Growing sweet corn that reaches its full potential requires plenty of space, abundant sunshine, and rich, moist soil. This page will teach you how to grow sweet corn successfully, the organic way.
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The ground being used to plant sweet corn seeds must be warm enough - at least 60 degrees F (15.6 C) - as it hates the cold. And make sure the area where you plan to plant the corn has been fortified with compost or other organic matter.
Plant corn seed about one inch (2.5 cm) deep and 10 inches (25 cm) apart, in pre-decided blocks of soil where three rows have been arranged. Space the rows about 10 inches (25 cm) apart.
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Many cool-climate gardeners will place a layer of black plastic over the plants (with a hole cut out for the plants to grow) once they are visible. This helps to retain both the heat and the moisture in the soil and will keep garden weeds at bay. In warmer climates, organic mulch will do the trick.
Once the plants are about 6 feet high, mound soil around their bases so the roots stay cool and covered.
You will need to water sweet corn carefully and thoroughly, especially as the summer heat begins to rise. Corn remains happy with an initial application of an organic garden fertilizer for vegetables upon planting and repeated applications each month.
Sweet corn will be mature enough to harvest fifteen to twenty-four days after the silk begins to peek out of the ears of corn. The silk will be dry and brown, the husks will be moist and green and the ears will be plump and release a milky juice if punctured.
To harvest sweet corn, pull and twist the ears from the stalk.
The sooner sweet corn is used, the sweeter it will be. If sweet corn cannot be eaten quickly, in can be stored in the refrigerator uncovered for up to two days with the husks still attached.
Sweet corn may be preserved at the peak of freshness by freezing. Corn should be blanched for four minutes, drained, cooled, and packed into freezer bags or containers, then frozen.
The seed of sweet corn are viable for about 2 years.
The following pests and diseases have been known to affect the success of growing Sweet Corn. For more information about preventing and controlling them, see Organic Garden Pest Control.
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