Once a variety has been selected matching the local growing conditions, corn is planted at a density allowing the development of one corn cob per plant. To achieve high corn yields, it is important to maximize the number of grains per cob and to increase the grain weight . Through a balanced crop nutrition program, growers would be able to accomplish this.
Nitrogen is important to securing high corn yields. It fuels crop growth and development and needs to be readily available.
Phosphorus is particularly important for root development and good crop establishment.
Potassium, like nitrogen, also boosts crop development, and large amounts are taken up by the growing plant. Supplies need to be balanced alongside those of nitrogen. Good potassium nutrition can also help minimize the effects of frost damage and reduces lodging. Potassium is most important for stomatal closure and low supplies result in loss of water from the plant.
Magnesium, sulphur and iron increase photosynthetic activity and maintain good growth for high yields.
Calcium ensures good plant strength, protecting root, leaf and stalk production.
Boron is required for pollen tube growth and good grain set.
Zinc is important for photosynthetic activity.
Unavailability of any other micronutrient can also restrict growth processes and subsequent corn yield.