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Failed Corn and Bean Plantings

Early planting and unseasonably cool wet springs can cause bean and corn seeds to fail to sprout or fully develop.  These seeds either rotted or were damaged by corn seed maggot.

This maggot feeds on germinating seeds, preventing the seed from sprouting or causing deformed seedlings that never fully develop.  Avoid this problem by waiting until the soil warms before planting these crops. Quick germinating seeds are less susceptible to this damage. 

Speed up germination by covering new plantings with row cover fabrics such as ReeMay, Grass-Fast and Harvest Guard.  These products help trap heat around your new plantings, keeping them warmer while allowing air, light and water through.

You can replant failed plantings or make your first planting when the soil dries and both the air and soil are warm.  Your patience will be rewarded with faster seed germination and faster growing plants. 

A bit more information: Make late and second plantings of these and other short season crops to increase your garden’s productivity. Check the packet for the number of days from planting to harvest.  Then make sure there are enough days left in your season by counting the number of days to the average first fall frost.

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