Spacing for Golden Bantam

chickencoupeSeptember 29, 2013

I'm considering plant spacing. My goal is seed, actually.

Inexperience is bringing me to a stand-still in planning.

At least 200 plants to maintain good genetic diversity, if I understand correctly. I may do more.

I'm being greedy with space for the sake of amendments and giving them the best soil possible, but don't want to do anything stupid. I'm sure I will, anyway, but I can try.

Considering:

Three or Four 6 foot rows spaced 20" apart.
Planting as close as 8" apart in the rows.

The area is a quadrilateral with a base (on the West end) at 10'-0" wide (as our lot comes to a point). I paced the opposite (East) side @ 47'-0" across. I paced the South side connecting at 65'-0". This footage is to reflect the "fan" of the garden plot. What layout is best for pollination?

Gusty wind and breezes, generally, come from the West as indicated by my clothes line experience.

The wind dies in mid-summer unless a storm occurs where disease potential arises.

The directions I stated are not based on true North. The sun will rise at the upper right corner of this plot and set at the lower let corner. Just trying to keep it simple, really. Not sure if these matter.

Appreciate your consideration.

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chickencoupe

Apologies. My question is about my spacing consideration. Too tight? And whether I should fan the rows or stick to a block section. Tx

    Bookmark   September 29, 2013 at 11:47AM
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chickencoupe

It is a trapezoid, actually.

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   September 29, 2013 at 11:50AM
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chickencoupe

You know. I just received my book The Resilient Gardener by Carol Deppe.

Right away, I see a solution: Control trials.

    Bookmark   September 29, 2013 at 4:48PM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7

Bon,

For pollination, all you really need is a least 4 rows of corn. That allows each plant to have another plant on at least three sides of it so there is plentiful pollen available. The most important thing is to not just plant 1 or 2 long rows.

I've used all kinds of spacing, depending on the mature size of whichever variety I'm growing. Early Sunglow, for example, does fine with plants spaced 12-18" apart in rows spaced 2' apart, but I like to space Texas Honey June plants 18-24"apart in rows that are 2-3' apart. However, I've grown all kinds of corn using Square Foot Gardening spacing where the plants were planted 1' apart in all directions, with 4 rows and then a 2' wide path and then 4 more rows and another 2' wide path, etc.

You will get a good corn harvest even with the tighter SFG spacing, but the further the spacing (up to a point), the better the yield. When corn is spaced closely together, the leaves of the different plants are more crowded and may get less light per leaf, so you usuallly get slightly smaller ears. They still taste yummy though. With wider spacing between plants and between rows, more sunlight reaches the leaves of each plant and that normally will give you somewhat bigger ears, all other conditions being equal. When I have planted different varieties at the same time, using different spacing for the different varieties, the plants that had the greatest amount of spacing produced the largest ears.

Dawn

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 6:32AM
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Okiedawn OK Zone 7

Bon,

For pollination, all you really need is a least 4 rows of corn. That allows each plant to have another plant on at least three sides of it so there is plentiful pollen available. The most important thing is to not just plant 1 or 2 long rows.

I've used all kinds of spacing, depending on the mature size of whichever variety I'm growing. Early Sunglow, for example, does fine with plants spaced 12-18" apart in rows spaced 2' apart, but I like to space Texas Honey June plants 18-24"apart in rows that are 2-3' apart. However, I've grown all kinds of corn using Square Foot Gardening spacing where the plants were planted 1' apart in all directions, with 4 rows and then a 2' wide path and then 4 more rows and another 2' wide path, etc.

You will get a good corn harvest even with the tighter SFG spacing, but the further the spacing (up to a point), the better the yield. When corn is spaced closely together, the leaves of the different plants are more crowded and may get less light per leaf, so you usuallly get slightly smaller ears. They still taste yummy though. With wider spacing between plants and between rows, more sunlight reaches the leaves of each plant and that normally will give you somewhat bigger ears, all other conditions being equal. When I have planted different varieties at the same time, using different spacing for the different varieties, the plants that had the greatest amount of spacing produced the largest ears.

Dawn

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 6:35AM
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chickencoupe

Thank you for sharing your experience. The rest is up to my soil, then, with a little help from me.

The next step will be formulating a control study and find which is best. I"m not too picky, just want a decent yield.

    Bookmark   September 30, 2013 at 9:19AM
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chickencoupe

Welp. Nothing scientific about the planting. I did plant my corn very close.

I'm curious. I keep reading that bantam or... most sweet corns... are designed to bear 2..maybe 3 ears of corn.

Okay, I'm not complaining but it's my first and I've no idea why some of these stalks have 5 and 6 ears of corn! I really thought I planted more than one see, initially, when I saw multiple stalks growing from one spot. Eventually, the ground settled and I could see it was only one plant.

I guess I accidentally prepared the soil in a most perfect way? The ground tested rich, to begin with.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2014 at 7:56AM
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chickencoupe

Golden Bantam Heirloom Corn (Not the improved variety). Up to six stalks per seed. Some have 5 viable stalks. Up to 5 and 6 ears of corn per plant. Soil amendments for production: Fall double digging. Added fall leaves, rabbit stock (alfalfa hay, spent alfalfa pellets and aged rabbit poo) Deep plow in spring. Apparently, that worked very well. Bugs are having a great time with it, tho. We shucked one. It wasn't ready. Might be having weather-related pollination issues. Planted late, too. We are encouraged. Look forward to a lot more next spring.

    Bookmark   July 5, 2014 at 8:58AM
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chickencoupe

another pic

    Bookmark   July 5, 2014 at 9:01AM
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