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Corn Growing Information
Corn is a warm-season annual that is best planted after the soil temperature reaches (16°C) – Around November in Tasmania, usually two or three weeks after the last frost in spring. Corn planted in cold, wet soil is unlikely to germinate.
- Corn grows best in air temperatures from 16-35°C.
- Corn can take from 60 to 100 days to reach harvest depending upon variety and the amount of heat during the growing season.
Start corn indoors 2 to 3 weeks before the last frost in spring for transplanting 2 to 3 weeks after the last frost. If your season is long enough, plant successive crops every two to three weeks.
Sow corn 2.5cm deep. Plant seeds 5-10cm apart in short, side-by-side rows to form a block, rather than one long row. You can also grow several plants on mounds or inverted hills. Planting in a block or clump will help ensure pollination. Thin plants from 30-45cm apart for short varieties and 45-60cm apart for tall varieties once plants are 10-15cm tall. Corn planted too closely will require more water and fertilizer and may offer a smaller yield. For a continuous harvest, succession plant corn every two weeks or plant early, midseason, and late varieties at the same time.
Water and Feeding Corn. Keep corn evenly moist and regularly watered. Corn grows fast in hot weather and requires an even supply of moisture to avoid wilting. Avoid overhead watering particularly when tassels appear; water hitting the tassels at the time of pollination can reduce the number of kernels on a cob. Add aged compost and aged manure to planting areas the autumn before planting. Corn is a heavy nitrogen user. Side dress corn with aged compost or compost tea when stalks are 25 cm tall and again when they are 45 cm tall and a third time when they tassel.