How To Grow Corn In The UK? 6 cool benefits

Corn cultivation in the UK is gaining popularity among farmers as it provides an opportunity to diversify their crop rotation while offering a high yield potential and versatility in its uses.

Growing corn can also have environmental benefits such as reducing soil erosion and improving soil health.

However, successful corn cultivation requires careful consideration of factors such as soil preparation, seed selection, and maintenance practices.

This guide will provide an overview of the steps involved in grow corn in the UK, including choosing the right corn variety, preparing the soil, planting, maintenance, harvesting, and storage.

How To Grow Corn In The UK?

How To Grow Corn In The UK?

By following these steps, farmers can successfully grow corn in the UK and reap the benefits of this versatile crop.

  • Choosing the Right Corn Variety
  • preparing the soil
  • planting
  • maintenance
  • harvesting
  • storage

Choosing The Right Corn Variety

Factors To Consider When Choosing Corn Varieties

  • Maturity rate: choose a variety that matures within the growing season and has a suitable growth rate for your region.
  • Yield potential: choose a variety that has a high yield potential.
  • Disease resistance: choose a variety that has good resistance to common corn diseases in the UK, such as Northern Corn Leaf Blight and Maize Dwarf Mosaic Virus.
  • Adaptability: consider whether the variety is suitable for your growing conditions, such as soil type, climate, and rainfall.

Recommended Corn Varieties For UK Climate

  • KWS Santiago: has good disease resistance and a high yield potential.
  • KWS Parkin: suitable for cooler regions of the UK, has a high yield potential, and is resistant to lodging.
  • LG Aviator: adaptable to different growing conditions, has a high yield potential, and is resistant to common corn diseases in the UK.

By considering these factors and selecting a suitable corn variety, farmers can increase the likelihood of a successful corn harvest in the UK.

Preparing The Soil To Grow Corn In UK

Soil Testing

Test the soil to determine its pH level and nutrient content.Soil tests help farmers determine what nutrients are deficient in the soil and how much of them to add.

Soil Preparation Techniques


tilling the soil to a depth of 8-12 inches to break up the soil and prepare a seedbed.


using a tiller to break up the soil and create a suitable seedbed for planting.

Minimum Tillage:

a conservation tillage technique that disturbs the soil as little as possible while preparing a seedbed.

Soil Amendments

Lime: used to increase the soil’s pH level, which helps plants absorb nutrients more efficiently.
Manure: provides organic matter and nutrients to the soil, which can improve soil structure and fertility.
Compost: helps improve soil structure, increase soil organic matter, and provide essential nutrients to the plants.
By properly preparing the soil through testing, selecting appropriate soil preparation techniques, and using soil amendments, farmers can create a suitable environment for corn growth and increase the likelihood of a successful harvest.

Planting To Grow Corn in UK

Best Time To Plant Corn In The UK

The best time to plant corn in the UK is typically from mid-April to early May, when the soil has warmed up to at least 50°F (10°C) and there is no danger of frost.
Farmers should also consider the local climate, as planting times can vary depending on the region.

Seed Selection

Choose high-quality corn seeds that are suitable for the UK climate and have a high germination rate.
Check the seed package for information on maturity rate, disease resistance, and recommended planting depth and spacing.

Planting Technique

Use a seed drill or planter to plant the corn at the appropriate depth and spacing.
Corn seeds should be planted at a depth of around 1.5-2 inches (3.8-5.1 cm) and spaced 8-12 inches (20.3-30.5 cm) apart in rows that are spaced 24-30 inches (61-76 cm) apart.

Ensure that the soil is well-moistened before and after planting to promote germination.
By planting corn at the right time, selecting high-quality seeds, and using appropriate planting techniques, farmers can establish a healthy corn crop that will lead to a successful harvest

Maintenance To Grow Corn In UK


Fertilizer Application

Weed Control

Disease and Pest Management

Maintenance Task Description
A. Irrigation Regularly water the corn plants to keep the soil moist but not waterlogged. Corn requires approximately 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water per week during the growing season.
B. Fertilizer Application Apply fertilizers that contain nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium based on the results of the soil test. Apply the fertilizers at the appropriate time to promote healthy plant growth and maximize yield.
C. Weed Control Control weeds by using a combination of mechanical and chemical weed control methods, such as hoeing, cultivating, or applying herbicides. It is important to control weeds early in the growing season, as they can compete with corn for nutrients and water.
D. Disease and Pest Management Monitor the corn plants for signs of disease or pest infestation, such as yellowing leaves, stunted growth, or insect damage. Use appropriate management strategies, such as crop rotation, pest-resistant varieties, or chemical treatments, to prevent or control disease and pest problems.



