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Botanical name: Zea mays

Plant type: Vegetable

USDA Hardiness Zones: 4, 5, 6, 7, 8

Sun exposure: Full Sun

Soil type: Loamy

Soil pH: Neutral

Sweet corn is an annual with yellow, white, and bi-colored ears. A long, frost-free growing season is necessary after planting. Sweet corn is wind-pollinated, so it should be planted in blocks, rather than in single rows. Early, mid, and late-season varieties extend the harvest. If you miss the optimal harvest time, corn will go downhill fast as sugars convert to starch.


  • Corn is picky about its soil. Work in aged manure or compost the fall before planting and let over winter in the soil.
  • Starting seeds indoors is not recommended.
  • Plant seeds outdoors two weeks after the last spring frost date.
  • Make sure soil temperature is above 60 degrees for successful germination. (Up to 65 for super sweet varieties.) In colder zones, the ground can be warmed by a black plastic cover if necessary. Plant seeds through holes.
  • Plant seeds 1 inch deep, 4 to 6 inches apart. Space rows 30 to 36 inches apart.
  • Thin new plants to 8 to 12 inches apart when they grow to 4 inches tall.
  • For sufficient pollination, plan your plot right. Don’t plant two long rows, rather, plant corn blocks of at least four rows.
  • You may choose to fertilize at planting time, corn is meant to grow rapidly. If you are confident that the soil is adequate, this can be skipped.
  • Water well at planting time.



  • Be careful not to damage the roots when weeding.
  • Soil must be well drained and able to keep consistent moisture.
  • In dry conditions, be sure to keep corn well watered due to its shallow roots. Water at a rate of 5 gallons per sq yard. Mulch helps reduce evaporation.
  • When the plants are 4 to 5 inches tall, thin them to stand 16 to 23 inches apart.


Click on the links below to learn how to manage different pests in the garden!


  • Harvest when tassels begin to turn brown and cobs start to swell. Kernels should be full and milky.
  • Pull ears downward and twist to take off stalk.
  • Sweet corn varieties lose their sweetness soon after harvesting.
  • Prepare for eating or preserving immediately after picking.
  • Sweet corn freezes well, especially if removed from ears before freezing.

Recommended Varieties


There are three types of sweet corn: Normal, sugar enhanced and super sweet. Each one contains a different level of sucrose, changing the flavor and texture of the corn. Sweeter varieties will stay sweeter for longer after harvest.

  • ‘Iochief’ Midseason normal-sugar variety. Yellow.
  • ‘Silver Queen’ normal sugar-variety. Resistant to some bacterial diseases. White.
  • ‘Challenger Crisp n Sweet’ supersweet variety, resistant to some diseases, high yield. Yellow.
  • ‘Pristine’ sugar enhanced variety, good taste. White.


Cooking Notes

If too much hot pepper or spice has been added to a soup or stew, adding a can of sweet corn can help.

Wit & Wisdom

Baby corn is produced from regular corn plants that are harvested early, while the ears are immature. Regular sweet corn, sugar-enhanced sweet corn, and supersweet corn varieties can be used, along with a few varieties that are specific for baby corn.

If your corn shucks harder than usual, prepare for a cold winter.



I got raccoons that are

By ChrisM2155 on March 25

I got raccoons that are really annoying at night I hear them running in the trees like there getting chased away from something else and what ever that thing is it's chewing away my ears before I can get to them. What can I do to stop these little bandits and also do ants bother the corn cause by the end of August there everywhere in the yard is the something I can do to stop them as well?

If it helps, here are our

By Almanac Staff on March 27

If it helps, here are our tips on managing raccoons in the garden, especially when it comes to corn:

Iam putting in a garden this

By Bill Paolucci on February 28

Iam putting in a garden this spring, fairly good size... 40" by 100",, i broke new groung in the fall and tilled under, planning on growing a variety of vegtables.corn, peppers, beans ,ect...i tilled in compost with chicken manure... question is ;; how do you keep the deer out of the garden ?

