Sacred Red Corn Planting Takes a Stand Against KXL

Project: Bridging Nations, Building Strength in Native American Southwest

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The Ponca Trail of Tears and the proposed route of the Keystone XL pipeline are expected to intersect on the land of Mekasi Horinek in South Dakota, of the Lakota nation. Horinek has led an effort to bring back sacred and native plants and, in the process, combat poor health in tribal communities, and take a stand against the Keystone XL. In this way, Horinek, along with his sons, other tribal members and more than 60 volunteers hand planted more than 3.5 acres of corn on a stretch of land in Nebraska.

Together with the sacred red corn, the Alliance also planted Hopi sweet corn (white), and Ponka grey corn (blue) to symbolize the group’s independence and freedom.

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Planting Ponca corn on the Tanderup Farm. Photo by Mary Anne Andrei
Planting Ponca corn on the Tanderup Farm. Photo by Mary Anne Andrei

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