Signs of Maturity

  • Look for the following signs to determine when the corn is mature and ready for harvesting:
  • The ears of corn should be filled out to the tips with kernels.
  • The kernels should be firm and in the “dough” stage.
  • The husks should be dry and brown, and the silk should be brown and dried up.
  • The kernels should exude a milky substance when punctured with a thumbnail.

Harvesting Techniques

Follow these techniques to harvest your corn:

  • Use a sharp knife or pruning shears to cut the stalks just below the ears of corn.
  • Carefully remove the ears of corn from the stalks, being sure not to damage them.
  • Husk the corn and remove the silk.
  • Store the corn in a cool, dry place until it is ready to be consumed.

By carefully monitoring the signs of maturity and using proper harvesting techniques, farmers can ensure that they harvest their corn at the optimal time and in the most efficient manner possible.


Tips For Storing Corn

Follow these tips to keep your harvested corn fresh for longer:
Store corn at temperatures between 32-40°F (0-4°C) and at a relative humidity of 95-100%.
Keep corn away from fruits and vegetables that produce ethylene gas, as this can cause corn to ripen and spoil quickly.
Do not wash the corn until you are ready to use it, as excess moisture can cause mold and spoilage.
Store corn in a dark location, as exposure to light can cause the corn to lose its sweetness and quality.

Proper Corn Storage

Follow these steps to properly store your harvested corn:

  1. Remove any damaged or diseased ears of corn before storage.
  2. Place the ears of corn in a plastic bag or container with holes for ventilation.
  3. Place the container in a cool, dry, and dark location.
  4. Check the corn regularly for signs of spoilage and remove any spoiled ears immediately.

By following these tips and storing corn properly, farmers can ensure that their harvested corn stays fresh and of high quality for as long as possible.

How To Grow Corn In The UK

Benefits To Grow Corn In The UK

Benefit Description
Sustainable Crop Corn requires less water and fertilizers than many other crops, making it a sustainable choice.
Nutritious Corn is a nutritious crop that is rich in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.
Versatile Corn can be used for a variety of purposes, including human consumption, animal feed, and ethanol production.
Economic Benefits Growing corn can provide economic benefits for farmers and local communities through job creation, increased agricultural productivity, and exports.
Food Security Growing corn in the UK can contribute to food security by reducing dependence on imported corn from other countries.
Environmental Benefits Growing corn in the UK can provide environmental benefits by reducing the carbon footprint associated with transportation and reducing the need for land conversion for agricultural purposes.

Factors To Grow Corn In The UK


The UK has a temperate maritime climate, which means that the weather can be cool and damp, especially in the north and west. It’s important to choose a corn variety that can tolerate cooler temperatures and shorter growing seasons.


Corn grows best in well-drained, fertile soil with a pH between 6.0 and 6.5. Soil testing can help you determine if your soil needs any amendments, such as lime or fertilizer.

Planting Date:

Corn is typically planted in the UK from mid-April to early May, when soil temperatures are around 10°C. Planting too early can lead to poor germination and stunted growth, while planting too late can result in reduced yields due to a shorter growing season.


Corn requires consistent moisture throughout the growing season, especially during pollination and grain fill. If rainfall is insufficient, irrigation may be necessary to ensure good yields.


Corn is a heavy feeder, and requires adequate nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium for optimal growth and yield. Soil testing can help determine the nutrient needs of your crop, and fertilizers can be applied at planting and during the growing season.

Disease And Pest Management:

Corn is susceptible to a number of diseases and pests, including corn earworm, European corn borer, and southern rust. Monitoring and management of pests and diseases is important to ensure good yields and prevent crop damage.

By taking these factors into consideration when growing corn in the UK, farmers can increase their chances of success and optimize their crop yield.


In conclusion, grow corn in the UK can be a rewarding experience for farmers who take the time to choose the right variety, prepare the soil properly, and provide adequate maintenance throughout the growing season. By considering factors such as climate, soil, planting date, water, fertilizer, and pest management, farmers can optimize their yields and enjoy the many benefits of growing corn in the UK, including increased crop diversity, improved soil health, and potential economic benefits. With careful planning and attention to detail, farmers can successfully grow corn in the UK and contribute to a sustainable and thriving agricultural industry.

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