Having fresh vegetables from your garden is not only pleasant, but also good for your health. Growing corn will benefit not only your physical but also your mental condition. With a little understanding of growing corn and a little time, you can start growing your own corn garden and reap the benefits.
Method 1 of 3: Choose a Corn Variety
Step 1. Explore the area where you are going to grow corn
To make the necessary preparations for each corn variety, you need to know about the climate and soil type. Some varieties prefer warm or cool soil and varying levels of soil acidity.
Step 2. Learn how to plant sweet corn
Sweet corn is the most common corn variety; it is eaten boiled or from a tin can. This variety is known for its golden yellow grains and sweet flavor. In the home garden, this particular corn variety is most often grown.
- Regular sweet corn (marked with the letters “su” on the seed package) is the softest of all sweet corn varieties. More than 50% of the sugar in regular sweet corn turns into starch within 24 hours of harvest, so corn should be eaten immediately or preserved.
- High sugar sweet corn (marked with the letters "se" on the seed package) is a genetically modified corn variety that slows down the conversion of sugar into starch and increases the sweetness and tenderness of the kernels themselves.
- Super sweet corn (marked with the letters “sh2” on the seed package) is the sweetest variety of corn. Its grains are slightly smaller than other varieties and wither when dry.
Step 3. Serrated corn
Toothed or field corn is usually eaten raw. It is most commonly grown for animal feed or in the preparation of processed foods. Toothed corn is beneficial to grow if you own a farm or to sell to other farmers.
Step 4. Understand your main flint corn variety
Flint corn or maize is known for having very hard and colorful grains. Its area of application is the same as that of dent corn, but most often it is grown by residents of Central and South America. It is often used for decorative purposes.
Method 2 of 3: Prepare your vegetable garden
Step 1. Plant your corn on time
Depending on your region, seeds should be planted at different times. Corn is usually best planted between May and June. Be careful planting corn too early, as the ground may still be too cold and the seeds may rot.
Step 2. Choose a landing site
Corn needs a lot of sun, so choose an open area of your vegetable garden. Choose an area that has the least amount of weeds, as corn does not do well around them.
Step 3. Prepare the soil
Corn prefers a well-fertilized soil with high nitrogen levels.
- If possible, plant corn in soil that has already had beans or peas, as these add more nitrogen to the soil.
- Check that the ground temperature is around 15 degrees Celsius. If the ground is not warm enough, you can help increase the temperature by covering the ground with black plastic and making holes for the corn to grow through.
- Fertilize the soil with compost or fertilizer 2-4 weeks before planting the corn so that the fertilizer has enough time to mix with the soil.
Method 3 of 3: Grow Your Corn
Step 1. Plant corn
One person should plant 10 to 15 seedlings. If each plant can be grown 100%, it should give two ears.
- Corn is pollinated downwind, so it is best to plant it in blocks rather than separate rows so that the pollen has a better chance of germinating.
- Plant the seeds in the ground 2.5-5 cm deep and 60-90 cm apart.
- To increase the chances of the seeds sprouting, plant 2-3 seeds together.
- If you grow multiple varieties of corn, be sure to plant them in different areas of your garden to reduce the risk of cross-pollination. When cross-pollinated, the corn will grow with hard, starchy kernels.
Step 2. Water the corn
Corn needs about 2.5 cm of water per week, and light watering can lead to the growth of ears without a lot of grains. Do not water the top of the corn as this can wash away the pollen.
Step 3. Wait
As the saying goes, "patience is a virtue", and by the beginning of July your corn should be 30-40 cm tall. The corn will stop growing after about three weeks, after it has developed "tassels" - a dry, brown, silky tail at the top of the ears.
Step 4. Harvest your corn crop and enjoy the flavor
Corn can be harvested when the kernels are snug against each other and a milky liquid will flow from them if pierced. Corn is best eaten right after harvest. So it will be the freshest and most delicious.
- If you want sweet corn (vegetable), be careful not to pick it too late, or it may turn into maize (ripe corn). This is not entirely bad as it can be ground into flour and used to grow corn next season.
- If you can, pick corn only when you want to use it, or use it immediately after picking it. The fresher the corn, the tastier it is.