Corn (Zea mays) seeds are alive, but not active. The seeds are in a state of dormancy that remain viable for several years. Once water reaches the seed, germination is started and the corn seed becomes active again.
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Marie Notnats enjoys learning about new topics and teaching people new skills. She has been writing professionally since 2008. She is a professional horticulturist with a Bachelor of Science degree in horticulture from Brigham Young University. She writes for About.com, Examiner.com, eHow, and assorted gardening blogs.