Thursday, June 23, 2011

Corn Lodging Follow-Up

The corn block is doing exceptionally well since I set up the woven containment system for each stalk.  In fact, the corn stalks have grown almost 1/2 foot since last weekend and are now up to 36" tall.  
This won't be the end of my worries, though.  When I picked the corn variety "Honey & Cream" from the catalog, it was because the description sounded so good:   

"Nothing beats the old-fashioned flavor of this classic, bicolor corn.  
Succulent and sweet, 7 inch ears form 12 rows of the most flavorful, creamy kernals".  

I had fixated on "old-fashioned flavor" and "flavorful, creamy kernals".   I failed to seriously take into account the rest of the description:  "Robust, 7 foot tall plants ..."  

                                                  7-FOOT TALL PLANTS!!  

What was I thinking?  Obviously, I wasn't.  Most corn varieties for the home garden fall in the 5-6 foot range which would have been a better height for my garden.  With the corn growing in a 16" high raised cinderblock bed, the tops may eventually be unreachable.   ..."where corn grows as high as an elephant's eye"...

So my plan is to add 8 foot stakes at the corners and continue to corral the block of corn inside the twine enclosure to prevent "stalk lodging".  That's when the corn plant is actively growing ears and breaks in the middle of the stalk from strong gusts of wind.  The result from this type of lodging is pretty much total loss of the plant.

I'll be learning more from growing this block of corn than I had ever imagined...

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