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Progression of the 2021 corn planting and harvest

Scott Hucker

Tags 2021, corn

Hah, this time I'll combine the planting and harvesting of corn for the full 2021 season.  Again, I'll work from the bottom up by date.


Oct 2

Last of the Johnny Dewlan Blue Dent Corn. I had one ear with spouted seeds which I gave to the geese.


Although we had some nights in the very low 40's F with beautiful days in the mid 70's, no frost yet.  We did have a week of heavy rain that interrupted the planting of fall grains. 


Sept 27

Peak harvest of the Johnny Dewlan Blue Dent Corn


Sept 12

Peak harvest of the Florani Red Flint Corn  (planted on May 24)


Sept 8

End of the Polar Dent Corn harvest.

End of the New York Red Flint Corn harvest.



Sept 1

Peak harvest of the Polar Dent Corn (planted on May 17)


Aug 31

Peak harvest of the New York Red Flint Corn (planted on May 18)


Aug 30

To my surprise, the Florani Red Flint Corn is beginning to have dry ears to harvest. They are tending to be more orange that the main crop.  


Aug 26

New York Red Flint Corn and Polar Dent Corn are beginning in earnest.  I harvested several early ears last week and placed mesh bags over choice ears.  There irate chipmunks chittering and the Starlings are around, so, we all know it is getting there.


Need to review my photos to get the Gaspe harvest dates. That first planting was a bust from smut.  Seemed like weeks of rain at just the wrong time.  Plantings 2 and 3 did far better.  For this very short corn, I will never make a single large planting.  Better to spread the risk!


May 27

Oh, I wasn't finished.  Today I planted the 2nd half of the large Gaspe grow out.  I didn't want put all my eggs into the same weather basket, so I split the planting into two plots. 

May 24

Finished the Florani Red Flint Corn, which completed our 2021 corn plan, well, until time to weed which is coming very soon!

May 22

Planted the Alberta Clipper Dent Corn in the back field.  At 65 days, this is another early alterative to Gaspe.  The May 15th Gaspe is looking great with great germination.  The 'weakest' at 90% is my test set of 'tiny seeds from tiny ears'.  No problem, it is a test. 

May 21

That May 15th Gaspe is coming up.

May 18

Planted the New York Red Flint Corn and some more Gaspe.   Gave the the May 15th Gaspe some water with a hose by hand.   It's been so dry. 

May 17

Planted the Polar Dent Corn.  This 95 day corn was developed in southern Michigan around 1949 from Duncan and was selected for resistance to spring frosts.   I also planted some more Gaspe.

May 16

Had 0.01 inches of rain last night.. but that did not stop me from planting the Johnny Dewlen Blue Dent Corn.  

 preparing the furrows for planting corn with a wheel hoe

I would have started on the Polar Flint Corn, but, those pesky taxes needed to be finished!


May 15

I feel like the season is progressing quickly this spring.  It's been very dry.   The 7 day forecast looks tempting enough:

Weather for 2021-05-15

Of course that's not enough rain to give even the mosquitos hope.   But, certainly no sign of frost.  Corn wants 55F soil temperatures, and our plot has been running 60F.  The importance of soil temperature is discussed here.

Soil temperature of 60F meets the 55F requirement for corn

Today I did half of the Gaspe.  When finished, the plot will be 60 feet long and consistent of 17 rows spaced 9 inches apart (as I did last year). I am increasing the between seed distance to 10 ~ 12 inches.  If any extra seeds drop into the furrow, I'll thin them to strongest looking seedlings. 

collection of Gaspe Flint corn to be planted in 2021

I have four types of Gaspe Flint Corn seeds planned for this year: 

  • My breeders delight--I hand selected gorgeous seeds from every ear of corn.  It was a slow and methodical process (performed on a snow weekend in the kitchen with a dozen shoe boxes.  
  • 5 Very Best Ears--Are exactly that.  Those rows are sandwiched between the breeders delight and the next group.  Ideally I want these 'mother' ears to be fertilized with a broad range of pollen.  
  • Prime--While the breeders' delight sampled everything, prime seeds came from nice looking ears that match the photos for what we sell
  • Tiny--This last set is a bit of an experiment.  Some ears were just plain small, and some only had a dozen seeds.    I had a lot of these ears.  They were the #2's and sometimes #3's ears on the plants.  What doesn't get planted or traded will get 'eaten'!    Before committing them to polenta, I wanted to know what the ears from these nubbins would become. 

Tomorrow, I will finish the Gaspe and start on the the Johnny Dewlen Blue Dent Corn.


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