Hi, Bill, Our best advice for

By Almanac Staff on March 3

Hi, Bill,
Our best advice for deer in the garden is probably that of our readers and the users of this site. (Some of their ideas are ones we've proposed  to them!). Here are a few of readers' recommendations for dealing with deer in the garden:
• A low (2ft) wire mesh, such as chicken wire, will deter small animals. If you have deer in the area place an additional high (3ft) wire or string 3ft outside the low fence and tie some rag flags to it. The deer will not jump the high fence and low fence both. Something about the combination makes them wary of being trapped. Use rot-resistant wood posts.
• Look for coyote urine at your garden supply store or online. Rodents won't come within yards of the smell. It's also good for fending off deer and other nuisance critters without harming them.
• I found the best thing for deer is human hair. This is very easy to get and free. You can go to just about any salon and ask for clippings. The longer hair works best. Then you just decorate like tinsle on a tree. The hair smells like us. This helps with just about any anilmal. Slugs can't cross hair either. (See if your local barber will save a bag of hair clippings for you, scatter it around your garden.)
• Deer hate fishing pole string. They can't see it so when they feel it scares them off. If you put up poles around the edge of your garden and string it around it should take care of the problem.
• I have a lot of deer, I found that by planting rosemary helps but I also found rosemary oil which is fantastic for keeping the deer away from my veggies and flowers
 I have heard that if you put a bar of Irish Spring soap in your garden the deer will not come near it. I would assume that with 1/2 an acre you would need a few.
Good luck!
• Hair clippings do help. Also randomly placing old knee high stockings containing Irish Spring soap shavings helps, as does hanging pie pans around. I think the key to any of these home remedies is not to use the same method for too long at the time. Rotate the remedy when you see deer venturing back into the forbidden territory.
All of these suggestions are at the bottom of this page:

I use a small cheese grater

By Deb Hughes on March 15

I use a small cheese grater for Ivory soap. The original kind. At least one bar or more if needed , I've been using this method for about 4 yrs now & it's never failed me. Hope this helps..

My dad used to plant sweet

By aac1953

My dad used to plant sweet corn; then, after a period of time he would plant Kentucky white half-runner green beans close to the corn. The beans would grow up the corn. Is this unusual? It seemed to work for him; by the way, he was a big Farmers Almanac fan !!!

The corn provides a natural

By atoy ota

The corn provides a natural trellis for the green bean vine to cling to for support. The green bean plant takes nitrogen from the air and deposits it into its root system making the soil rich in nitrogen. Corns need nitrogen and they get this from the nitrogen provided by the green bean plants. Your Dad was way ahead of all the "Organic Farmers" in planting corns and green beans together. When he harvests the green beans, especially when the corns are tassling and silking; he is helping in the corn pollination process. Every time he bumps into a corn plant; millions of pollen from the tassel will fall and some of the pollen will land into the silk and pollinate the corn. For a detailed information on the subject you may check the subject: Nitrogen Fixation - Rhizobia

Wouldn't the beans (the one's

By Virginia H.

Wouldn't the beans (the one's that would wrap around corn) suffocate the corn? If not, how far apart should the corn be from the beans? Can u plant in a row corn, beans, corn, peas, etc.?

is there at anytime pryor to

By frank hubbard

is there at anytime pryor to harvest that I should stop watering? My concern is root rot with too much water.

We planted our garden this

By pyrael

We planted our garden this year on memorial day ( we are in central NY state near albany). All purchased plants. This is our first year attempting corn (the kids wanted to plant like indians) so we have 1 squash plant in the center of a square of 4 bean plants about 9 to 12 inches away from the squash and then the corn farthest out a few inches from the beans. I am noticing after all this time that the corn is now 3 to 4 feet tall and a few are starting to tassle (I think - it looks like seeds popping from the top) no ears yet though. Is this correct? Also, the sqaush plants are not doing as well as the ones we planted elsewhere by themselves. The beans are about as high as the corn and are producing already. I have probably 15 to 20 beans per plant so far. Can I start picking the beans or should I wait until they are all finished growing? (1st time for beans also)

It sounds like you were

By Almanac Staff

It sounds like you were aiming to plant the "three sisters"—corn, beans, and pumpkin or squash. And, from what you describe, it sounds like you did it in reverse. See here for advice on doing this:
We do not recommend removing and transplanting the corn at this point. Corn typically needs to be planted in blocks to pollinate effectively and it is not clear that your stalks are close enough. (The cluster described for the Three Sisters is block, albeit a small one.)
Hard to know what's up with the squash.
Pick the beans that are ready as that will encourage more.

Thanks for the info! Next

By Pyrael

Thanks for the info! Next time we will do it the right way!

