Gardeners grow corn because freshly picked corn tastes much better than store-bought corn. Freshly picked corn takes up time and space in the garden. It would help if you harvest corn as soon as its ears reached their peak. Otherwise, the kernels can turn stiff and starchy if you wait too long. Here is how to harvest information that can help you decide when to harvest your corn.
Facts about Corn Harvest
As surprising as it may seem, corn is grass! As soon as it germinates in the garden, a blade of grasslike material shoots out of the earth. The leaf will eventually grow more leaves and push upward, eventually forming nodes and developing corn ears. Weather can affect the time of year when you pick corn.
Under 100 days are needed to produce an ear of corn. In the garden, someone often says, ‘knee-high by July 4th’. Thus, the seeds will have been planted, germinate, and grow to about 12-18″ tall by early July.
No one says you have to follow that rule, but you should look at when the first frost occurs in your area and work backward from there. You want to make sure your corn is ready to harvest before a killing frost damages everything in the fall.
When is Corn Ready to Harvest – Detailed Guide
Planting corn in early spring or late spring will produce corn ready for harvest in mid to late summer. In general, it takes 70-100 days for corn to grow from seed. When the daily temperature reaches 65 degrees Fahrenheit with no chance of frost, you can go ahead and plant your corn.
The best way to gauge when to harvest corn is to observe its growth habits. Plants will produce several ears of corn at a time, the most mature ears growing at the top. Starting small, the corn cobs will gradually grow more vital as the weeks go.
Identify the long, semi-translucent white threads known as silks that sway around the ear. Pollen will travel to the silks of your corn if you have sown it close enough. You will see each kernel of corn attached to each of the silks plumping up and becoming the standard kernel of corn.
It would help if you did not harvest too soon. When the corn at the top of the plant isn’t ready, the rest isn’t prepared either. Ensure your corn gets full development for better flavor.
How to Harvest Corn?
Among the easiest tasks in gardening is harvesting corn! It is also one of the most rewarding tasks. If you’re ready to pick corn, grasp the ear of corn, bend it downwards, and pull it away from the stalk.
Hopefully, it will snap right off! Make sure you do not damage the stalk; there might be more ears in a week. After you’ve pulled a few ears out, you’ll soon figure it out!
It would be best if you left your ears in the field to dry for 4-6 weeks past the time when the green no longer appears on the husk during complex corn production, such as popcorn. Even though gardeners may find it difficult to wait, you will reap the rewards with a healthier, plumper seed.
You can remove the dark husk of hard corn once it has dried out to remove the hardened kernels with your thumb. In some cases, the corn can even be rubbed together to speed up the process.
How to Store Fresh Picked Corn?
Some people insist that starting the water to boil before picking corn is crucial since it loses its flavor so fast once it’s decided. Even though the timing isn’t quite so important, it tastes best right after harvest.
Within a week or two of picking the corn, the starches begin to convert the sugars into starches, and it will taste more like store-bought corn than newly picked corn. When storing freshly picked corn, it is best to store it in the refrigerator since it keeps for a week. When keeping it for longer, it can be frozen. Depending on the amount of room you have, you can either freeze it on the cob or cut it off the cob.