Do corn plants flower?

When you plant corn plants, you’re really doing it for one thing and one thing only: the delicious corn. But that doesn’t mean you don’t want to understand more about the plant, and that can raise some important questions. One of which might be, as it was for us, do corn plants flower? So, in today’s post we’ll answer exactly that after a little research – and trust us, the answer will not be what you were expecting.

A Corn’s Life Cycle

Do corn plants flower

To answer whether or not corn plants flower, we took a look at a very basic life cycle of a corn plant. That’s because most plants will only flower as they reach maturity, since the flower is usually what’s used as part of plant reproduction. So, here’s a quick rundown of a corn’s life cycle:

  • Seed: this is where the corn starts out in life (and usually ends, since this is what we eat) – it needs to be planted in order to grow into a corn plant again.
  • Germination: if planted in soils above 50 degrees Fahrenheit, then the seeds of the corn will germinate and start to grow, forming roots.
  • Sprout: after it has germinated, it will start to sprout – those tall green leaves corn is famous for will reach up out of the soil whilst their roots dig further down to get all the nutrients and sunlight it needs, respectively.
  • FLOWERING: huge spoiler alert with that one – the corn plants begin to flower at the head of the plant.
  • Fruit: the plant will then produce fruit, which is the corn we eat. If we plant some of that corn, then the cycle begins again.

So, Do Corn Plants Flower?

Do corn plants flower?

Yes, as it turns out, they do. We’ve been looking at that beige/yellow fluffy stuff at the top of corn for YEARS without realizing that it’s flowers. But yes, they are, and they actually play a really big part in the cycle of corn.

What Do Corn Plant Flowers Do?

One thing you probably don’t know about the standard corn we see growing in fields (usually sweetcorn/maize, or something very closely related to it) is that not only are those fluffy bunches at the top of the plant flowers, but they play a big role in corn reproduction.

That’s because the flowers at the top of the plant are male. When the wind blows, seeds are spread throughout the field which then find the female part of a nearby corn plant (these are actually located where the cobs grow, below the flowering head of the plant). This needs to happen for the corn plants to produce fruit (the corn we eat or plant again).

If you’ve read that and feel confused, don’t worry. We were at first too. But we’ve triple checked – corn plants have both male and female parts on every plant, giving it even more chance to spread and produce fruit for the next generation of corn plants to grow, or, as if often the case, to be slathered in butter and thrown on a barbecue for our enjoyment!

The point is, though, that corn plants do flower! And it’s important that they do so we can enjoy the delicious corn that we enjoy. So yes, corn plants flower, and now you can appreciate the plants even more for the strong survivors that they are!