How to grow sweetcorn

Do it:

May, Jun

Takes just:

45 minutes

At its best:


Nothing beats the taste of freshly-picked sweetcorn in late summer and growing your own couldn't be easier. Sow your own seeds or buy young seedlings to plant now and grow them in a block on the veg plot. Or use them decoratively, planting them in large pots or growing them as exotic-looking crops in borders.

You will need

  • Sweetcorn seeds or plants
  • Modular seed trays and multi-purpose compost if raising from seed
  • Dibber or pencil
  • Trowel


If growing your own sweetcorn from seed, fill modular seed trays with multi-purpose compost. Sow a single seed in each, pushing them just under the surface. Water well.

After germination, wait until the roots of seedlings have reached the base of the seed tray cell before planting out. Long, root-training modules such as this (see picture) encourage longer root development. Water the compost well before planting out.

Using a garden trowel, plant seedlings into well-prepared ground, ensuring that the top of the compost ends up level with the surrounding soil surface. Plant in a block rather than in long rows because sweetcorn is wind pollinated.

Sweetcorn works well grown in large containers filled with multi-purpose compost. Grouped with other container veg they make an attractive feature in their own right.


Sweetcorn plants grow very tall, so take care not to position them where they will shade neighbouring veg plants.

Discover more ideas and inspiration

Related content

How to grow leeks from seed

How to grow onions from seed

How to grow peas

Related offers


Long-season gooseberries

Prolong the fruiting season with these three gooseberries – ‘Invicta’ (late May), ‘Hinnonmaki Red’ (from July) and ‘Hinnonmaki Yellow’ (from August). Just £7.45 each, or £14.97 for the collection, with free p&p.

Use code: GD16NOV

Order now


Subscriber only content

Save 15% on strawberries

Exclusive offer for subscribers - save 15% on top strawberry varieties, including 'Elegance', 'Florence', 'Honeoye' and more at Pomona Fruits.

Unlock now


Save £5 plus free seeds

VegTrug is a handy, collapsible raised planter and comes in a choice of four vibrant colours. Save £5 on a VegTrug planter, plus receive free seeds (worth over £20) with your order, and free p&p.

Order now