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Subject:  Growing sweet corn in my new garden

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Cologne / Germany

Hi, I would like to know how you grow your sweet corn plants.
Got my new garden in October with pretty much nothing, not even a fence... I thougt it would be a good idea to plant sweet corn to eat and sell, it´s not popular and expensive over here.
Do you soak and pre-grow sweet corn seeds and plants like the AG pumpkin seeds? Or just into the soil?
Would like to share some experience here.
Cheers from Germany, floh (Bernd)

12/28/2017 10:56:37 AM


President - GPC

Yes one can presoak the seeds. Plant a couple per drop, I space mine 6" apart and then you can thin them to one plant every 6-12". Plant after the soil warms up, wanting knee high by the forth in our area. I like to use rows so you can drench easier, at least three rows for good pollination. Enjoy

12/28/2017 11:19:30 AM


Cologne / Germany

Hi WiZZy, can I presoak the seeds and plant them indoor in boxes so I have the plants knee high in April? Or maybe I misunderstood your comment.

12/28/2017 1:01:41 PM

Engel's Great Pumpkins and Carvings

Menomonie, WI (mail@gr8pumpkin.net)

They don't like to be transplanted. In the United States Floh the saying is "Knee High by the Fourth of July".

12/28/2017 1:54:54 PM


Cologne / Germany

Ah I understand. It might be difficult to decide what time of the year the soil is warm enough.
Over here they say "respect the ice saints" around the middle of May which might be the last time for frost. It normally doesn´t happen any more. Just that most gardeners prepare their plants before that time.
I personally start my peppers end of January, tomatoes end of February - in pots.

12/28/2017 2:56:17 PM

Peace, Wayne

Owensboro, Ky.

Agree w/Linus...corn does not transplant well, but my recommendation for best sweet corn, comes from Gurney's...called GottaHaveIt I will never plant & grow any other. Taste's like candy!! Soil temp at 70F or more when planting in the dirt! Peace, Wayne

12/29/2017 12:22:40 AM

Dutch Brad


Bernd, it is difficult to grow sweet corn in your location. I don't live too far away from you. I sow directly into the soil (2 seeds per 30cm) but I also start some indoors in pots. You don't need to soak the seeds. The ones I sow indoors (beginning of May) are planted outside in June. They always do better than the ones directly planted (end of May).

12/29/2017 6:03:54 AM


Anamosa, IA BPIowegian@aol.com

Sweet corn does like warm soil. And it needs generous amounts of nitrogen. Plant in a block instead of long, skinny plots to get better pollination. If you want to spread out your harvest, make successive plantings at 7 to 10 day intervals. The variety I like is called Ambrosia. I plant directly in the soil, and after it is about knee high I cultivate it and mulch it with grass clippings. I had problems last summer with Japanese beetles chewing on the ends of the ears. You need to keep it away from popcorn, or other types of corn so it does not cross pollinate. Because you are eating the seeds, cross pollination will effect the flavor.

12/29/2017 8:44:35 PM

big moon

Bethlehem CT

I plant sweet corn every two weeks from the middle of April up until the first or second week in July. The early corn varieties that I plant are what they call eh, se or su. These types are the more traditional varieties of sweet corn, often these types will sprout well in cool spring soil (50 to 60 degrees F). I know your sweet corn varieties will be different than what we can get here. A good seed catalog will mention if the seed has good cold soil germination and vigor. Ambrosia is one of the first ones I plant as it does come up very well in cool soil. Other varieties that germinate well in cool soil are 'Sweet Chorus' and 'Trinity' There is an old yellow variety called "Early Sunglow' which will come up very well in cold soil. (Pretty much if you can plant peas you can plant it.) (It isn't the best to eat though)
Once the soil warms up you can plant super sweet (sh2) types. The SH2's need 70 degree soil temps for best sprouting. (So do most of the better se, eh and su types) Don't plant SH2 with the other types of corn. The ears of corn will develop starchy hard kernels from the cross pollination. I don't soak any of my seed for any of my garden crops including AG's. If the soil is of the right moisture content and of the right temp they will germinate. I grow a lot of corn so transplanting is not an option. I do plant my earliest stuff under a big row cover. That really helps to get the corn up and growing. The only problem is that sometimes mice get under the row cover and eat the corn seedlings.

12/30/2017 8:38:19 AM

big moon

Bethlehem CT


Check out the above link to learn more about the different types of sweet corn.

12/30/2017 8:48:32 AM


Buffalo, MN (Billsbigpumpkins@hotmail.com)

floh, I agree with those above trying to start sweet corn early will just results in a poor germination rate. Let the soil temp get to 70 then start planting. If you have room you can plant the same type every 7-10 days or plant different maturing date sweetcorn for a long season.

12/30/2017 10:19:52 AM


Cologne / Germany

I think it all depends on your area. Like Dutch Brad said, where we live over here, this is not a predestined location for sweet corn.

I got 100 or more seeds from a Russian sort called "super sweet golden yellow". Whatever that does mean, it´s growing in Russia, so it should do it in my area anyway...
We don´t get much more than 60 to 85 Deg F in a good summer right now, and it can be colder until May. Most gardeners need to pre-grow their plants indoor.

1/3/2018 10:26:59 AM

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