Giant Corn Researcher Attributes Success to WSU Education

From his six mule farming operation in Waterville, Wash. to extensive research in the Mid-West, Philip Wainscott made an impact on the agricultural industry in both production and harvest.

Wainscott graduated from Washington State University with his Bachelor’s in Agriculture, ’41, and continued his education by earning a Master’s of Science in Agronomy from Ohio State University.  While at WSU, Wainscott participated in ROTC and was president of Phi Sigma Kappa, but his love of agriculture really bloomed and was evident in the countless hours he spent in the greenhouse atop Science Hall.

Education provided Wainscott with the tools he needed to begin his work at the Stickley Hybrid Corn Company in Lincoln, Neb. As a researcher, Wainscott helped develop “Genetic Giant” corn by using selective breeding techniques, which involved using paper bags to cover the corn heads to eliminate cross-pollination.

Wainscott returned to Waterville and used his background in research and education to improve the quality and yield of his crops. By looking at the larger picture and trying new techniques for crop production, Wainscott proved it is possible to get 70 bushels an acre with Orville Vogel’s wheat and this in turn contributed to WSU financially.

Wherever his research and farming took him, WSU was always near to Wainscott’s heart. He chose WSU because he couldn’t imagine getting an education any place else. He continued that with his daughters, telling them they could go to any school in the U.S.—as long as it was WSU.

By Desiree Kiliz, Marketing, News, and Educational Communications Intern