It is possible to grow corn in containers, but you didn’t get enough yields from gardens or fields. Corn requires more space than most small or medium-sized containers. If you are planting corn in containers, use larger pots and maintain optimal required conditions.
Plant your corn in warm soil, as it didn’t germinate when planting in cold soil. Place your seeds in the pot after passing the last frost date. Water well after spreading seeds; maintain the moisture during the whole growing season as containers dry out quicker than soil.
Size Of Container To Grow Corn:
Choose a large container that is at least 12 inches deep and wide. Make sure your container has enough drainage holes at the bottom. You can use any bucket of the required size from your home, wooden crates, terracotta pots, or any trash from your home. They also perform well in growing bags.
Just make sure they have adequate drainage and are large enough to support fully-grown corn plants. About four corn plants can be easily grown 12-inch pot with room to grow.
Varieties to Grow:
When you grow corn in pots, choose a dwarf variety that should not exceed 4 or 5 feet in height, because if you select big ones they will outgrow your pot and may prove problematic. Some good choices are the short trunk
This is an early sweet corn variety that produces 8-inch long kernels. The kernels are super delicious and tender. It will surely germinate even in cool soil. The stalks tend to be around five feet tall. It produces two to three kernels per plant.
Sweet Painted Mountain:
It is a very beautiful variety of corn. It is famous because of its drought-tolerant ability. It can be used for both eating and ornamental purposes. It can be eaten fresh, ground, or roasted, you can easily preserve it for later uses.
Strawberry popcorn has little kernels but they look big in appearance. They produce corn maximum of four to five inches long. The plant grows up to four feet. Two to four corns are present per plant.
Sweet Spring Treat:
It is more quickly growing than any other type and is ready to harvest between 65 to 70 days of planting. It grows up to five feet in length. They are popular for being able to handle cool soil temperatures. It makes it superior to others.
Chires Baby Sweet:
It is a small corn variety that gives you a high yield. The small kernels of this corn are also known as baby corns. Each stalk can produce up to 20 tiny ears of corn, more than any other variety.
You can also grow fast-growing varieties if you live in an area with a short growing season, like where winter is prolonged. These varieties are Bonjour or casino.
How to Grow Corn in Pots?
Sow four to six seeds per pot at a depth of about 1 inch and at a distance of 6-7 inches. Then put a little soil on top of them. Don’t worry if the corn is planted close together in a pot, after germination if you feel overcrowding thin the seedling.
After planting water well your pots. In cooler weather, they will take 10-15 days for germination, where the temperature is between 55 to 60 degrees Fahrenheit. In temperatures, 65 degrees Fahrenheit or above it took a few days to go.
The Number of Ears on One Stalk of Sweet Corn:
The number of ears varies greatly from variety to variety. Most sweet corn varieties have one to two ears per plant because they mature rapidly. Usually, dwarf varieties grow best in containers. Early maturing plants have one ear while those who mature later bear two or more.
Requirements of Corn to Thrive Well:
Corn plants have the following requirements to thrive well even in containers.
Sweet corn needs full light exposure, plenty of water, and fertile soil to thrive. So select a spot that gets at least six hours of full sun. A wall that retains heat and reflects the sun is an ideal spot.
Mulching is a good way to ensure moisture. You can use wood chips, newspapers, or grass as a mulching material. Mulching also reduces weeding.
Corn pollinates via wind, and bees and humans also play their role. And cross-pollination is very common. So it’s best to select plants of a different type.
Corn grows best in loose, well-worked, well-drained soil. It prefers acid soil. Add compost to the planting area before planting or add compost to the planting area in the autumn before planting.
Corn plants require soil that retains moisture. Mix some sand to the soil as it will ensure a quick drain because corn does not like wet or soggy soil. A peat-based potting soil works best for them.
Corn Planting Depth:
Corn has a shallow root system; it doesn’t mean that you plant it on the surface. It requires particular depth to stand well in the windy season. Moreover, its best for apartment dwellers to provide support to their plants.
So corn should not be planted less than 1.5 inches deep, 1.75 to 2.5 inches deep is an ideal target but depending on soil type and conditions may be planted up to three inches deep without any effect on stand establishment.
Water your plant regularly as it requires consistent moisture. Keep eye on watering especially during hot dry spells, if you want juicy sweet corn water frequently after flower set.
Avoid overhead watering particularly when tassels appear. Provide water at the base, as Water hitting the tassels at the time of pollination can reduce the number of kernels on the cob.
Corn prefers nitrogenous soil. Apply fertilizer within a few days after planting. Dig a hole about 2 cm deep in diameter around each plant. Add 1/2 teaspoon 5-10-10 or 10-20-20 fertilizer per plant, and mix it well in the soil.
Corn does best with warm, sunny growing weather (75–86° F). It is best to grow in areas with little rain and usually have a bit high temperature. It gets mature quickly and shows a fast growth rate in warm spills. It does not tolerate even a bit of frost.
Usually, corn gives you harvest between 60 to 100 days of the plantation, depending on the variety and weather conditions. It is an indication that corn is ready to harvest when the ears turn dark green, the silk is brown, and the kernel is soft and bold. Squeeze the kernel and the juice will be milky, not clean.
- Harvest usually occurs about 20 days after the appearance of silk, as silk turns brown your corn is ready to harvest.
- Pick up the corn by holding the ear and turning sharply downwards, or you can use a sharp knife as well.
- Each stalk of corn will produce one or maybe two ears of corn, depending on the type you grow.
- Harvest corn in the morning and dip your ears in cold water immediately to retain sweetness.
Storage and Preservation:
It is best to eat fresh; it gives you a delightful taste. It can be preserved by putting it in the refrigerator for up to a week. Wrap unopened straw in damp paper towels. Corn on the cob can be frozen for 3 to 6 months. You can also preserve it by separating the seeds from the cob, and drying them which can be used for various purposes.
Care for Corn:
- Add forage to the corn to avoid competition for water and nutrient. Maize has shallow roots so avoid deep cultivation.
- Crowds mobilize a lot of fodder, but no cobs.
- To protect corn from birds, cover the kernels with paper bags after pollination.
- Poor seed growth can be the result of poor pollination; poor pollination affects the harvest rate but leads to overcrowding, or a lack of potassium in the soil.
- If the stalks are purple, it shows phosphorus deficiency.