We grow a large gardwn evwry

By brian sells

We grow a large gardwn evwry year here in carson city nv. Corn make s up half . 7ft. Nice even ears. 2 yrs ago. A bunch came up on its own. We let it grow also plantedmuch more. The volanteers looked great. Then tasseled and grew runt at three feet. The plantwd corn grew great im told monsano alters thwre seed preventing making seed. So this year we wanted to grow organic and eventully cultivate our own seed strain so we did all organic sweet nice stalk looks very good 3ft summer just started. Oh hell no itw all tasseled out at 3 an a half feet. Loosing colur. Yea it maturing. Whats going on

Three-foot-high corn with

By Almanac Staff

Three-foot-high corn with only a spike tassel and no sign of an ear is an indication of barren soil. (Are you rotating the corn?) Do a soil test to check for missing nutrients. Your local coop extension should be able to help you.

My maize plants are growing

By Paul R Taylor

My maize plants are growing well (in London UK), but the stems are bifurcating. Should these bifurcations be lopped off, or should I let these grow?

please tell me how to keep


please tell me how to keep squerils out of my garden they eat my peaches

An aluminum pan with sliced

By Becky C

An aluminum pan with sliced cucumber will keep squirrels away. It works for me in my garden. they don't dig!

Go to our squirrel page at

By Almanac Staff

Go to our squirrel page at for tips.

Do you sucker your corn or

By Dr. Fields

Do you sucker your corn or just let it go?

In a healthy crop, removing

By Almanac Staff

In a healthy crop, removing the suckers, also called tillers, makes little difference to the harvest yield or health of the plant, since they usually appear later in the season and can't compete with the main stalk. Their formation may indicate healthy conditions; some varieties tend to form suckers more often. If the crop had been damaged early in the season, or the plants are widely spaced, a corn plant may respond by growing suckers; in these cases, sometimes those suckers will produce harvestable ears. Otherwise, in a healthy, closely spaced crop, they won't usually.
If you'd like to remove suckers, only do so when they are very small, to prevent damage to the stalk; removing them when they are larger will weaken the plant and invite insects and diseases.
For more information, you might be interested in:

I live in middle Tennessee


I live in middle Tennessee and I wanted to know if it's too late to plant late corn. How long from planting should I expect to harvest? Thanks so much!

Sybil, I'd say go for it! As

By Jennifer Shatzman Lord

Sybil, I'd say go for it! As mine is just starting to silk and will likely harvest in less than 2 weeks, the summer has barely begun! As always, keep the soil loose, plant in blocks'ish (mine is 8 rows of 14 ears each) where you have good ventilation, and mulch after germination. Following a tip from old NC farmers, I plant mine 2 to a hole, 18"apart and rows spaced at 36". I DO NOT THIN! Our garden was prepped with rabbit manure, then I side-dressed with 10-10-10 ONCE. Our corn is over 7' tall, with three ears on each.Good Luck.

Ooops, did I mention that I

By Jennifer Shatzman Lord

Ooops, did I mention that I am on the central KY border in TN via NC and originally from Keene, NH. So, I have picked up a few tips here and abouts!

Planting corn before June 1

By Almanac Staff

Planting corn before June 1 is ideal for good yield in your area.  The dates of maturity depend on the variety but they range from 45 days to 75 days.

I have a lot of extra sweet

By joev

I have a lot of extra sweet corn left from my resent planting first time out as a farmer. what can I do for storage so I can use it next year ..thank you for any help

Keep the leftover seeds in

By Almanac Staff

Keep the leftover seeds in the packet they came in. Place the packet inside of a zip-close plastic bag. Store the bag in the freezer.

My garden was a bust this

By Jimsong

My garden was a bust this Spring. Very poor germination for garden seeds, very successful germination for weeds.
I turned most of it under, and am planning to replant corn, squash, and beans.
I have planted squash and beans this late (mid June), and had a decent harvest, but I have never plated corn this late.
What are my chances?
I am in between Fort Worth and Waco Texas.

Corn germination occurs in

By Almanac Staff

Corn germination occurs in soil with temperatures between 55 and 85 degrees F. If the soil temperature rises above 85 degrees F, corn may not germinate well and production may be stunted.

