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Corn, Country Gentleman

Short Description

HEIRLOOM. From 1890, this unusual white corn has irregular rows and great flavor.

Full Description

Country Gentleman is one of the most unusual sweet corns around because its white kernels are arranged irregularly, not in rows. The kernels are also very deep and narrow, hence its alternate name, Shoe-peg. Developed around 1890 in the Connecticut River Valley, it is a much bigger form of a very old variety. In fertile soils, it can yield three ears per stalk, sometimes more. It is a beautiful corn with wonderful texture and flavor. It holds its peak quality much longer than most heirloom corns.
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Item#: 50914A
Order: 1 Pkt. (200 seeds)
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$3.95
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Product properties

Days To Maturity The average number of days from when the plant is actively growing in the garden to the expected time of harvest.

92 days

Fruit Size The average size of the fruit produced by this product.

7-8 inches

Sun The amount of sunlight this product needs daily in order to perform well in the garden. Full sun means 6 hours of direct sun per day; partial sun means 2-4 hours of direct sun per day; shade means little or no direct sun.

Full Sun

Spread The width of the plant at maturity.

12 inches

Height The typical height of this product at maturity.

60-72 inches

Sow Method This refers to whether the seed should be sown early indoors and the seedlings transplanted outside later, or if the seed should be sown directly in the garden at the recommended planting time.

Direct Sow

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Video

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Eating fresh sweet corn is one of the greatest delights of summer. See how easy it is to grow your own.
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Chef Ian Knauer of the Farm Cooking School in Stockton New Jersey Prepares Raw Summer Corn and Basil Salad.
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How to Sow

  • Growing corn is easy provided you have enough space and plenty of sun. Corn is wind-pollinated, so you need to plant in blocks to ensure pollination. You should have a minimum 10 foot by 10 foot area. The exception to this rule is ‘On Deck’ corn, which has been bred to grow in containers. If you are growing ‘On Deck’, choose a container that is at least 24 inches wide and deep and plant nine seeds evenly spaced.
  • Isolate corn varieties when recommended (Sh2s), by planting corn seeds at least 250 feet apart, or select varieties that mature at least 2 weeks apart so they will not cross pollinate.
  • When choosing a site for corn, plant on the north side of your garden so the tall plants do not shade other plants in your vegetable garden.
  • Corn is a warm season crop and should not be planted in cool soils. The non Sh2 varieties tend to be more tolerant of cool soils, but in general the soil should be about 65 degrees F or warmer.
  • Sow corn seed 1 inch deep, 5 to 6 inches apart in rows 2 to 3 feet apart.
  • Seedlings emerge in 7-14 days.
  • When corn seedlings are 3-5 inches tall and healthy, thin to 1 foot apart.

How to Grow

  • Keep weeds under control during the growing season. Weeds compete with plants for water, space and nutrients, so control them by either cultivating often or use a mulch to prevent their seeds from germinating.
  • Keep plants well watered during dry periods to promote uninterrupted growth. Corn needs 1-2 inches of rain per week for best production. Use a rain gauge to check to see if you need to add water. Corn is also a heavy feeder and will benefit from side dressings of fertilizer applied as directed through the growing season.
  • Monitor for pests and diseases. Check with your local Cooperative Extension Service for pest controls recommended for your area.
  • Suckers tend to form at the base of the plants; they help support the stalks and make food for the plant. The stalks may have to be staked in windy areas, but in general they are self-supporting.
  • Sunflowers are good companion plant for corns. Direct sow sunflowers in rows parallel to corn rows to help separate corn varieties that need isolation from each other. Choose sunflower varieties of comparable height to the corn plantings. The sunflower border, with vibrant hues in russets to golden-yellow, will add sparkle next to the almost all-green corn plot. The ‘Three Sisters’ (corn, bean and squash) are traditional companion plantings with Native American gardeners.

Harvest and Preserving Tips

  • Ears of corn are ready to harvest about 17-20 days after the silks appear. The kernels should be firm. Open an ear and pierce a kernel with your fingernail. If the liquid is watery, the corn is not ripe yet. It should be milky. If it is creamy, it is overripe and will not taste as sweet.
  • Firmly grip the ear and twist downward to harvest. Take care not to break the plant when harvesting the first ear, or the second ear will not develop. Most corn produces two ears.
  • Store unhusked corn in the fridge and consume as soon as possible. Sh2 and SE varieties keep the longest in the fridge, up to one week.
  • Corn freezes well after blanching and may also be canned using a pressure cooker. Immature ears may be pickled.
Days To Maturity
92 days
Fruit Size
7-8 inches
Sun
Full Sun
Spread
12 inches
Height
60-72 inches
Sow Method
Direct Sow
Planting Time
Spring
Sow Time
After Last Frost
Thin
9 inches
Life Cycle
Annual
Corn, Country Gentleman is rated 4.25 out of 5 by 4.
Rated 5 out of 5 by from No raccoons! Finally! Found a sweet corn that squirrels and raccoons don't like! Planted it for the first time last year. Some of the back ears had been nibbled on, but that was it. Not as sweet as other hybrids, but the ears were long and the stalks for over 8' tall! I let the stalks dry and used them for fall decorating. Planting again this season.
Date published: 2015-03-28
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Good but difficult in the desert I tried Country Gentleman for the first time this year because I'd read that it's tightly wrapped ears made it hard for earworms to get in. Not true, with the result that even large ears only developed spotty kernels. They had good flavor but unless someone knows a good way to prevent earworms from infesting your crop...well, let's just leave it at I was disappointed. But then so far every corn variety I've tried has disappointed me here in the desert SW. I'm about to give up on sweet corn and try Hopi or Navaho varieties that are usually ground into cornmeal. I tried neem oil drops on the tips of the ears and while it killed the worms the damage was already done. Next year I'll try Golden Bantam and an insecticide.
Date published: 2014-08-15
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Corn is difficult. I am on the 3rd bed. The first two got cutworms and another bug, but I wasn't giving up. The 3rd try I gave in to using chemicals because organics weren't working. So far, 3 feet high, so good. My fingers are crossed. I WANT home grown corn!!!
Date published: 2012-05-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic find! I have been looking for seeds for this corn for it seems like forever!!!! My mom used to grow it all the time when I was little, & I got thoroughly hooked on it. It's crunchy-sweet & just great with a dab of real butter. An easy grower. Raccoons like it, too.
Date published: 2009-05-11
  • 2016-05-28T06:41CST
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