BONNERS FERRY — Bonners Ferry residents may have seen Jim Cadnum carrying bags of corn downtown or maybe even spotted his truck at Car Quest selling the golden ears, earning him the nickname “Corn Man.”
Cadnum has been a resident of Boundary County for about 30 years.
“I grew up in Ohio on a farm and my dad used to grow corn, so that is where I learned how to do it,” said Cadnum. “I learned how to have multiple plantings. There are multiple varieties, so the first planting is of an early variety, and about two days later, I plant the later variety called Montauk.”
He lucked out with his neighbors, trading road access for four acres of farmable land that he has since utilized, growing and selling corn. He also grows large decorative pumpkins and other rotating crops to keep the soil in good condition.
With the land, came the introduction of a well for watering the crops. Cadnum has utilized the well and integrated a watering system throughout his farmland in order to keep the plants properly hydrated. Working the ground and crops on a rotating scale not only keeps the soil healthy for crops, but provides an abundance of his produce for people to enjoy.
At the end of the harvest season, one may see bundles of corn stalks and pumpkins decorating businesses around town. Cadnum delivers not just corn to residents and businesses, he assists with decorating them as well.
“I go into town on Tuesdays, and then I go to Sandpoint. I deliver everywhere,” said Cadnum. “It can be a pain doing that though, because I never know for sure how much corn to take, and I want to pick it fresh.”
Cadnum frequently visits the Sandpoint Farmers Market, and has plans to bring the late season crops down there to offload.
Selling roughly 2,500 dozen ears of corn a season, Cadnum continues to encourage buying local produce and products, not only for personal benefit, but for the benefit of the community as a whole. When community members shop locally, they not only help fellow residents and their businesses, but are graced with the knowledge of the origin of the products that are purchased.
“I really appreciate all my customers. If I didn’t have my customers, I wouldn’t have a reason to grow corn,” said Cadnum. “Some of the people that buy from me have been buying for over 20 years.”
Residents may see Cadnum, also nicknamed “Bird,” on the streets of Bonners Ferry next summer carrying bundles of corn as he delivers them to buyers.
To contact Jim Cadnum, call 208-217-1478.