I have had problems with my

By gayle smith

I have had problems with my corn and my broccoli. 1st the corn; I grow corn in 15 foot rows 12- 18 inches apart and I have one section where the rows are a total of three rows spread a total of ten ft wide. I have another section of two rows two feet apart 12ft long and 12-18 inches apart. some of the corn stop growing at about four feet and start producing silk. this in turn leads to small ears. on two rows that are 15ft long, the rows are approx. 2 1/2 feet wide so I therefore make two rows within the one row. some corn grows to full ht and some don't. what am I doing wrong. now to my broccoli. I grow broccoli all the time and this is the first time where I bought the plants already growing; about 6inches high. I planted them 18 inches apart in three rows 7 feet long. that are 2 1/2 feet apart (a total of fifteen plants. this year they started sprouting heads when the plants were only 1-2 feet tall and the heads never really matured, the heads started spreading out and budding when the plants were only 2 feet tall. what did I do wrong? I know you are busy so I will wait for your response with that in mind and will be patient in your answers. please email me with the answer if possible.


There are several possible

By Almanac Staff

There are several possible causes for the uneven corn in your garden. Weather (too dry or too wet; warm and then a sudden cold spell) or your soil may have low pH. Test the soil and correct low pH by adding limestone . Phosphorus deficiency sometimes caused by wet, cold soil can also cause uneven growth.
Excessive heat is the main reason for loose shaggy broccoli heads. Planting too early in the spring can also cause heads to mature too early. Temperatures below 40 degrees F cause young plants to bolt. Drought conditions or fluctuating moisture will also cause broccoli heads to loosen. Some varieties bolt quicker than others.

For the first time I wanna

By manjunath m

For the first time I wanna grow the maize.. I don't have any idea about it. I need ur assistance....

Please see our growing advice

By Almanac Staff

Please see our growing advice at the top of this page.

Your information on the

By Millard Waltz

Your information on the spacing of the sweet corn plants was extremely useful. In European books on gardening I have found a great deal of misinformation, even in otherwise very informative books. I have usually been quite successful for two reasons. First, I plant cover crops of winter rye in the previous fall and turn it under (by hand) in March. Second, I use a liquid fertilizer made from stinging nettles and comfrey several times during the summer. Our summer monsoon comes at the right time in July, although the temperatures remain in the low 70-80s. Sweet corn from one's own garden is a real treat!

Trying to grow a hybrid on

By plane1286

Trying to grow a hybrid on deck sweet corn seed in a 24 inch pot. Seedlings emerge healthy and grow to approximately 3 inches and then the leaves shrivel and the seedling dies. Leaves seem to be of a light brown color post-mortem. Any advice or recommendation for successful growing? Thank you in advance.

We haven't tested this

By Almanac Staff

We haven't tested this variety though we've heard mixed reviews about its germination success. Sometimes there is stunted growth because the soil isn't above 55 degrees. Also keep soil on the drier side and go with the wider spacing. We do think the germination may be a product issue, not yours.

this year i have grown corn

By zeenat

this year i have grown corn and will have the advices from u all thanks it might help me ,will have good crop i hope ,thanks ,zeenat

when the ears begin to silk

By wayne warnning

when the ears begin to silk drop a couple of drops of mineral oil on the silk.

I live in south east Georgia.

By First timer

I live in south east Georgia. The soil here is really sandy. I want to plant a garden with a variety of different vegetables and fruits. I am really worried about the soil, but I can't afford to go buy special soil to mix in to the soil we already have. Is this going to be a problem for my garden? Also our neighbor has like thirty cats that hang around his house. I am worried about the cats getting into the garden and killing my plants. They climb fences and so fencing it off wont really help. How can I keep the cats out without harming the cats? Thank you for any help you can give me!!!

Mix in compost, compost and

By Almanac Staff

Mix in compost, compost and more compost. Lots of recycling centers have compost for free. And if you haven't got enough compost, just add any dead organic material as it becomes available (like dead leaves as a mulch, some dried manure etc). It will eventually break down, and improve the soil quality.
In terms of your neighbor's cats in the garden:
Some readers say to try spraying a solution of a little cayenne and water.  It's nontoxic to the animals, doesn't hurt the plants, cats hate the smell. Reapply after rain.
You could also try placing moth balls around the edges of your garden.
There are also commercial cat repellents that you can get at garden centers or online at pet supply stores and gardening supply centers. Make sure that the repellent that you get is safe for any children, plants, pets, or other animals etc. that may be around. 

Everything I see on corn says

By IAmCrackheadJim

Everything I see on corn says to plant them close together and to then thin them out when they are 4 inches tall or so. The seed pack says plant 4" apart then thin to 12" this sits says plant 9"-12" apart then thin to 16"-23" apart when 4" tall. Why plane them so close together to start? Is this when the pollination occurs? I thought it occurred in a more mature plant. Any information would be much appreciated. Thank you.

