Corn…”On Deck”..Big Flavor on Small Plants

IMG_0442My garden is not huge.  I plant vegetables in 4 raised beds that measure 2 feet by 8 feet and 3 beds that measure 2 feet by 4 feet. So, I didn’t think corn, which is usually huge, would be a good use of space. But then I noticed small “container” corn in the Burpee Seed Catalog last spring. “On Deck” corn, bred for containers could be planted 9 seeds to a 24″ container.  Oh, I was so ready to try that!

I purchased two 24″ plastic containers from our local Costco and filled them with Miracle Gro Potting Mix. Next, in went the seeds (on April 21). The foil sparkler kept the crows away!IMG_8480adj

They grew well with one sprinkler head per barrel  running every other day for 10 mins. On really hot days I did a little hand watering as well.IMG_8978

I didn’t fertilize since the potting mix had some food in it. The leaves were beautiful up close:IMG_9002

The fuzzy tops were nice too:IMG_9597

By June the little ears formed:IMG_9469adj

and by August 1st we picked our first full sized ears of corn….really sweet and totally delicious! IMG_0446

Since I planted one of our barrels a week after the first one, we picked 17 ears of corn over a period of 10 days.  Our experience was so much fun we will certainly  do it again next year!

Our only disappointment was that we expected two ears per stalk with would have been a yield of 36 ears and from our 18 plants we only got 17 ears. Also, though the plants were beautiful most of the time, a few weeks before the ears were ready the bottom third of the plants began to dry and turn brown though the top was healthy and the ears developing.  We called Burpee but the customer service guy didn’t know why.  He wanted a photo but we couldn’t find a place to attach a photo so we gave up. It didn’t seem to hurt the ears. The only disappointment at all was the small yield. Since we still had plenty of ears to eat and there could be numerous reasons for the smaller then expected yield, that will certainly not stop us from planting it again and I urge you to give it a try too!

On Deck Corn facts:
You can plant  9 seeds to a 24″ container.
We harvested in 102 days instead of the advertised 61-63 (but we have had cool weather-maybe a reason).
We got 17 full size 7-8″ ears from 18 plants – we expected 2-3 ears per plant
(not sure why).
The taste is out of this world sweet…way better than anything you can buy.
The plants were about 5 feet tall from the top of the barrelto to top of the plant.
Easy to grow….plant, water, walk away! We had no bugs, disease…nothing!

Recommended? YES!

Available from: Burpee Seeds:  here

 

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