"hodgepodge, a confused mix," 1630s, from Latin farrago "medley, mixed fodder, mix of grains for animal feed," from far "grain" (see farina).
"grain," Old English corn "single seed of a cereal plant; seeds of cereal plants generally; plants which produce corn when growing in the field," from Proto-Germanic *kurnam "small seed" (source also of Old Frisian and Old Saxon korn "grain," Middle Dutch coren, German Korn, Old Norse korn, Gothic kaurn), from PIE root *gre-no- "grain."
The sense of the Old English word was "grain with the seed still in" (as in barleycorn) rather than a particular plant. Locally understood to denote the leading crop of a district. It has been restricted to the indigenous "maize" in America (c. 1600, originally Indian corn, but the adjective was dropped), usually "wheat" in England, "oats" in Scotland and Ireland, while Korn means "rye" in parts of Germany.
Maize was introduced to China by 1550, it thrived where rice did not grow well and was a significant factor in the 18th century population boom there. Corn-starch is from 1850. Corn-silk is attested from 1852.
1707, "dust, powdery substance," from Latin farina "ground wheat, flour, meal," from far (genitive farris) "husked wheat, emmer; grain, flour," from Proto-Italic *fars "flour," from PIE *bhars-, with cognates in Old Irish bairgen "bread, loaf," Welsh bara "bread," Serbo-Croatian brašno "flour, food," Latvian bariba "food," Gothic barizeins "from barley," Old Norse barr "grain," Old English bere "barley;" according to de Vaan perhaps a loan-word from a non-IE language.