Definitely follow the

By Almanac Staff

Definitely follow the direction on your seed packet.  Spacing depends on the variety of corn you are planting. Also we adjusted our spacing on this page after viewing more typical sweet corn varieties.
The reason that we plant extra seeds is because some do not germinate--plus you want to thin out the poorer seedings, saving the best plant from each spot.
Pollination happens once you have the silks. We plant it blocks of rows instead of a long, single row because corn is wind-pollinated and the pollen would distribute better this way.
I hope we're answering your question! All the best with some juicy garden-fresh corn!

This is packed with

By Carl Bj

This is packed with information, However, after going through the information I could not find how long it takes to develop from planting to maturity.

It depends on the variety,

By Almanac Staff

It depends on the variety, but the days to maturity are usually about 65 to 75 days. 

we have red wing black birds

By gannon farm

we have red wing black birds invade our corn and eating the top of the ears and found ears eaten on the ground. we have tried to scare them off by: yelling, running toward garden, fake snakes, fake owl, wind mills, AND PIE PANS TIED TO POST. PLEASE HELP WITH SOME IDEALS OF KEEPING THE RED WING BLACK BIRDS OUT OF THE GARDEN????????/ THANK YOU

My remedy serves two

By Jennifer Shatzman Lord

My remedy serves two purposes! I went to the dollar-type store and bought 2 dozen very shiny red whirly twirler things (stop laughing, you know what I mean) and fashioned them up on my fence perimeter (40x30). Not only does the movement and slapping noise deter birds, but you will have a moment or two to remember something pleasant while you are toiling about!

we have always had good luck

By repomanswife1

we have always had good luck hanging wind chimes and refelectors about to keep birds away from the garden

We understand! Here is a very

By Almanac Staff

We understand! Here is a very helpful page on how to deter redwing blackbirds from your sweet corn:

What often is most effective is a combination of visual and auditory deterrants. For example, combine scare-eye balloons with auditory repellents like shellcrackers or distress calls.

i have harvested some great

By Jeremy P

i have harvested some great corn from our veggie patch in temperate sydney (Australia) can I keep the plants going or should I remove them all and start again?

What is the optimal pH for

By JBush

What is the optimal pH for sweet Corn?

Sweet corn will adapt to a

By Almanac Staff

Sweet corn will adapt to a wide range of soil pH. However, optimum growth is obtained at pH 6.0 to 6.5.

Can I start the corn inside?

By Delores Feeken

Can I start the corn inside? If so when should I start it

Delores, it's simply not

By Jennifer Shatzman Lord

Delores, it's simply not worth it unless you have a very big area. But my experience is that corn will be happy enough to stay where they are born, remaining in the same soil (house) and in the same environment (family). If you do, plan on transplanting your 4-7" seedlings after the ground has warmed and the air temps remain above 62ish, otherwise you may lose them to less-than-optimal conditions. Good luck, stay dirty!

You can if you want to. Right

By Nerdygirly

You can if you want to. Right now, I am using sweet corn for my science project. The corn that has grown the best is the corn that I have exposed to a homemade CO2 formula that is indoors and under a heat lamp. So far, my corn is 4.5 feet high!

I've heard of people growing

By Chris McNeely

I've heard of people growing dwarf corn varieties, but for normal sweet corn, you need full sun plus it pollinates best when sown in a block, so for planting, a minimum area of a 4-foot-square is required.

Every year, I bring the

By Robert abel

Every year, I bring the family together and we pick until about 10AM. Then, we chop both ends of the ear about an inch or so back, shuck down to the last layer of corn shuck, and stack in the freezer. No more prep! Last year we put up 400+ ears in this fashion and had fresh corn on the cob all year long! It doesn't spoil, doesn't freezer burn,and it tastes like it just came from the garden! When it's eating time, just drop the ears into a pot w/ a pinch or so of salt and boil for 15-20 minutes! Then, remove the remainder of the shuck and eat! I've used this method for 20+yrs and have never had a single problem!

Does the corn really taste

By Linda S.

Does the corn really taste fresh? I've tried freezing corn on the cob after picking, both shucked and unshucked and the problem is the corn seems soggy when we cook it later, not the plump fresh picked texture and flavor we had hoped for.

