Quick Reference

Harvest Type:  Single

Transplant/Direct Sow:  Direct sow or transplant

When to Plant:  2-3 weeks after the last average frost date.

Days to Germinate:  14 days

Days to Maturity:  60-100 days based on the variety

Planting Depth:  1 ½ – 2 ¼” deep

Germination Temp:  Over 50°F

Seed Spacing:  3-4” apart

Rows:  2 ½ - 3 ' apart

Light:  Full sun

Soil pH:  5.8-6.2 pH

Water:  1” of water per week.

Soil Temperature:  Optimal is 85°F .

Fertilizer:  10-10-10 N-P-K ratio with 2-3 pounds of fertilizer per

100 square feet.

Rotation:  Annually


Harvest Type

Single harvest 

TIP: Water corn a little more often when the tassels are present. The extra water helps with pollination, which produces full ears of corn at harvest time.

Transplant / Direct Sow

Direct sow seeds or transplant. There are some benefits of transplanting corn, such as weed reduction from shading.

When to Plant:

Sow corn seeds or transplant seedlings 2-3 weeks after the average last frost date. Aim for warmer soil temperatures between 50°F-85°F. Corn is heat-loving, and cold weather can damage the crop.

Days to germinate

It takes corn about 14 days to germinate. You may see earlier results if the weather is warmer.

Days to maturity

It takes about 60-100 days, depending on the corn variety you plant.

Planting Depth

Plant seeds 1.5-2.25" deep.

Germination Temperature Range

Corn needs heat to thrive. The germination range is 50°F at the root level.  Plant corn when the ambient temperature is 75°F or above.

Spacing Between Plants

Space seeds or seedlings 3-4" apart and keep rows 2.5-3' apart.

TIP: Corn is wind-pollinated, so keeping the rows around 2 1/2 feet apart allows the wind to circulate and move the pollen around.

Growing conditions

Corn is a heat-loving crop so plant it in fertile soil with a balanced fertilizer, such as 10-10-10 N-P-K ratio. Water the crop with 1" of water per week and add a little more water to the routine when pollination occurs. Rotate on a 3-4 year cycle to keep the crops producing viable yields.

Companion Plants

Cucumber, melons, and pole beans are excellent companion plants for corn. Plant mint and dill on the edge of corn to help ward against corn pests.


Rotate corn crops on a 3-4 year cycle and amend the soil before planting with a balanced  10-10-10 N-P-K ratio fertilizer.

Anticipated yields

Plan your garden yield at row lengths of 10-15 per person, spacing the plants 3-8 inches apart. That's about 20 stalks of corn per person, and each corn plant may produce one or two ears of corn. An ear of corn is about one serving for fresh corn. Be sure to plant extra for seed saving. For canning and preserving, plan on a 20-30 foot row per person. Plant a second crop about two weeks apart for an extended harvest.

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