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Strawberry corn, the seeds of which have recently begun to be sold, is classified as an ornamental crop. The plant loves warmth and sun, feels fine in the regions of Russia, where climatic conditions are suitable for the cultivation of sweet corn.
Appearance of the variety
The stem of an annual decorative cereal grows in length by a meter, in rare cases by one and a half. Oblong thin leaves covered with white stripes. Small cobs shine through against a green background, standing out with a purple hue, unusual for corn. Their length does not exceed 10 cm, their diameter is up to 8 centimeters. The ear has a wide base, tapering upward, like a strawberry berry.
At the stage of milky maturity, cereal grains are distinguished by a sweet taste, they are feasted on by kids, used by adults. The harvest ripens in August, early September.
How is it used?
Strawberry corn serves as a hedge for summer cottages, beautiful bushes are used as a background for other ornamental crops. Amazing flowers are cut out of the sheet wrapper, and appliques are made. From small purple cobs, which in shape resemble both cones and berries, they make up winter bouquets that do not lose their hue for years.
Nutrients are retained in strawberry corn even after boiling. It contains many vitamins of different groups, there are components without which the body cannot function normally:
- potassium and calcium;
- magnesium and manganese;
- iron and copper;
- zinc and phosphorus.
When grinding the grains of a strawberry crop, flour is obtained, which has a natural dye. It is used for baking pies, cakes, biscuits.
Soil preparation and feeding
Growing strawberry corn is no more difficult than a regular sugar or fodder variety. After harvesting beans, beans or cereals, you need to dig up the ground in your country house or garden and add fertilizer. After 2 weeks, with the help of a harrow or a cultivator, they begin to cultivate the soil, due to which weeds sprout in less quantity.
When the cobs are forming, the corn needs nitrogen especially. With a lack of this trace element, the leaves turn yellow and dry. With a phosphorus deficiency, they acquire a reddish tint. Potassium supplementation contributes to:
- increasing disease resistance;
- increase in productivity;
- accelerated growth.
Calcium is needed to reduce the acidity of the soil. From autumn or spring, before planting corn, superphosphate and potassium salt are applied. The culture reacts well to organic fertilizers - manure, compost, wood ash, loves the sun.
Strawberry corn is sown in the garden at the end of April, in the first days of May, when the air temperature reaches 13 degrees. 3 grains are placed in each well to a depth of 7 cm. The distance between plants should be no more than 40 centimeters. When the first shoots appear, 2 shoots are left in the nest. The strawberry variety is pollinated by the wind.
In the regions of Russia, where the summer is short, the cultivation of crops is carried out by seedlings. The grains, heated in the sun for several days, are sown to a depth of 3 cm in peas made of peat, they are filled with earth, sand and compost, and wood ash is added to the mixture. Seedlings are fertilized every 8-10 days, the soil is regularly moistened.
Care and treatment
In order for ornamental corn not only to decorate the summer cottage, but also to reward the harvest of miniature ears with sweet grains, you need to do simple agricultural work on time:
- Loosen the ground.
- Remove weeds.
- Thinning seedlings.
- Feed the soil with organic matter and mineral fertilizers.
When lateral shoots appear on the stem, it is better to carefully cut them off. Planting strawberry corn during the growing season is treated with fungicides, as wireworms, moths and other pests may appear.