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Growing Sweet corn, also maize

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
P P P P P P P P P P P  

(Best months for growing Sweet corn in Australia - tropical regions)

P = Plant in the garden.

  • Sow in garden. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 16°C and 35°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 20 - 30 cm apart
  • Harvest in 11-14 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow in same bed): All beans, cucumber, melons, peas, pumpkin, squash, amaranth
  • Avoid growing in same bed: Celery.
  • A seedling
    A seedling
  • A young corn plant
    A young corn plant
  • Feathery cobs on side of stem. Male flowers at top.
    Feathery cobs on side of stem. Male flowers at top.

Plant in 4 by 4 blocks to encourage germination Pick when the silky threads on the cobs turn brown or black. Part the top of the leaves and test for ripeness by pressing a grain with your fingernail. If it is milky, it is ready.

Early varieties ripen quickly and are sweeter when just picked.

Avoid planting coloured maize ( for drying) near sweetcorn as they will cross-pollinate and spoil the cobs on both.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Sweet corn

Pick and cook within an hour. Remove the silks and outer leaves.
Best flavour if microwave about 4 minutes per cob.
Can be barbequed wrapped in foil
Cook large amounts in a stock pot until test soft.
Sprinkle with black pepper and dip in butter.

Your comments and tips

25 Aug 15, Mpilo Nyathi (Australia - temperate climate)
I live in NSW Finley Can l start planting my corn now ? I enjoy African corn which eventually makes meallie meal powder.l have not been able to find seeds for that type However l also like sweet corn Please help
03 Sep 15, Ben (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
Mpilo you can buy mealie meal from South African from shops on line in Australia
27 Aug 15, Carol (Australia - tropical climate)
Sweet corn is a warm season plant, and should be sown only after all chance of frost has passed, usually around 14 days after your district's average last frost date. Ideal soil temperature for germination is from 21 deg C to 27 deg C, and ideal growing temperatures from 15 deg C to 30 deg C. So, depending upon your local conditions it may be best to wait for warmer days in Sept or even into October if your climate is somewhat cooler during these months. You can check out average temperature ranges for your district on the Bureau of Meteorology website.
31 Aug 15, Edna Sabile (Australia - temperate climate)
very true, i'm waiting to get warm here in Marulan because i'm excited to plant corn this year
14 Aug 15, jim (Australia - arid climate) keep birds away from cobs slip a plastic bag or stocking foot over the cob....problem solved
22 Mar 15, Scott (Australia - temperate climate)
Why does my sweetcorn end up with no kernals on the cob. I prepared the soil with organic pellets and chicken manure but didn't have any luck.
07 Jul 15, Steven (Australia - tropical climate)
Sounds like they weren't pollinated
28 Feb 15, Francis (Australia - temperate climate)
Can you get coloured sweet corn in Australia? If so, where? They have heaps of types overseas, but the only coloured types I can find in Australia are not sweet corn.
07 Feb 15, john (Australia - temperate climate)
my corn ears are white and small. why have i done wrong?
15 Feb 15, Leah (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Perhaps they haven't been pollinated enough or gotten enough water.
Showing 1 - 10 of 168 comments

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.

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