People look forward to eating fresh, homegrown, sweet corn. Those yellow ears are so delicious. The only drawback to growing corn is the space problem. Corn requires a large amount of space to insure proper pollination. Since corn is wind pollinated, the wind must be able reach between the stalks. The most important aspects of growing corn are correct planting, adequate soil moisture, proper nutrition and harvesting the corn at the right time.
- Pick a spot to plant your corn. Corn is a warm season crop requiring lots of sunshine. The optimum soil temperature is between 65 and 90 degrees Fahrenheit (18 and 32 degrees Celsius), but can be as low as 50 degrees Fahrenheit (10 degrees Celsius).
- Turn over the soil to a depth 6 inches (15.2 centimeters) with a plow or a spade, breaking up any clods.
- Rake the soil flat.
- Put fertilizer on the ground.
- Dig rows of 1-inch (2.5-centimeter) deep furrows and sow the corn 3 to 4 inches (7.6 to 10 centimeters) apart. The rows should be 24 to 32 inches (61 to 81 centimeters) apart.
- Keep the soil moist. You don't have to water corn everyday, only when you feel the soil getting dry.
- Make sure the soil has the proper nutrients. You can buy a testing kit which will help you determine what fertilizer to use.
- Harvest your corn when the ears are completely full and the silk surrounding the kernels is brown and crisp. To check if it's ripe without picking it, pull back the husk a bit and see if the kernels are full and yellow. If the corn's not ripe, leave it a few more days. Pick your corn by pulling the ears down while twisting them. This way the stalk won't break.