Corn - When is it ready to be picked?

Old 07-30-04, 11:23 PM
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Corn - When is it ready to be picked?

I planted yellow corn from seed this spring.

There's some ears on the stalks now.

How do I know when they're ready to be picked without pulling the husks down & looking at the kernels?

Also, I had some space left where I planted the corn seeds & just for the heck of it I threw in a half dozen WalMart yellow popcorn kernels (unpopped of course). Those things grew like crazy & now stand 7 feet tall! Even though it was yellow popping corn, the "tassles" at the end of each of the ears that have grown out the side are "red". When are those ready to be picked? ...and, what can I do with them? Are they edible like regular corn? or are they meant to be dried somehow to turn them into popping corn?
Old 07-31-04, 06:46 PM
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Please read the link but don't despair.

Please read the following carefully. You have made some mistakes so far but don't give up. Most old timers will tell you Sweet corn is easy to grow. It is but you must understand how the plant produces it's seed.

We have grown perfect sweet corn only to have a field of feed corn turn it into starchy tough ears we could not eat. As you will read the Pop corn that you planted with the sweet corn will cross pollenate with unknown results.

Next year buy a Corn named Kandy Corn it is an EH Hybrid that turns to suger not starch & that will give you a large fudge factor. If you pick it a little late it will be sweeter not starchey & this will allow you to learn when to pick with out the learning curve.

If after you read the article you want to talk corn just reply. Growing your own Corn is a great treat & with the EH Hybrids we are getting better corn & enjoying it longer. We plant a new block every 2 weeks four times a season & that gives us corn all late Summer & frozen for Winter enjoyment.

PS: If you cut the tops out of the Pop Corn now it may still be ok.

How long have the Sweet corn had their ear silk, & how long is it?

Last edited by marturo; 08-01-04 at 10:21 AM.
Old 08-01-04, 12:35 PM
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Picking Corn

Feel the ears, when you can feel the kernals thru the husk it ready to pick. You may want to plant a SH2 hybred ( Illni extra sweet, honey select, and others ) which get sweeter after they are picked.
Old 08-01-04, 05:29 PM
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When to pick corn--------

How about this one!
21 days after the corn tassles, but by then the raccoons can smell it so put out the cheap portable radio every night (on R&R, so it has to be an oldies station, cuz R&R is dead) starting at day 14 after the tassle.
Remember, this IS an exact science!!

Old 08-01-04, 07:43 PM
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The news gets better as we go ahead

Hi seasideheights

Looking for the SH 2 that gwarr mentioned. I found the latest in Sweet Corn Hybrids. Great news for all Corn growers a Sweet Corn that we can mix together & enjoy 4 or more types of Corn grown in the same garden.

Imagine my surprise when I jumped from the EH Hybrid to SH2 & now into a non cross pollenating Sweet Corn.

We embarked on a mission many years ago to turn starch back into sugar at picking time & that was easy enough. However a Sweet Corn that ignores pollen from other Corn Just think about it. 3 or 4 varities at the same time all in the same Garden.

Now that's real progress & one you can read about in the Earlmay Link,
Old 08-03-04, 04:40 AM
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pick when tassles turn dark

Wow, these questions takes me back a few years - ok, 40.

The corn is ready when the tassles (silk) is turning dark. You have about a 2 week window before the corn gets too starchy.

Let the popcorn go until the stalks have died (like halloween stalks). The popcorn may still have too much moisture at this point. Its a fine line between too much and too little moisture in the kernels to get a good explosion. Old timers can tell by feel. Have fun getting the kernels off the ear. Its not easy (nor fun) doing it by hand.

Popcorn, like field (livestock) corn, doesn't have the sugar content of sweet corn. It is also tougher. Field corn can be eaten like sweet corn, but soak it in water overnight. Don't even try it with popcorn.

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