You may remember that earlier this year, I was excited to try my hand at growing container corn.
I learned about container corn when I was reading through Burpee’s catalog. They had a hybrid corn called, ‘On Deck’, which was specially bred to grow in containers. Each stalk was said to produce 2 – 3 ears.
Well, I like to try new things in the garden and then tell you all about them. So, I ordered the seeds and got ready. You can read about how I prepared in my earlier blog post “An Old Whiskey Barrel and Corn Seeds”.
I hand-watered my seeds and was delighted when they quickly sprouted.
I planted a few nasturtiums in the front because I like to grow flowers with my vegetables.
The corn grew quickly, but I started to see a problem…
The corn on the outside was not growing as quickly as those in the middle. I suspect that maybe that was because the corn in the middle received more water and/or had more room to grow their roots.
The reason it is a problem is because in order to have a good corn crop with ears full of kernels, they need to be adequately pollinated. This is achieved by having multiple rows of corn.
In this case, I had plenty of corn stalks for pollinating. The problem was that the outer corn weren’t maturing as quickly as those in the middle.
As a result, the inner corn stalks started sprouting corn before the outer stalks and there was not enough pollen available.
I did get 3 tiny ears of corn among the center stalks – not worth eating at all.
I was going to pick the ears of corn so that I could show you how small they were. But…
The birds got to my container corn first.
I have grown corn in my vegetable gardens every year and have never had a problem with birds eating it.
But, they evidently loved my container corn.
**I watered my container corn diligently, taking care not to over water. They were planted in good-quality planting mix and given slow-release fertilizer.
While I did like how they looked growing in my whiskey barrel, I am not impressed with their uneven growth and lack of corn.
Needless to say, I won’t be growing container corn anytime soon. I am planning on planting strawberries in it this next spring though 🙂