corn growth stages

Corn Growth Stages: How Does It Grow?

Do you wonder how corn grows? The corn is delicious to eat. There are many foods that you can make with corn.

But before you can have corn, the plant must be planted first, and then it will give a lot of corn kernels.

If you are growing a corn plant in your garden you will know how a corn plant grows and it will give you an idea of how long you need to wait before you can start harvesting ears of corn. It is great to know the corn plant life cycle.

Corn Growth Stages

Stage 1. Seed

The very first stage of a corn plant is in the form of a seed. The plant will not grow if you don’t have any seeds to plant.

During this period nothing happens because it is just the beginning. Once the planters plant the corn kernels in the soil the plant will start growing.

This early stage of the corn plant is important. In order to grow corn plants successfully, high-quality corn seeds must be used so that the growth rate will be great.

There are some corn varieties that are producing a lot of seeds that are great to grow. If you are planning to grow corn it is better to look for this kind of corn so that you will harvest a lot.

Stage 2. Germination

The next phase is the corn germination stage. During this period the corn kernel starts to grow roots and tiny leaves. The seeds will germinate especially if the seeds are high quality.

It will take about 2 to 4 days for the corn seeds to grow roots and small leaves. Usually, plants that have small seeds like corn germinate fast compared to those plants or trees that have big seeds.

The water, air, and sunlight will help the corn seeds to sprout. Usually, corn plants are planted in places like fields where there is a lot of space.

After a few days, the corn will increase in height and become a young plant.

Stage 3. Germination

After the seeds germinate they will turn into seedlings. The seedling is a small form of the plant and has small leaves, roots, and soft stems.

During this period the plant needs water and sunlight to increase its height. When there are enough nutrients in the soil, it will also help the seedlings grow much taller and faster.

Usually, corn seedlings are not being transplanted, especially on the farm. But if you are just growing some corn plants in your garden you can also do some transplanting or some thinning so that there will be much space for each plant to grow well.

If you are going to visit a corn farm, usually the plants are planted too close to each other. One reason for planting corn plants too close is it will help increase the pollination process.

After the corn becomes a seedling it will grow bigger and taller.

Stage 4. Vegetative Growth

During this time, the corn plant grows rapidly and becomes bigger and taller. The plant grows more roots, there are more leaves, and the stem becomes harder and thicker.

The corn plant becomes more mature during this time and it needs more water, sunlight, and nutrients to make it ready to produce tassels, silk, and ears of corn sooner.

Vegetative growth is the phase where the plant grows faster compared to the early stage which is quite slower.

Stage 5. Tassels, Silks, And Ears Production

Once the corn plants become more mature they start producing tassels (male structures), and silk and ear (female structures). Those parts are important in the production of corn.

When pollination happens there will be more ears of corn that can be harvested.

Stage 6. Pollination

Once the plants produce tassels, silks, and ears, the pollination stage will be the next. The corn plant is pollinated with the help of the wind.

Since commonly corn plants on the farm are planted very close to each plant, the pollination process becomes easier.

In one block there are so many corn plants and they are well benefited in terms of pollination because of the spacing they have.

It is really helpful to grow corn plants with a little spacing because it will increase the number of ears of corn per plant.

When pollination has a high rate, probably there will also be lots of corn to be produced. The wind will be one of the most helpful things when it comes to corn pollination.

Stage 7. Kernel Development

After the pollination, the kernels will start growing. The kernels are small during the early stage but they become bigger as time passes by.

The kernels are color white but they turn yellow when they start to ripen. It will take a few weeks for the kernels to ripe but as soon as they are ready enough they can now be harvested.

There will be around 500 to 800 kernels per ear especially when the plant grows well. Also, pollination can gradually increase the number of corn kernels.

Another thing is by choosing great corn varieties you can achieve to harvest those numbers of kernels per plant.

You can also get more kernels if each plant will grow more ears. For example, in one plant there are four ears of corn and each corn has 800 kernels then overall you will get 3200 kernels for one plant.

If you want to increase the number of ears of corn, you must grow more plants. There are home gardeners that grow a few corn plants and it will be good for the family to plant more corn. 

Stage 8. Drying Phase

After harvesting those ears of corn, the plant will stop growing and will dry. The corn plant journey for one cycle ends here.

And the new journey will start again once those harvested corn seeds are replanted. The cycle of a corn plant begins from a seed and the cycle will continue once those seeds are planted and become a new plant again.

Those dry corn plants will be mixed on the soil and can serve as fertilizer on the soil. It is good to leave it there but some growers, they remove those corn stalks.

The Life Cycle Of Corn

The corn life cycle starts from a seed, the seed germinates, it becomes a seedling, it matures, produces flowers, the flowers become pollinated, the plant produces corn ears, and the plant dries. There are many stages in the corn plant growth and it shows how it grows and developed.