Maize News Letter 25: 17-18 (1951)
The Standard Exotics (Maize)
Edgar Anderson and William L. Brown

The chief project of the maize laboratory at the Missouri Botanical Garden for the past ten years has been to work at the problem of a natural classification for Zea Mays. We have attempted to study the maize of the world, living and prehistoric, and on the basis of comparative morphology, to work out as many types and sub types as we could recognize. For Eastern North America the problem is virtually completed, and for Latin America as a whole it is further advanced than we would have dared to hope ten years ago, largely because a number of other individuals and institutions have taken an ever increasing interest in such surveys.

One of the by products of this project is the set of peculiar varieties which we have named the "standard exotics." These are ten varieties of maize which, of the sorts which can fairly readily be grown in the U.S. Cornbelt, come closest to demonstrating the extremes of variation in Zea Mays. Believing that they may ultimately be of wide usefulness in some practical problems as well as in many theoretical investigations, we are increasing our seed stocks of these ten varieties and putting them into cold storage. As long as the supply lasts, they will be available to maize geneticists and maize breeders upon request. Since the main seed stock is being held in Des Moines, requests for seeds should ordinarily be addressed to Dr. Brown. Ultimately, we hope to publish a sort of atlas, illustrating the plant type, kernel type, ear type, and cytological peculiarities of these ten varieties. In anticipation of this publication, we will appreciate any genetical or cytological information which any of those who grow the varieties may be able to supply. Several of the varieties have already been turned over to various investigators. They should ultimately be an important source of materials for a cooperative attack upon the genetics of quantitative characters.