How to Grow Broom Corn
Annual, Zea Mays
As its name implies, the stalks of Broom Corn are used to make brooms. The
tops grow in fan-shaped blooms. These grass-like plants are not true corn
plants. They do not produce ears of corn for consumption.
Native to Central Africa, Broom Corn plants are popular in fall decorating
projects. The dried stalks are often included in floral displays with pumpkins
and gourds. They also look great by themselves, as dried flowers.
Did You Know: It takes one ton of Broom Corn to produce 80 to 100
brooms...... neither practical nor economical in today's world.
Plant Height: 8 - 12 feet.
Broom Corn plants are grown from seeds. They are grown very similar to Sweet
Corn. Directly sow seeds into your garden, after the last frost, and when
the soil has warmed. Germination is poor in cool soils.
Grow plants in rows three feet apart. Final spacing for plants is 6" - 12"
apart. Planting in blocks (3 to 4 rows), helps to maximize pollination.
Days to Germination: 7-14
How to Grow Broom Corn Plants:
Grow Broom Corn plants in full sun, in a rich soil that holds moisture, yet
These plants are heavy feeders. Mix plenty of compost and manure into your
garden prior to planting. Fertilize once every 2 -3 weeks during the growing
Keep the soil well-watered. Water deeply to about 5 inches, as the
roots grow deep.
Harvest plants when the stalks turn a tan-like brown. Dry plants upside down,
to keep stalks straight. Dry plants for three or more weeks.
Plant Maturity: 110 days.
Insect and Disease:
Insect can be a problem, especially corn earworm. Apply insecticides, as
Fungal Smut can occur. Remove affected plants.
Blights and rots are not uncommon in wet weather.