Yesterday at this time my sweet corn crop was head high. Then we had a
storm - badly needed the rain, but the wind was fierce and caused a lot of
the stalks to lay down almost flat against the ground (luckily, only one
stalk actually busted off).
This corn had not begun to grow tassles but is (or was) close to that stage.
I planted late, we were still having frost in early May (rare for this
region). The spring was exceptionally dry (also quite rare here) but I kept
the crop watered and it was doing very well. I had just finished cultivating
and adding compost between the rows.
Will the stalks come back up on their own? Or should I give them some sort
of help? Would they still produce ears if they stay mostly horizontal? This
has never happened to my corn before so I haven't got a clue....
Pat, sorry to hear your corn problkem. But thanks with helping me with mine
a few weeks ago. You suggested mounding soil to keep mine from flopping
over and it's worked. Maybe you could try that with yours?
It will work. I have held the corn stalk with one hand and use a hoe in
the other to pull up soil to hold it up. Sometimes the ones that are
really floppy need a shovel of soil on 2 sides.
If you don't stand them up, they will try to curve upward. The middle of
the plant that will produce the ears may not rise up much which is a bad
thing. You really don't want ears developing on the ground. That is bad
for both pollination and pests.
When you stand them up, they don't have to be perfect. Just get the
plant up of the ground and nature will take over from there.
That Pat would be me, and if the corn is completely lain over and ready
to tassle (like mine was after our storm on Thursday)...
Well, I propped mine up with handfuls of compost around the base. (Old
compost that had been worked by worms.)
If you don't have compost, prop them up with soil. (Be gentle.)
I've occasionally had to set posts and run strings back and forth when
a really tall variety got blown down.
The whole corn pollination system works better when the plants are
standing up with the tassles poised above the silks.
Pat in Plymouth MI ('someplace.net' is comcast)
Any technology distinguishable from magic is insufficiently advanced.
That happened to me a couple of years ago. I staked them up. Worked
fine until the ants attacked (which had nothing to do with the stakes
that I know of).
I put stakes along the rows, strung heavy cord (to look sorta like a
clothes line), got the stalks in vertical position and then tied them
to the cord.
On years past, this has happend to my corn, as well.
The stalks will straighten up on their own in about a week. There's no
need to do anything. The sun will do all the work.
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