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Failed Sweetcorn

ColinAColinA Posts: 392

Has anyone had trouble with sweetcorn this year?

I have planted two packets of seed from different suppliers and different varieties in total about 70 seeds, these were planted in pots of compost but I have only got 7 plants when i check the other seed they appear swollen but are very soft to the touch.

Any Ideas please



  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,961

    How have you been germinating them - in a heated propagator?  It's been a bit too cool for them to germinate without. 

    Sweetcorn needs a constant minimum temperature of 16C to germinate

    I'd have another go when the weather warms up if you don't have a heated propagator.

    Good luck image

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • Forester2Forester2 Posts: 1,477

    Also be careful with your wintering as they can go soggy if over watered and therefore don't germinate.  Have another go as there is still time.

  • Steve 309Steve 309 Posts: 2,753

    Mine have been OK - 25 out of 30 germinated in 3" pots of multiporpoise compost in large unheated greenhouse where it's certainly been below 16 at times.   Compost soaked on sowing then covered under a clear lid till germination.  Incredible F1.  That's the variety, not my opinion of it image  

    This is my first time growing sweetcorn so I'd be interested to hear how everyone gets on with it.  I put them in the cold frame yesterday to start hardening off as the roots are starting to fill the pots and we're unlikely to have any more frost here.  Intending to plant them in two adjacent raised beds (to give a square), mixed with squashes.

  • fidgetbonesfidgetbones Posts: 17,592

    I've only sown mine today. They are going in the conservatory as its frost and mouse free.I have sown Swift F1, which have done well for me for the last two years.

  • Forester2Forester2 Posts: 1,477

    Oops Colin I meant 'watering' not wintering derrrrrr.image

  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,267

    I've not sown mine yet, was going to do them at the weekend.

  • Busy Bee2Busy Bee2 Posts: 1,005

    Steve, my experience is like yours - planted a pack of Country Value seeds in an unheated greenhouse a few weeks back - 3 and a half I think, and most are up.  And it has probably been less that 16 degrees quite a lot, although we are in quite a moderate part of the country. 

  • WelshonionWelshonion Posts: 3,114

    I sow mine on wet/damp kitchen paper in a closed plastic container.  No additional heat required.  As each seed germinates - you have to check every day after the third day - pop the seed in compost in a pot or Rootrainers.

    I expect to get 100 percent germination.  I use Franchi seed as it is very reliable.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 87,961

    Ah!  RHS gives different information to my (rather elderly) book - the RHS says soil temp needs to be a minimum of 10C for sweetcorn germination - I know there are newer varieties that do better in the UK climate, so maybe that accounts for the difference.  

    But I still think that it may be the cool temperatures that have caused germination problems - I don't know where you are Colin, but it's only been this week that we've had overnight temperatures of over 8C, and we've not had any overnight minimums of 10C yet. 

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • ColinAColinA Posts: 392

    Thanks for all the info

    Some of the seeds were in a propagator some just on the shelf in a potting shed some of the latter were the ones that have germinated.

    I am in the NE and the weather has been warm for the last week or so

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