Many years, growing corn in Kitsap County (and much of western Washington) can be a non-rewarding, frustrating exercise.
Most seed that is on the market today is hybrid. Hybrid corn requires at least 60 degrees F. (ground temperature) to germinate, otherwise the seed will just lie in the ground and rot. On many years, our ground temperature does not get to 60F until it is getting very late to plant and expect a harvest before frost.
Our wonderful sunny dry days are good for corn, but corn needs deep watering (about 1 in.) once a week. Corn needs a lot of heat units (lots of sun most of the day) and it "likes" a deep rich soil.
So, if one has the sunshine, the heat, the water and the deep soil, have at it.
I have gotten around a lot of the problems with corn, and most years have had a harvest, doing the following steps:
1. Germination: About April 15, I place a shallow bowl of corn seed, in water, under the refrigerator. I check every day or two to see that the corn is still covered with water and to see if sprouting has started. I only let the longest sprouts get about 1/4 in. long before I plant the seeds, (Plant all of the seeds, as all of the seed that is going to germinate will have done so by then). You should be careful not to break off the sprouts while planting.
2. Planting: I am now ready to plant the corn in the warm green house, but not in the ground; it is still too cold and it may frost. I fill a plant tray with 4X containers (6X are a little small) I then fill the containers 1/2 full of good potting soil. Then I drop 2 seeds into each 4X division and finish filling the containers with soil. (Some seeds will only be plump, but showing no sprouts; plant it all.) Water the filled trays well, and water every day or two. Do not let things dry out.
3. Transplanting: When the corn has come up and is about 4-6 in. high, it is ready to be transplanted. (Hopefully all frost is past). Plant the corn into well worked ground about 12-16 in. apart in 30-36 inch rows. When planting, be careful to disturb the plant roots as little as possible. If the taproot is broken, the plant may be stunted or not do well. Dig a hole about 1/2 in. deeper than the dirt depth of the container. Carefully work the plant and soil out of the container and plant it in the hole. Cover the root plug with about 1/2 in. of soil over the top. Plant 2 plants per hill. Make a little depression to water in. Water in each hill well. Corn should be planted in blocks of at LEAST 3 rows for good pollination.
4. Growing Care: Water the corn every 2-3 days for the first 2-3 weeks. Mother Nature may be of some help, but if She lets you down, you MUST water. After 2-3 weeks, corn should be deep watered (about 1 in.) once a week, but ONLY once a week. (One wants the roots to go deep.) At 3-4 weeks, dig in the row, about 2 in. from the hill and 2 in. deep. Place a tablespoon of fertilizer (5-10-10 or 10-20-20) on both sides of each corn hill and cover it. Harvest when it's ripe.
5. Good Luck and Happy Roasting Ears-Allen Miller, WSU Master Gardener