Try Bodacious corn. It

By l.berry

Try Bodacious corn. It freezes well. The trick is to blanche the corn before freezing it. Shuck the corn, then put ears in boiling water for 5-6 minutes, then drain and immediately plunge into ice water (this stops the enzyme growth that makes the corn soggy). I use a medium size cooler to fill with ice water

i have multi coloured

By lizzy007

i have multi coloured sweetcorn growing and wandering now my sweetcorn has a very pink beard haha when will it be ready to harvest ...and any other colour i grow really what is the best way to know they are ready to eat......thank you

After those silky strands

By Almanac Staff

After those silky strands appear, you'll harvest in about 20 days. Wait until the silks become dry and brown and the kernels are smooth, plump and pop open when punctured with a thumbnail. Some ears mature more quickly than others.

Ok Im from Southern Colorado

By Corey Pearson

Ok Im from Southern Colorado and noticed that on here it dose not show a plant in door date for corn. I start my Corn indoors to help with growth and an earlier maturing date. I start my corn one month
(beginning of May) and always have a better crop than everyone else that plants out doors from seed. I plant my corn starts in the garden one week after suggested planting date. Try it you might like the results.

I live in arizona. My corn is

By Joe At CDS

I live in arizona. My corn is growing well but I can't stop the lizards from eating it. What can I due to stop them.

It may give you relief to

By Almanac Staff

It may give you relief to know the lizards are actually eating the insects and not trying to eat the corn. Lizards cause no measurable damage to plants in gardens and should be left alone.

My corn has ants and aphids.

By D.Johnson

My corn has ants and aphids. Is the corn safe to eat?


The ants are probably there

By Almanac Staff

The ants are probably there because of the aphids. They shouldn't be a problem but you can blast some insecticidal soap spray to get rid of the aphids and the ants will move on. As long as you are not using chemicals, just wash off your harvest and it is safe to eat.

Does Candy Corn have

By Lynn McIntyre

Does Candy Corn have yellowish white tassles or reddish brown tassles. I planted Candy Corn & Bodacious and can't remember which is which.

Kandy Korn has a white silk

By Almanac Staff

Kandy Korn has a white silk and easily to spot because it's a bit colorful with red and green color on the husks and stalks. Its ears grow a little bigger (about 9 inches versus 8 inches for Bodacious). It takes lonerg to get to maturity (91 versus 75 days). Bodacious is one of our favorite yellow corns. Enjoy!

Hello:) How late can I plant

By Steph A.

Hello:) How late can I plant corn in NJ? I want a mini cornfield for a fall decoration, so a bumper crop is not a concern. I just want some decent looking stalks for decoration. Thanks:)

In New Jersey, sweet corn is

By Almanac Staff

In New Jersey, sweet corn is usually planted in April and can go as late as early July. The days from germination to harvest usually range 70 to 80 days, but it all depends on the variety. Visit your local garden store and see if they have a seed packet and the days to maturity are on the back. There may be some quick-growing varieties that are 60 days.

I have serious one here. I

By william S

I have serious one here. I shucked my sweet corn at 10am. I had it laying on the counter for the whole day until 6pm. Can the sweetness avaporate and not be sweet corn anymore? Can it turn into regular corn? The farmer I got it from said its the best sweet corn he has had for 10 yrs.

"Sweet corn" is a variety of

By Almanac Staff

"Sweet corn" is a variety of corn so that won't change. However, the corn turns from sugar to starch very quickly (within 24 hours). This is why the old adage was "start the water boiling, run to the patch, pick and husk the corn, run back to the pot, cook the corn, and eat or process immediately." Put corn in the refrigerator right away to keep it cool, not on the counter. If you can't eat corn from the garden, try to eat it within 24 hours of being picked. If that's not feasible, eat within a day or two.

How long can we expect our

By Rosalinda

How long can we expect our corn to last... I sell roadside and want to know when the corn is no longer sellable..... thanks

People take the trouble to

By Almanac Staff

People take the trouble to grow corn because corn really tastes best straight from the garden. If that's not possible, corn tastes freshest within 24 hours because most varieties convert their sugar to starch after that. Otherwise, try to use the corn within 1 to 2 days and do not husk until just prior to cooking. Put corn in the fridge as soon as possible so it keeps. You can also freeze corn. See our blog:

My corn is tall and has baby

By Valerie Rose

My corn is tall and has baby cobs on it. I feel like it has stopped growing and they are starting to turn brown on the top tussels and the silk around the top of the cobs.Can I still save them so my cobs will get fatter?I added manure in early june The bottoms are turning color reddish brown too.

Not sure that you are going

By Almanac Staff

Not sure that you are going to get fatter corn. Try hilling soil from between the rows around the stalks. This causes the corn to send out more roots and may help the cobs grow bigger.

