Corn needs fertile soil with a lot of compost/manure. Corn is wind pollinated so you should grow at least 16 corn plants (plant in a block – not in a row) so that enough pollen from the tassels will land on the silks to pollinate all of the kernels to produce full ears of corn. Not enough space for 16 plants? You can hand pollinate your corn (look online for instructions). Plant corn seeds outside after the soil has warmed to at least 65° (5/20-6/15). Plant seeds 6” apart in rows 36” apart (thin plants to 12” apart). Plant at least 4 rows of 4 plants in a block. Days to germination: 3-12. You can also start corn seeds inside and tranplant outside 5/20-6/15.
Leave ears on plant until kernals are hard and glossy and the husk is tan and dry. Harvest on a dry day. Break off ears, remove husks and lay them out to dry for several weeks under cover in an area with good air circulation. Kernals should be 13-14% for best popping. Periodically test dryness by doing a test pop. Store on the cob or shelled. Kernals can be removed with a knife or an inexpensive hand sheller found online. For those so inclined, corn can be popped on the cob in a microwave.
Corn is a difficult seed saving crop. Corn suffers from inbreeding depression if seed is saved from too few plants. Minimum population size: 100 plants. Corn is cross pollinated and will cross with all other corn varieties. It is wind pollinated which can carry pollen for several miles so corn seed can be contaminated by GMO field corn. Isolate corn from other varieties by at least 2 miles. Harvest seed from the interior (as opposed to the outer rows) to help minimize crossing.