When to Begin Growing BoomRule of Green Thumb: If the temperature has already hit 60°F, it’s a fine time to GROW SOME BOOM™. If you’re starting when it’s still a little cooler, but not like icicle weather, you can heat up your growing site by spreading black plastic on the soil. Remember: Warm air + warm soil + water = happy, fast-growing Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP® seeds.
Plot Some BoomPicking a happy growing spot for your Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP® seeds is essential.Fortunately, most soil in the backyard, front yard, or side yard in every U.S. state can host popcorn. Your ideal GROW SOME BOOM™ site should get tons of sun and drain easily.
(Popcorn in tiny galoshes would be super cute, but trust us: BOOM won’t grow well in a puddle.)
Prep a Boom Site
Once you claim a sunny patch of soil that drains water well, give the dirt a little TLC. Mix a couple handfuls of compost or 12-12-12 organic fertilizer into the ground to get it primed for Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP® production.
Plant Your Boom Seeds
When the night frosts say “Peace out!” for the season, it’s high time to plant. So grab an ice-cold glass of lemonade and hit the dirt.
1. Arrange the seeds in a square grid -- each 8-12 inches apart.
2. Plant the seeds 1 inch deep if it’s warm out, and 2 inches deep if it’s hot, hot, hot!
3. Water ‘em.
Block the Boom Pests
The best defense against bugs eating your Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP® before you can is a great offense. Rotating the soil before planting your seeds slows the pests’ progress, and a dusting of wood ash over the soil and young plants is an additional natural barrier.
For additional insurance, add a fence around your GROW SOME BOOM™ crop area to keep critters, and crazy strong winds, from disturbing your new plant pals.
Keep Your BOOM HappyNow that your seedlings have sprung, here are some ideas to keep your Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP® healthy and happy:
- Get in the dirt and weed. Once your stalks are taller than the weeds, they’re first in line for sunlight.
- Irrigate if needed. Keeping the soil moist — not soaked — will require your help if rain clouds aren’t holding up their part of the deal.
- Document the progress. Take pictures of your young seedlings before they’re all grown up!
Hot Summer Watering TipsThe heat is on and your Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP® is thirsty. Here are some ideas to keep it hydrated:
- Water your GROW SOME BOOM™ crop in the morning before the hot sun evaporates your hard work.
- Two inches of water weekly. Water slowly to reach the root zone — not just the surface.
- A soaker hose with tiny pores is more efficient than a sprinkler. Quench your plants’ thirst without helping the weeds.
Organic Growing TipsHere’s how to help your seedlings grow au naturel:
- Growing a mix of plants in your garden — except other kinds of corn — attracts beneficial insects that aerate the soil and combat nasty pests.
- Using organic fertilizer dressing — like compost or manure — provides nutrients gradually.
- Adding mulch around plants keeps weeds down, saves water and can even earn compliments from neighbors.
Critter Control TipsAs your GROW SOME BOOM™ crop reaches maturity, your neighborhood raccoons, birds, squirrels, and other critters will invite themselves over to feast. How to stop ‘em:
- Fence in your ears with chicken wire, unpalatable vegetation, or noisemakers like pie tins.
- Anything leaving a strong human scent — stockings filled with hair to cheap cologne -- will deter critters.
- Raccoons don’t like spicy stuff. Sprinkle some chili powder/hot pepper on the corn silks to keep their hungry paws at bay.
Get Your Compost OnDecomposed organic matter, AKA compost, improves soil’s fertility, texture, and ability to hold water -- all of which help keep a GROW SOME BOOM™ crop vigorous. How to make your own pile:
- Gather dead plants from your garden, lawn clippings, and kitchen scraps (no meat or oily foods).
- Enclose in a plastic container or outdoor pile against a wall to preserve moisture.
- When the pile starts looking like dirt, it’s ready to spread 1-2 inches between plants.
Easy Ways to Banish WeedsKeep weeds from hogging the soil and your GROW SOME BOOM™ crop will thrive.
- Weed for a few minutes whenever you visit the garden – especially when soil is moist after rain. You can cover remaining weeds with clear plastic and have the sun bake ‘em away.
- Non-toxic organic herbicides are often vinegar-based and work by burning off the waxy cuticle holding water inside the plants. They only kill what gets coated, so be careful where you spray.
It’s Shelling Season!You’ve put in 100 days of TLC with your Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP® crop. And now it’s nearly time to reap the rewards. Follow these tips to shell your popcorn easily.
- Make sure your popcorn is completely dry before attempting to shell. If the leaves and stalks are brown and the corn is hard, you should be good to go!
- Use a spoon to pry a row off the ear. Provided it comes off easy, you can begin shelling the entire thing.
- Use your thumb to nudge the remaining kernels off the entire ear.
How Do I Know When to Harvest?!?It’s generally popcorn picking time when the stalks and leaves on your popcorn crop turn brown, and the kernels have hardened. This is typically around September for most folks but can vary depending on your weather/whatnot. But that doesn’t mean you need to rush! In fact, we recommend leaving them in your garden to dry until the first frost threatens. Simply peel back the ears and check to see if your corn has hardened. If so, you’re ready to start picking!
Getting Frosty? Bring Your Boom Inside!Cooler weather is coming. And that means it’s primetime to pick your BOOM! To ensure your popcorn has plenty of pop, pull your corn ears off the stalk prior to the first frost. Then store in a dry, cool space and let your corn completely dry. (To expedite drying, let your corn soak in sunlight for a day.) Once your corn has completely hardened, you can start shelling and soon taste the fruits of your labors!
Let’s Get To Popping!Your popcorn is dry and your chompers are ready to feast up your Angie's BOOMCHICKAPOP® crop! But first, put your popcorn to the true test: will it pop! Start by test popping a handful of kernels every few days. If your corn pops into something fluffy and delicious, you’re great to go! If not, wait another couple of days and try again.
Ensuring a proper pop!Are your chompers ready to taste the rewards of your BOOM! crop? Here are some home-popping tips:
- Pour a single layer of your BOOM kernels into a saucepan
- Lightly cover the bottom of the pan with cooking oil. Cover and place it on your stovetop set to high heat.
- Gently (and continuously) shake the pan to evenly distribute heat. After two minutes, your popcorn should start popping!
- Remove the pan from heat once there are more than 3 seconds between “pops”. Then season, serve and enjoy!
CROSS-POLLINATE YOUR CROP
Fill your GROW SOME BOOM™ ears with popable kernels by cross-pollinating by hand.
When tassels on top begin shedding pollen, shake the yellow pollen dust into a paper bag.
Once silk is visible, sprinkle the loose pollen onto each ear three mornings in a row.
After pollination, the ears should mature in about two weeks.
GROWING IN YOUR AREA
The trick to growing Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP successfully is knowing just when to plant. Here’s a handy-dandy map that show you the perfect time to plant in your area.
If you live in Zone A, plant your Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP® seeds starting May 10.
If you live in Zone B, plant your Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP® seeds starting May 1.
If you live in Zone C, plant your Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP® seeds starting March 15.
If you live in Zone D, plant your Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP® seeds starting March 1.
KEEP YOUR BOOM GROWING IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION
If Mother Nature takes a break, your Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP® is sure to get thirsty. To keep plants happy and healthy, water them twice a week.
Keep knee-high Angie’s BOOMCHICKAPOP stalks on the straight and narrow by forming little dirt mounds at the base of each stalk.
Regularly show your GROW SOME BOOM patch a little TLC with a healthy dose of compost and mulch, and regular weeding.