Successfully Growing Corn in a Small Garden

Reader Contribution by Faithful Homesteader

For the past several years we have tried to grow corn on our humble homestead, but it has failed. This year, my husband tried something different and we finally have been able to enjoy that garden corn that I have been longing for.

Since we grow corn on a small scale, the traditional way of growing corn in rows with plenty of spacing between has not worked. The sun would beat down on the soil in between the rows and basically fry the corn. What has ended up working for us is a compact gardening style with 5’x8′ boxes.

The first thing my husband did was prepare the soil so that it would have additional nutrients. He used 40 pounds of cow manure, 40 pounds of compost, and 1 cup of organic plant food. He worked it all into the 5’x8′ boxes. He then planted the seeds 4 inches apart. When the corn started to come up, he put a layer of mulch down. This helped to stabilize the corn.  

My husband told some people how he was growing corn this year and they thought he was crazy. They were convinced that there was no way that the corn would do well under those conditions. Happily, they could not have been more wrong.

I was so excited when we picked the first of the corn. It made for a yummy addition to dinner. We really have ended up with an abundance of corn; we shared some with a friend. We had a good workout shucking corn and preparing to freeze it.

Our chickens have also been enjoying the corn. It is fun to watch them partake of it.

I am glad that my husband stuck with trying to grow corn. It is great that his plan worked. Overall, it has been a good year for the garden.

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