Each corn stock has two ears,

By Farmer Oz

Each corn stock has two ears, one mature and the second, lower ear mostly immature. Is there anything useful that can be done with these immature ears?

Pick the mature corn and

By Almanac Staff

Pick the mature corn and leave the second immature corn on the stalk to finish growing.

full tassels for about ten

By michael willen

full tassels for about ten days, but no silks present for pollination... what's up?

Tassels do appear before the

By Almanac Staff

Tassels do appear before the silk. But if it's been 10 days you should see some silk by now. Check your corn for insects. They may have eaten the silk. Or, little or no water when tassles and silk are developing can cause problems.

Microwaving Corn on the Cob.

By Paul W Hassler

Microwaving Corn on the Cob. I prepare corn on the cob by microwaving the cobs intact for 2 min per cob. Then cut off the stalk end and the corn either slides out silk free or peels very easily. Tasty and easy to do.

the top 3-4 inches of my

By laine wiegard

the top 3-4 inches of my sweet corn has popped open. the stalks look good no worms that i csn see. but now tge ears are ruined. what am i doing wrong.

Hi Laine, Are you saying that

By Almanac Staff

Hi Laine, Are you saying that the ears didn't develop? When corn doesn't develop kernels at the top, there are a variety of reasons:  Did you plant too close?  Corn prefers to be planted 9 inches to one foot apart. Is your corn getting enough potassium and nitrogen? If your soil isn't providing this, fertilize. Did you plant enough rows? (Corn needs to planted in big blocks for good pollinating.) Did you have dry weather during silking? Corn needs contstant water due to its shallow roots; we use a soaker hose. Hope this helps identify the problem and solution.

For corn worms just google

By george milton

For corn worms just google corn worms.. Spray Bacillus thuringiensis, an organic control for caterpillars, when silks turn brown to prevent corn ear worms from entering. Bacillus thuringiensis (or Bt) is a bacteria and is safe to use around children and pets. next you can Mix molasses and pyrethrin bait and paint around the base of corn plants to kill the adults as they emerge from the soil. Pyrethrin is an organic pesticide made from a variety of chrysanthemum.

Other things that insects hate are jalapeno juice sprayed on plants and borax powder sprinkled about also mostly harmless to people in small to moderate amounts but all sorts of bugs run for the hills.

Falling over could also be because of poor soil depth corn goes pretty deep like 3 feet so if you have hard or shallow roots they cannot support a 10-12 foot plant upright so consider getting an auger for the planting holes which you fill with sand and good composted soil

just pluck the worms out with

By Jenilee Graham

just pluck the worms out with tweezers. thats what i spent an hour doing today, but it will be worth it. i had 2 to 3 worms per ear, so im glad i did this, otherwise i may not of had any corn for myself.

My G90 sweet corn is taller

By gary saine

My G90 sweet corn is taller than I am and is now beginning to tossel out at the top of the stalk, but still no ears are forming, what is the problem.

Just keep waiting,i waited a

By Cows go moo

Just keep waiting,i waited a long time for my ears to grow too and after a while they grew .

Hi, Gary, G90 is a late

By Almanac Staff

Hi, Gary, G90 is a late producer. Give it some time. How far apart did you plant? If planting was a bit thick, it may just slow down development as silks are 90% water. Give it some water and we hope you'll see something within a week or so.

for the second year in a row

By T W N

for the second year in a row my corn crop has been knocked down by high winds and much rain. This year I tried to protect the corn early but it had grown to a height of about 3 to 4 ft and it is now laying flat on the grown. What am Idoing wrong? Is my planting not correct or just bad luck? If I leave alone will the stalks stand back up under the sun? Totally frustrated.

i have this happen every

By cheeze

i have this happen every year. I just go and stand them back up by hand and mound dirt up at the base . Then just wait for them to recover . I have seen farmers fields where an entire section is knocked over , ugly but docent look to effect production.

This happens to me every year

By Linda S. Miller

This happens to me every year as well. I live in a spot where winds whip through and can be severe. I was hoping for a solution here. I have corn lying down at the moment. So discouraging - this is maybe the fifth year. I have a decent sized garden, but not fields to rotate crops. I guess I will try more steady watering next year. Love corn, and it grows well for me, it just always gets blown down. Tired of this outcome.

