s-t-r-e-t-c-h it out on the driveway and measure it from the base to the topmost tip,” explains Brass. “We’ll then report the measurement to Our Iowa, and the winner will be announced in its Dec/Jan issue.”

The “King Kong of Corn Growers” will receive a bushel basket of prizes grown with Iowa Corn: a certificate for $200 of beef from the Iowa Beef Industry Council, a certificate for $200 of pork from the Iowa Pork Producers, and a $100 gasoline card.

Coke, Beer, and Miracle Gro!

“We’ve received a bumper crop of letters from readers telling how they’re growing their cornstalks,” note Wiebel. “One reader reports fertilizing with a combination of Coca-Cola, beer, and Miracle-Gro to vie for the top tassel. Several others watered their plants with skim milk. The reason:

Milk is a good source of phosphorus, which is essential for plant growth, and calcium, which helps maintain proper soil pH.”

It’s obvious that Iowans have fertile minds when it comes to growing corn. And one of them is going to be grinning ear-to-ear when the winner of the Tall Corn Contest is announced.

Edward Jones provides financial services for individual investors in the United States, and through its affiliates, in Canada and the United Kingdom. Every aspect of the firm’s business, from the types of investment options offered to the location of branch offices, is designed to cater to individual investors in the communities in which they live and work. The firm’s 12,000-plus financial advisors work directly with more than 8 million clients to understand their personal goals--from college savings to retirement--and create long-term investment solutions that emphasize a well balanced portfolio and a buy-and-hold strategy. Edward Jones embraces the importance of building long-term, face-to-face relationships with clients, helping them to understand and make sense of investment options available today.

Edward Jones, which ranked No. 2 on FORTUNE magazine’s “100 Best Companies to Work for 2009,” is headquartered in St. Louis. The Edward Jones interactive website is located at http://www.edwardjones.com/, and its recruiting website is http://www.careers.edwardjones.com/. Member SIPC.

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