Dried cornstalks serve as a staple of autumn decor, either used on their own or paired with other sights of the season. Cornstalk decorations may last the entire season, offering an affordable means of creating your own decor for indoors or out. When selecting cornstalks, inspect them carefully first to ensure no insects are hiding within them. Cornstalks may be available from a local farm, farmer's market, garden center or craft store.
Gather cornstalks vertically, aligning them in the way they are found in nature, to wrap completely around outdoor columns. Tie jute around the stalks in several locations to hold up the stalks; then bend the tops of the stalks down a bit to add dimension. Tuck or tie colorful autumn leaves into the display in random areas. Use twist-ties or twine to secure the leaves if they do not stay in on their own. Several ears of Indian corn dress up the stalks, if desired; tie jute around the husks where the husk and ear meet, and tie those jute loops to the jute securing the stalks on the columns.
Cut cornstalk leaves into pieces 6 to 10 inches long using scissors, or use entire cornstalk leaves by pulling them off the stalks. Stick the leaves onto a foam wreath form, securing them with stickpins or a hot glue gun, covering the entire form. Hang the wreath on a door, or use it as a base for a centerpiece by placing a bowl of seasonal fruits or gourds atop it.
Line the insides of a planter or window box with bits of cornstalks so the leaves stick up around the inside perimeter. Use a planter already full of dirt to cut down on the amount of stalks needed. Place a pumpkin or small seasonal gourds atop the dirt for a festive seasonal display.
Cut bits of cornstalk leaves to the approximate height of a glass candleholder. Tie the leaves around the holder with bits of jute. Use a battery-operated LED candle inside the candleholder, for safety. Display the candleholder on a dining table, or create several for a display for a long table. The candle display is safe for both indoor and outdoor use.
Indian corn added to outdoor cornstalk decorations benefits birds and wildlife that enjoy it as a tasty treat. Bags of dried corn still on the cob are available at some pet stores.
Wrap lampposts with cornstalks to give them an instant autumn makeover. Add a few large pumpkins or gourds around them to complete the display.
Avoid using real candles near cornstalks, as dry cornstalks can catch fire.