Gardening Tips for Corn That Actually Work!
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Corn is a cereal grain that has been consumed all over the world for many centuries now. It is rich in fiber and minerals, but it can also increase blood glucose levels if not eaten in moderation. In the culinary world, corn is regarded as a vegetable and is usually yellow. Some varieties of corn are available in different colors like white, red, and purple.
Gardening can be a tricky hobby to master, but it is not impossible. If you know what to do and when then gardening should be an enjoyable experience that provides plenty of healthy food for your family. In this blog post, we will discuss some tips for corn that actually work!
Corn and corn byproducts are in roughly 70% of the items you find in your local grocery store. The US grows 40% of the world’s corn!
Gardening Tips for Corn that Actually Work
We all know that corn is a delicious and nutritious crop. However, many people struggle with growing corn in their gardens. This blog post will give you some tips for gardening with corn so that you can grow a successful crop of corn this year!
History of Corn
Prior to the invention of agriculture, corn was an important crop for indigenous cultures in Mexico and Central America. Corn cultivation spread rapidly across North America by Native Americans who migrated from these regions with their crops.
Though the US takes the cake when it comes to the total harvest of corn, one will need to visit the history of the ancient civilizations of Central America if you are trying to trace the roots of this vegetable. From Mexico, this maize spread northwards into the Southern regions of the US and down to Peru. Around 1000 years ago, when the Native Indians migrated to the woodlands of the US, they brought corn with them. Corn, at this point, was an unknown entity in Europe. It was Christopher Columbus who took Europe the news of this beautiful vegetable – corn.
Benefits of Corn
Corn has many health benefits, including preventing heart diseases, controlling blood glucose levels, and even lower hypertension. Both adults and children love corn because of its sweet color. It is a source of many vitamins, manganese, dietary fiber, and folate. Since corn constitutes many vitamins, people love consuming this vegetable. It acts as a delicious addition to any meal, and since it is rich in phytochemicals, it gives a person protection against various chronic diseases.
Basic Corn Facts
The germination time of corn varies widely as per the temperature at which it is being kept. At 50 degrees F, corn will take around 25 days to germinate. It will take 14 days to germinate at 60 degrees F, and at 70 degrees F, the corn will emerge in just eight days.
Corn is an annual that thrives in the warm season. It is advisable that the corn should be planted after the soil reaches a temperature of 60 degrees F, which is around three weeks after the last frost in spring. Corn will never germinate if it is planted in cold and wet soil.
Corn thrives well in temperatures that range between 60 to 95 degrees F. If the conditions are cool during planting, it will put significant stress on the corn and the seed’s health. Any temperature less than 28 degrees F is lethal for corn.
One corn plant will yield around four ears of corn. If you are planning to can it, you usually need 8 ears for every quart that you want to can. Figure out how many quarts you want and then plant 8 times as many with a few extra for insurance.
The simple way to eat corn is to have it straight from the cob or opt for the buttered varieties you usually get in supermarkets. Whatever you do, corn is best enjoyed when it is eaten fresh. You may store it in the fridge for a maximum of four days, but the corn on the cob can be kept frozen for as many as six months.
Gardening Tips for Corn: Soil
Corn can be grown in many different climates and conditions so long as it gets enough water during the growing season. It should also be planted after all danger of frost has passed to ensure that it will not freeze before reaching maturity.
The corn should be planted in full sun. Remember that the corn grows best in loose and well-drained soil, which has a pH level between 5.8 and 6.8. Before you plant the corn, it is a good idea to add some compost to the planting area.
One should plant the corn after the soil reaches a temperature of 60 degrees F. The plant would require 100 frost-free days to get to the harvest stage, but it will depend mainly on the variety of corn used. It is a good idea to start the corn indoors, and then you can transplant it three weeks after the last frost. One can plant successive crops after every three weeks.
You’ll want to make sure that you plant your seeds about three feet apart from each other or more if possible because these plants need room to grow large without touching one another which could cause issues like stunted growth due to lack of sunlight exposure among others. You’ll want at least twelve inches between rows instead of planting them closer together than six inches.
Gardening Tips for Corn: Plant Care
The corn rapidly grows in hot weather, and it would require even moisture and regular watering to keep it from wilting. Since the plant is shallow-rooted, one should strictly avoid deep cultivation. The ears must be covered with paper bags after pollination to protect them from the birds. There should not be any deficiency in phosphorous, or else the stalks will turn purple.
In warm weather, the corn requires a maximum of 100 days to reach the harvesting stage. One will understand that the corn is ready for harvest when you find the ears turning dark green and the kernels becoming soft.
Corn should be harvested at a mature stage when the kernels are fully filled out and no longer producing new food, but still green. A corn stalk is usually dry and brown on the outside before it’s ready to harvest.
Each stalk of corn can have up to four harvestable ears of corn. The corn should be harvested in the morning, and one must keep the ears in cold water immediately to preserve the sweetness.
How to store fresh corn
Storing fresh ears of sweet home-grown corn can be tricky as they easily become bruised and lose their freshness.
- Do not store corn near apples as they give off ethylene gas that speeds up spoiling rates of produce.
- – Wrap the corn in a clean, wet paper towel and place it in an airtight container or bag – this will help keep moisture away from the kernels which can lead to spoilage.
There are many exciting ways to enjoy your corn! You can add it to soup to enhance the nutritional profile of the dish. You can even have it boiled and then add a dash of butter to enjoy a bowl of great buttered corn. If you like having sandwiches, you can try something different by putting in chicken and fresh corn between the bread to enjoy a crunchy but delicious sandwich.
Easy Corn Recipe
The cajun corn salad is a popular recipe enjoyed in summer and best suited for picnic dinners. The bell peppers and baby tomatoes will get you hooked with the very first bite. Learn how to make cajun corn salad here.
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