What to do with standing corn stalks? [Archive] - MyTractorForum.com - The Friendliest Tractor Forum and Best Place for Tractor Information

: What to do with standing corn stalks?

queen of spades
08-25-2007, 11:00 AM
Our summer garden appears to be a wash. Yellow and brown bush & stalks are mostly all that's left now (except for a few eggplant and watermelon vines).

Do most of you mow down your corn stalks & plow them under, or pull them up for compost?

08-25-2007, 11:14 AM
Haven't had a garden in 10 years but it is best to completly remove the corn stalks, and any other dead plant life, as bugs and other pests can over winter in the root sytem. I know big commercial farms leave the roots but they also use pecticides, which I didn't.

08-25-2007, 11:37 AM
:thThumbsU Usually cut down the corn stalks & feed them to the animals & plow the stubs under before winter. :bananapow

08-25-2007, 12:08 PM
If you are trying to build up the soil you could run over the stalks with a mower and till them in. That is if you have a mower that will handle them. Or if you have a chipper/shredder could cut them down, shred them and then till into the ground.

08-25-2007, 01:41 PM
What I've done has changed over the yrs. Used to have livestock so I cut the stocks and fed to them. Have also done the same thing for neighbors who had livestock.

Presently, last few yrs, I've cut the stocks and turned them under (see garden 07 thread for a pic of my tractor/tiller). Fortunately don't have to contend with bugs. If I get everthing turned under in the fall it's all broken down come spring. I turn under all the follage from garden crops.

For those with only smaller tillers, turning some vegetation under may not be feasable.

08-25-2007, 02:56 PM
I will plow corn stalks under.
My plow has a knotch coulter that cuts through the stalks.
Land side tire will flatten stalks. I went to a 2 inch narrower tire(was a 10.50 wide tire now 8.50 wide tire) and have a dual wheel on the land side. Ride is better and I have less drive line breakage.

Plow plug one time when plowing stalks under. I think my problem was the pin connecting sleeve hitch and plow together extended past plow hitch more than 2 inches. I didn't have plugging problems after I cut 1 1/2 inch inch off the pin.

Dead plant life is cheap fertilizer.

08-25-2007, 05:13 PM
Did a good job on the stalks and now you will be ready for spring! thanks; sonny

08-25-2007, 07:53 PM
I run my brush hog over them and either disc it in or plant next seasons crop between them.

08-25-2007, 11:38 PM
I never would have guessed that a garden tractor plow would do such a good job of covering corn stalks.

Good job merk!

08-26-2007, 12:45 AM
you might wanna cut em with a machete, and then use em , instead of toilet paper, to perform personal hygiene :i_praying

08-26-2007, 08:43 AM
I bunch some up for fall decoration with a pumpkin or two and the rest get sent to my mulch pile.

Mark / Ohio
08-26-2007, 12:09 PM
Many of mine were infected with fungus so they were shredded and removed from the garden never to return.

08-26-2007, 01:08 PM
We cut them down and use them to cover the strawberry plants for the winter, then burn them in the spring. I till the stubble under in the fall.

queen of spades
08-26-2007, 02:41 PM

I decided to pull them up and put them on our compost pile...


Our okra & eggplant still look great!




08-26-2007, 07:38 PM
As mentioned above, check for fungus, you don't want that around.

09-16-2007, 01:38 AM
My wife drove me like an overseer in that Corn patch.
We had Five rows, and when the drought overtook us, we picked what Ears we had, and I PULLED up what was left of the Stalks and fed them to the Neighbors Goats.
We had to do that early in the AM as it got to be up near 100 by Noon.
The Goats must have enjoyed those stalks, as they didnt leave a smidgen bit of it.

09-16-2007, 09:20 PM
Kinda on the same subject. I'm not a farmer, but am surrounded by farmland. This year, I noticed for the first time, that the farmers are round baling their stalks. I was out working on my building yesterday and the guy came in to harvest what little corn he could out of the field next to me so I asked him about it. He said that the hard, extended freeze in April wiped out the first hay cutting and, the subsequent drought zapped the rest of the cuttings. All the farmers are baling the corn stalks to feed their cattle this winter. It's either that or sell the cattle. Hutch

09-16-2007, 10:16 PM
Only had 30 rows 25ft long.
For the last few years have been selling them to various retail stores for store front decorations.
Just figured I may as well get paid to get rid of them, especially since the store manager sends his people to cut what they want.
Then disk harrow the stubble and plant my winter rye.

09-16-2007, 10:44 PM
Chopped our sweet corn stalks this year with the ole' cub and belly mower!--Did a good number on them! now I will just plow them under,---might hit them with the disk first, not sure yet!
The flour corn stalks will probably get the same treatment this year!--last year I ran them down the shredder, but as dry as they are now I think they will break up good with the mower! thanks; sonny

Walt 2002
09-16-2007, 10:47 PM
Heck, I was going to say cut them, tie them in bundles and sell them for Halloween decorations or fall decorations.

Actually, this is why we quit raising corn.

Walt Conner