The Accidental Smallholder Forum

Growing => Vegetables => Topic started by: ellied on September 29, 2010, 09:17:16 pm

Title: Sweetcorn?
Post by: ellied on September 29, 2010, 09:17:16 pm
This is the first year I've grown sweetcorn and I have quite a few cobs there and the end bits seem to have turned brown so I thought they'd be ready which is good as it's getting quite cold now..  Only the corn inside was only partly developed and not edible so I left it out for the birds ::)

The rest are still on the plants but I'm not sure whether it's worth leaving them in hopes of maturing or whether to just pick the rest, check they're all inedible and provide a feast for the local birdlife?  Any thoughts?

Is there anything else I could/should have done to get something I could actually use?  I'd like to try again but even 2 rows was quite space consuming if they aren't producing anything useful ::)
Title: Re: Sweetcorn?
Post by: Fleecewife on September 30, 2010, 12:01:23 am
My sweetcorn wasn't great this year either - I'd grown lots but probably got fewer cobs than if I hadn't grown quite so many plants.
First thing is to grow them in blocks rather than rows, for good pollination.  They like plenty of manure and compost dug in for fertility and water retention, then they like lots of water, but well drained soil.  I think mine didn't get quite enough water.  If you grew yours outdoors and you had the rainy season we have, then it could have been too cold for them.
But next year is a new opportunity - better luck then.
Title: Re: Sweetcorn?
Post by: OhLaLa on September 30, 2010, 07:27:25 pm
My sweetcorn worked really well this year, huge fat juicy cobs and loads of them.

My tips:

Always plant in blocks, not rows.
Always put LOADS of well rotted manure into the soil before planting. Sweetcorn is a hungry plant.
Keep them watered in dry periods.
When the plant flowers give them a gentle shake to distribute the pollen.

If yours didn't do so good, change the variety next year.

And the old saying is: Walk slowly to pick and walk fast to cook (or something to like that).

I picked most of mine a couple of weeks ago, those that I thought not quite fat enough are still in the veg patch so need my attention...


Title: Re: Sweetcorn?
Post by: Cinderhills on September 30, 2010, 08:02:23 pm
Great tips OhLaLa.  I did all but planting in blocks and they came to nothing.  I agree with ellied about them taking room then they don't grow properly.  It seems a waste.

Next year can I plant in the same bed or should I try another in case something was wrong with the one I used this year?
Title: Re: Sweetcorn?
Post by: OhLaLa on October 01, 2010, 12:07:33 pm
I always replant mine in another part of the veg garden. Sweetcorn is a hungry plant and takes a lot of nutrient from the soil so they do much better if planted elsewhere the following year. I'm lucky enough to have a well rotted muck heap and for about 60 plants I used about 4 wheelbarrows of muck which was rotovated in (elsewhere our soil is solid in the summer and sticky mud in the winter).

If they aren't planted in blocks they don't fertilise well, so I think that would have been the problem if they didn't do so good.


Title: Re: Sweetcorn?
Post by: Cinderhills on October 01, 2010, 07:28:11 pm
Thanks OhLaLa.  Will do that.