At least, that's what happened last year, resulting in a beautiful (and relatively profitable) harvest of corn from mid-March to late April. This year, due to the Dread Dark Sword Grass (5/12/2013), my entire first plantings were swallowed by voracious cutworms, and the corn you see above was a speculative set of second plantings, started in succession from late November. Late being the operative word.
She grew, the corn, unbothered by the (now-sated?) grubs, and grew well. By March I was wandering thoughtfully down the rows that rose above my head, enjoying the whisper and swish of a burgeoning corn-field, and was daring to hope for a warm autumn, an early ripening, a discovery that what they said about corn in Tassie was wrong....maybe the microclimate of Golden Valley was sunnier and warmer than I thought?
And in mid-April there it was: ripe ears on the first planting. Succulent, sweet and plentiful -- sure, it was late, and the corn was not ripening in a block the way it did last year, when you could just walk down the rows and break off each ear. I had to feel each ear for firmness, and for that rounded end that signified fully ripened kernels, and often I had to rip off the husk a little to check for colour and plumpness....but that's ok, I'm still getting corn.
To weeks later the full, grim picture became clearer:
I could moan about all that effort, the time taken and the ground covered with these plantings, but it was always speculative to plant that late. On the upside, I still ate a lot of delicious corn over several weeks, and now I know when NOT to plant corn in future.
So I'm now thinking of the corn crop as a big green manure for my pea plantings, which will begin in a month or so. If anyone asks, that's what I'll tell them, anyway!