That's unfortunate, to say

By Almanac Staff

That's unfortunate, to say the least. This is called stalk lodging, and it is relatively common. If the stalk is not broken, it might recover.
Lodging has three main causes: severe weather, European corn borer, and stalk rot disease. Expert advise suggests reducing stress in the corn field by, for example, choosing the proper hybrid, plant population, providing adequate moisture at critical times, insect control, and crop rotation. Since you mention that this is the second year in a row this has happened, consider crop rotation: Is this the same field used last year? Failure to properly rotate crops can contribute to their vulnerability.
Also consider contacting your local agricultural extension service for advice specific to your region. Best wishes.


By Anonymous

Thanks for idea


By Anonymous

No just suck them with a vacuum no put what ever fertilizer you said


By Anonymous

We planted our corn and they got about 2 feet tall then stopped growing, we have a few corn on the stalk, but they look miniature. Is this a failure of not watering enough?

It may be a pollination

By Almanac Staff

It may be a pollination issue. Corn grows best in a block system--four short rows instead of long individual rows--as the pollen (which is carried by wind) can better reach the silk to fill out the ears. At this stage, you could try hand pollinating by rubbing the tassles on the new silk. Also, corn is a heavy feeder and drinker. Side dress your crop with a high-nitrogen fertilizer.

My corn is doing something

By Nicole P. Davis

My corn is doing something similar. We have about 8 rows at 120ft length per row, Rows spaced about 2-2.5ft apart. So basically it would be a 120'x20' area of nothing but corn. However, one end of the thrives and produces so absolutely beautiful with full, bright 6-8ft stalks. The middle part on the other end will be yellow and some only make it to a foot, then stop, where others make it to about 3ft then stop. Then (occasionally) we will get to the absolute end with medium 4-6ft stalks and those vary each planting. That end always does the worst. Thought it might be the soil on that end, but nothing is being done any different on one end or the other. Is it possible that the rows are too long and not getting enough wind to pollinate? The surroundings on each end make it believable. The pretty end is closer to my house and lots of open land, the other end is close to brush and woods (there is a dirt road with ditches between garden and woods). I am trying to figure out if I need to reorganize my rows this year or have the soil tested again?

Wormy corn

By Anonymous

I had my first garden in years last year. My biggest problem was worms in my corn. Every single ear I harvested had a worm eating it from the top. Somebody help me!

when the corn starts to silk

By wayne warnning

when the corn starts to silk drop a few drops of mineral oil on them this will prevent the worms from getting in them

product called "

By cheeze

product called " Sevin"
treats most garden pest
i have used for this exact reason


By Anonymous

Ask a farmer about the spray they put on their corn that discourages worms from eating the ears of corn.

wormey corn

By Anonymous

U could try using mineral oil(small amount) on silk cuz the moths lay their eggs on the silk an when they hatch they start to eat right away. I tried it 1 year. It seems like alot of trouble but it does work for the most part

You may have waited too late

By David Smith 5

You may have waited too late to plant the corn. The later you plant, the problems you have with worms.

wormy corn

By Almanac Staff

Sounds as if you have corn-ear worm. Be sure to rotate to a new spot of earth this year. Wait 'til the ears start to fill out (AFTER the pollen gets to the silks) and put 1 or 2 drops of mineral oil on the silks. Hope this helps.

Corn Silk

By sggoat

Corn silk is edible--why bother? You can even fry them like cellophane noodles

shucking corn

By Nanette Turner

The easiest way I know of to get the silk out is to shuck the corn from the bottom. I've done this for eons and I have very little silk left. What is left comes off easily if you use a 'finger nail' brush and gently brush from the base to the tip. This gets any off the corn silk left behind, I do this when washing the ears in the sink

removing silks from ears of corn

By Deran

A air pick with an air compresor set on about 30 psi does a good job of blowing silks off corn after shucking. But remember high pressure will pucture kernals.

Not removing them

By Anonymous

It always doesn't work so try putonghua fertilizer on them or just like suck them with a vacuum


By Anonymous

I love to grow corn but worms worms worms keep coming and eating my plant what do I do ??????!!!!!

Just take a pair of tweezers

By Jenilee Graham

Just take a pair of tweezers and pluck them out. I spent an hour pulling 2 to 3 worms out per ear. Glad I did because with that many worms per ear I may not have gotten any sweet corn for myself in the end. You should pull your husks down 1 to 2 inches and make sure there aren't several hanging out having brunch. Just take them out and destroy them, then twist tie the tassels back, well, that's what I did, along with some duct taping to ensure closer.

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