The Q&A Archives: Sweet Corn Ready?

Question: How can you tell when sweet corn is ready to pick?

Answer: There are several indicators of corn ripeness. The silks will dry as corn nears picking time. The kernals near the end of the ears will fill out. When you press a kernal with a fingernail, a milky juice will escape. Allow the corn to go too long and the kernals will be dry and tough.

It helps to grow a variety for a year or two to become familiar with it. There are several types (not to mention varieties) of corn available these days, including regular sweet corn and various types of supersweets. The supersweets tend to have a less milky appearance when ripe, and are a bit more forgiving of not being harvested exactly on time!

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