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All About Corn


Corn is extremely easy to grow provided you have enough space. You will need a minimum 10-foot by 10-foot area to ensure proper pollination. The larger your garden, the better and more uniform your corn harvest will be.


Corn is one of the oldest known cultivated vegetables dating back almost 10,000 years. We are all familiar with the American Indians reliance on corn known as maize. Thomas Jefferson experimented with many types of corn at Monticello.


Corn is best planted as seed directly in the garden after all danger of frost has passed and after the spring soil has warmed.


Corn needs plenty of water and is helped by a dressing of mulch to keep roots from drying out.

Sow corn seed 5 to 6 inches apart in rows 2 to 3 feet apart. When seedlings are healthy, thin to 1-foot apart. Corn is a rapid growing vegetable and needs to be fed and watered to reach its full size. 1 to 2 inches a water weekly is required.


Pests and diseases are rarely a problem in a corn patch. Bugs and worms which enter the husks through the silk are usually only present at the upper kernels and can be cut off when harvested.
The ears are ready to harvest about 20 days after the silks appear. The corn kernels should be firm and milky when cut open.


Standard corn can be stored for up to 3 days in your refrigerator. Newer hybrids will keep their full flavor for up to 2 weeks. Fresh corn is delicious eaten right off the cob in the garden. Try it grilled, boiled, or steamed.
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Read the next Article: All About Cantaloupe

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Gardening Tip of the Day

  • Potting healthy plants in dirty containers invites disease pathogens. Scrub used pots inside and outside with a soft brush using a solution of mild dish washing detergent and warm water. Place small plastic pots on the top shelf of the dishwasher for an even more thorough cleaning. Remove the crusty residues from fertilizer salts by wetting them with vinegar and scrubbing with a stiff brush.

    To clean stained and moldy terra-cotta pots simply soak them in a solution of 1 part household bleach to 9 parts water for a few minutes. Air-dry and rinse in clean water.
    To clean pots containing plants, cover the plant with a paper or plastic bag. Spray the bleach solution on outer pot surfaces rather than dipping it. Allow to dry and then rinse. Scrub stubborn spots gently with a vegetable brush while rinsing.