Saturday, February 12

Sweet smell of success ... again please!

Last year our sweet corn and sweet peppers did particularly well and so we will be sticking to the tried and tested varieties again this year.

We will be growing two varieties of sweet corn Sweet Nugget and Tasty Gold but will make sure as we did last year that we do not plant the varieties too closely to one another as they could cross pollinate. This could produce inferior cobs which would never do! We also try not to grow too near to where our plot neighbours have planted their sweet corn. It isn’t difficult as most of our neighbours plant theirs before we do. The plants are planted in a block rather than a row as they are wind pollinated.






The plants produce two types of flowers – the male tassels and the female flowers are the ones that produce the cobs. Pollen from the male flower blows onto the female flower to pollinate it and this has a better chance of happening if the plants are in blocks. Last years we staggered planting. One lots of both varieties produced earlier cobs many of which were stripped of the corn kernels and frozen. This made up for our lack of frozen peas. The second lot provided fresh cobs.












I’ve added the sweet to the peppers to differentiate them from my vegetable, (although it’s really a fruit) nemesis - the dreaded chilli – dreaded because chillies and I have been known to clash and I have been the one to come out worst.

We have tried growing bell peppers on and off but have never really been satisfied with the outcome. I suppose this is partly due to us not being able to sow the seeds early enough so these will take priority in our Indoor Garden. Anyway last year we grew Jimmy Nardello which produces long thin red peppers and Tequila Sunrise which is described as a carrot shaped yellow pepper that can also be grown as an ornamental. I read somewhere that the long peppers were more reliable than bell peppers and our experiences last year seemed to back up this theory so we are hoping for a repeat performance this year back up this theory.

We are hoping for a repeat performance this year.



29 comments:

  1. Fabulous photos of all those lovely peppers! Fingers crossed for you that you get a great crop this year - looking forward to following progress over the coming months...

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  2. Those peppers look really decorative. Presumably they are sweet, not hot though, which wouldn't suit me.
    I tried Sweet Corn once, but I didn't think it very good value for space in my small garden. I think I only had about 8 plants, and it wasn't really enough to ensure good wind pollination.

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  3. I was pleasantly surprised by how many peppers we got Amy

    Yes they are sweet peppers, Mark - I stay well away from chillies. You're right sweet corn does take a lot of space when mostly you only get i or two cobs per plant

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  4. I am really excited about groin sweetcorn this yar after it did so well last year so I hope I'm not let down.

    My bell peppers have never done very well but I am going to start them off earlier this year.

    I love chilli peppers and the last two years they have produced well for me athough they have never been very hot so I am hoping for heat and good harvest from them this year!!

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  5. I'm hoping for a better year for my sweetcorn, I didn't get any last year, though I've done well with it in previous years. I've never frozen it before though, do you mean that you strip the cob before freezing it? If so, is it very time consuming or have you got a quick method? I'm following your lead this year and trying a long sweet pepper, I hope it does well.

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  6. I grew sweetcorn for the first time last year and was really pleased with how well it went. Looking forward to more of the same this year!

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  7. I was going to plant some sweet corn this year...but now I think that I am just going to plant some popcorn at the plots for my grandson.

    I have also found that the long sweet peppers are very prolific. I plant two different Italian varieties and they always do very well.

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  8. We like these peppers better than the bell peppers because they are thinner skinned and to us they have a nice pepper taste without that big crunch of pepper that you get from bells. I have tried growing corn a couple times but it can't seem to stay rooted in our clay soil. When it rains they fall over.

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  9. Good luck with both. I'm cutting back on veg this year whilst I concentrate on developing some other areas of the garden. Sacrilege I know, but in the long run it means I will be able to do more.

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  10. Sweetcorn is so weather dependent as to be not worth growing in Scotland. I have tried it and produced unripe baby corn. I've seen too many other people disappointed too. It's a triumph to get them big enough to eat - but yields don't justify the space they require (IMHO)

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  11. Chiili peppers are a no no for me Tanya. When we grew bell peppers we were lucky to get a couple on a plant.

    Yes we do strip it off Jo - we sit outside as bits of corn fly everywhere and I strip off the leaves whilst martyn runs a knife down the cob to strip off the corn. Hope the peppers work for you too or I'll feel responsible.

    You'll have more room too won't you Damo

    Popcorn Robin - is that different - I thought it was just ordinary corn that had been popped!

    You're right Becky they are thinner skinned - I never thought of that before you mentioned it! We have clay soil too but the corn is in quite big blocks so maybe that is why they stay upright.

    Not sacrilege BW - everyone knows what they want from a garden and it is their absolute right to do whatever they want with it (well within reason - I have never gone for the plantless gardens that some modern gardeners seem to like!)

    You're right Mal - you have to grow what works for you and if the corn doesn't like your conditions then it is a lot of space for nothing.

