I started sowing sweetcorn about a week ago using 4 in pots inside the greenhouse, the seedlings are germinating well in this tropical heat that we are experiencing at the moment. All you need to keep sweetcorn happy until planted outside (wait until the last frosts are over) is a sunny windowsill, they love the heat but need plenty of space so I only sow one seed per pot. Sweetcorn is one of my favourite vegetables to grow, not only because it tastes so much better than anything you can buy in the shops, but it also adds a touch of beauty to the veg garden, rustling in the breeze, adding height and interest.
Sweetcorn is wind-pollinated so it’s best planted out in blocks rather than single rows. I usually plant a few blocks using 15 or 18 plants in short rows of 3, this way the plants are closer together which helps to ensure successful pollination of the silks. With this in mind I have sown quite a few seeds to allow for failures. It’s possible to grow a few plants in a large pot successfully but expect a low yield. Despite this, even if you only manage to pick one or two cobs it’s totally worth the effort for the fresh and sweet taste.
However you decide to grow sweetcorn, cook the cobs as soon as they’re picked for the best flavour.