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PAL Questions: 1 - Garden Tools:
Can you tell me some varieties of corn that do well here? I would like to do an early and a midseason variety. Which ones do you like the best?
I consulted Growing Vegetables West of the Cascades by Steve Solomon's, and he says the thing to look for is the number of heat units (HU) required for the corn to reach maturity. Early corn needs about 1,300 HU, later types need over 2,200. We need to choose varieties on the lower end of the HU scale. (Seed catalogs for commercial growers typically have this information, while retail catalogs may not. If you look at a Northwest catalog, such as Territorial Seeds in Oregon, the maturity dates will be closer to our own.)
Solomon lists 'Earlivee' as an early sweet corn variety. In general, he seems to prefer hybrid varieties to open-pollinated, because they may have low yields and less than optimum eating quality, although 'Hooker's Sweet Indian' is one that Territorial carries and which he thinks is worthwhile. He recommends 'Jubilee' as a main season hybrid choice, but says, "It will just barely mature in warmer microclimates around Puget Sound." He recommends choosing small-eared and richly flavored varieties like 'Seneca,' and his final word is that he would grow early corn as the main crop in our area.
The New Twelve Month Gardener: A West Coast Guide has a longer list of recommended varieties, but less detail about their particular requirements and merits: 'Golden Jubilee,' 'Seneca Horizon,' 'Sugar Dots,' 'Bodacious,' 'Chief Ouray,' 'Miracle,' 'Sugar Buns,' 'Jubilee Super Sweet,' 'Seneca Appaloosa,' and 'Golden Bantam.'
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January 13 2017 10:35:53