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  12. Thanks so much for visiting my blog and taking the time to leave a message. It was a fun thrill to read your profie - my ancestors on my fathers side came from Wakefield in the county of Yorkshire! I am impressed that you are successfully growing both corn & pappers. I think of them as "hot weather" crops that wouldn't do particularly well in England. I will enjoy following your blog!

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  13. We never get much from Bell Peppers and Jo said you had recommended the long varieties so we may try some this year. We love chilli peppers and grow oodles of them :)
    We're always lucky with our sweetcorn but we've never stripped it. To be honest we munch most of it as soon as it gets picked..

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  14. It's a small world Lexa.

    We grow our peppers in an unheated greenhouse but the sweetcorn does well outside. I think the seed producers are producing more and more varieties that grow in cooler temperatures and also fruit for instance varieties of apricots and peaches.

    It's not really a case of us becoming warmer more plants becoming more adaptable. I think this is why often seeds companies in different parts of the world recommend different varieties.

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  15. Hi Mo,
    We were the same with bell peppers which is why we started to grow the long ones - not expecting much and to be honest not treating the plants last year as we should have.

    AS for the sweet corn planted two successive plantings. WE had too many to eat straight from the plant and so froze when we had a glut. It was as well as we didn't have many peas etc and cabbages were frosted so the corn has been a banker vegetable.

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  16. Long peppers are more reliable for me too. But I always grow both, i don't know why is that...

    I never grow corn, as there are corn fields around and I can get some there. They do take up much space in the garden.

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  17. I don't either Ana - maybe it is something to do with the fruits being smaller and so taking less time to mature and ripen or maybe they belong to a different group a sort of non hot chilli pepper?

    I've been thinking about the space thing and really the varieties don't take too much space. We grow ours close together and they only grown about five feet high. It's not really any more space than it takes to grow cabbages. It just seems to take up space because of the height. Maybe the space needed is a problem in a garden due to the need to growing in a block but it's not a problem if you have an allotment - depends how much you like corn and what else you want to grow.

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  18. I hope you have repeated performance and much better harvest for sweet corn and pepper bell this year Sue.Unfortunately, pepper and okra did not go very well this year for us due to cold nights. Last summer was really hot during night as well so we had heaps of chilies and okras to freeze. But I am satisfied with our tomato harvest this year as previous year was a big dissapointment. Hope you have a lovely day for Valentines day with your love ones.

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  19. Thanks Diana - just been out for a nice lunch!

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  20. Since I'm thinking of doing corn this year, thanks for the recommendations and tips. And thanks for your comment on my camera post. I'm afraid we didn't think about the idea of a remote shutter until after we'd purchased the camera, and I don't think it's available for my Sony, but will research some more. It would be the perfect solution.

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  21. Barbara - Have you a hole to plug is a remote if so go to Amazon and search Remote Shutter Release Sony and any options should come up - that's what I did when I looked for mine.

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  22. Semplice e dolce. Sto pensando di iniziare un altro blog o cinque molto presto, e sarò sicuramente prendere in considerazione questo tema. Keep 'em in arrivo!

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  23. Those peppers look amazing - I will be sowing some in my propagator today and can only hope I get some fruit that look half as good. I will be trying sweetcorn too - how many plants do you think you need in one planting for good wind pollination? I have 1m x 2m beds and was thinking 2 blocks of 3 x 3 with a path separating them, and then the same again for a later sowing. I'm worried I need 4 x 4 but don't have space for 4 across in 1m width...

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  24. every best wish!! last year was a bonzana, so high hopes xxx
    Oh and I may have to come over and steal some as I LOVE sweetcorn and peppers - yum!

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  25. You've managed to grow stupendous sweetcorn! I think we're too far north, so I'll just feast my eyes on yours.

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  26. Buona fortuna con il blogging Anon

    Janet we grew in long beds which were two metres wide and we planted four plants across the bed - they were much longer than one metre though. I'd try for maybe four by three and this may be successful. To help pollination even more when the pollen is flowing shake the plants to spread the pollen.

    Carrie - let me know when you are sneaking over and I'll bake a cake!

    Must admit I'm not sure how far north sweet corn will grow Linda. Do you watch Beechgrove Garden on BBC Scotland - the garden is somewhere west of Aberdeen - I can't remember whether I have ever seen sweetcorn mentioned on it (we get it through Sky).

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  27. Wholesale Nursery Web DesignFebruary 28, 2011

    Hmmmm1 such an informative post! I really like it...and i like your efforts also! keep it up.:)
    By Wholesale Nursery Web Design on Sweet smell of success ... again please!

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  28. software developmentFebruary 28, 2011

    wow -- never thought that plants also have males and females. thanks for the useful info

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  29. Apologies to the last two contributors by I have removed the URLs

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