During maize development and reproduction, shading stress is an important abiotic factor influencing grain yield. To elucidate the genetic basis of shading stress in maize, an F(2:3) population derived from two inbred lines, Zhong72 and 502, was used to evaluate the performance of six traits under shading treatment and full-light treatment at two locations. The results showed that shading treatment significantly decreased plant height and ear height, reduced stem diameter, delayed day-to-tassel (DTT) and day-to-silk (DTS), and increased anthesis-silking interval (ASI). Forty-three different QTLs were identified for the six measured traits under shading and full light treatment at two locations, including seven QTL for plant height, nine QTL for ear height, six QTL for stem diameter, seven QTL for day-to-tassel, six QTL for day-to-silk, and eight QTL for ASI. Interestingly, three QTLs, qPH4, qEH4a, and qDTT1b were detected under full sunlight and shading treatment at two locations simultaneously, these QTL could be used for selecting elite hybrids with high tolerance to shading and high plant density. And the two QTL, qPH10 and qDTS1a, were only detected under shading treatment at two locations, should be quit for selecting insensitive inbred line in maize breeding procedure by using MAS method.