My Sweetcorn in need of a weeding 24 May 2010


Having lived and worked in Tanzania for a while, corn (they wait until theirs is fully grown) is the staple diet of many African nations. Normally dried and ground into corn flour, is the Tanzanian equivalent of wheat in the UK or rice in the Far East. All of which are ceral crops (grasses). Sweetcorn, which is in fact the immature unripe corn, when picked and put on the barbeque to cook and later smoothered in butter, is absolutely delicious.

How to Grow Sweetcorn

1. I have grown from packet seed, but get much better results from letting one or two plants get to maturity, dry off the cobs, and use that seed the next year.

2. I plant mine in a square as this is supposed to help with pollination, and it certainly seems to work. Each seed about 20 cm apart in all directions.

3. To get a good crop you really will need a good long summer. Earthing up certainly helps them stand up to any wind which could blow them over.

4. For a sweet sweetcorn harvest as the tassles on the cobs change from white to brown, by twisting the cob as you pull it from the plant. The fresher the better. The sugar in sweetcorn will start turning in to starch as soon as it is picked.

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