Ask a Question forum: When do I harvest Sweet corn/Popcorn hybrid?

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Name: Keith
West Babylon, NY (Zone 7a)
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Sep 11, 2015 2:50 PM CST
Last year I brought seed that was from popcorn pollinated with sweet corn pollen, creating a hybrid. Sweet corn is harvested when tassels turn brown and die, popcorn is harvested when husk is brown and dry, so when should I harvest the hybrid? I wanted to taste it but I'm not sure if I eat it fresh or dry it and pop it?
Name: Elaine
South Sarasota, Florida (Zone 9b)
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Sep 12, 2015 1:57 PM CST
Keith, I would try it as fresh corn, and if it's not all that great, let it mature for popcorn. I'm thinking with a cross like that of two types of corn that are for different uses, you run the risk of getting corn that's not all that great for either purpose. Or maybe it will be fantastic for both purposes? You just don't know, but hybrid sweet corn has been bred to have lots of sugar and be delicious and tender, and popcorn is probably not bred for those qualities.

The real beauty of growing corn, (just my opinion) is being able to harvest it and eat it right away. Popcorn probably doesn't make all that much difference if you grow your own or buy it (except buying it is a lot less work). So I'd be inclined to eat it fresh if it's good, and maybe just let a cob or two mature for popcorn at the end.

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