Do you love boiled sweet corn but your supermarkets are always sold out? Why not plant them in your backyard? Seeds can be bought easily online and cultivating them is a no brainer. Here’s a quick guide on how to grow your corn:
1. Choose the right kind of seeds
Decide what kind of corn you want. If you want yellow sweet corn buy yellow sweet corn seeds. Buy good quality seeds – buy from trusted sellers. Check the germination rate and purity of your seeds.
2. Prepare the land
Plow the soil where you intend to grow your corn 3-4 weeks before planting. Make sure to break big clods. Pulverize again a week before planting if needed. If it is hectarage of land, create furrows a day before planting at 75cm apart and 8m deep.
3. Apply fertilizer
Add fertilizer between furrows then cover them with some soil. If you are doing your planting in the backyard create an 8-cm hole spaced at 20-25 cm apart and apply your fertilizer and cover with thin layer of soil. If no soil analysis has been done, apply 5bags (50kgs/bag) of 14-14-14 per hectare.
4. Plant the seed
Plant 1-2 seeds per holes or hill if you are planting in a furrow. Cover the seeds with thin layer of soil and gently press it to obtain a good soil-seed contact.
5. Water the holes/hills
Irrigate/water your hills/holes after planting if it is dry season and there is no chance of rain. Do this every 2 weeks until a month before harvest time. If it is rainy season, water your plants when necessary.
6. Weed and monitor other pest
Do spot weeding from time to time or when needed. If it is a big field and has furrows, do off-barring after 21 days from planting. Monitor also for other pests and implement control measures if necessary.
7. Thin out
If you planted 2 seeds per hill and both grew, remove the unhealthy one to avoid plant competition.
8. Do sidedressing
Sidedressing is application of fertilizer near the plant. After a month, apply 4 bags urea (46-0-0) per hectare and immediately cover the applied fertilizer. Avoid putting urea to the leaves. Irrigate after fertilizer application.
9. Always visit
Always visit your field and check for diseases, pests and rodents and apply necessary control measures.
Time to harvest depends on the variety and the maturity stage you prefer – baby, green or physiologically mature corn.