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The sweet corn - from the end of June it has really skyrocketed. Then he flowered and now he's wearing his thick cobs. But are they ready for harvest now?

Black threads on the candy corn are an indication that it is ripe

Harvest time: Depending on the variety, between the end of July and October

Are you growing the candy corn to eat or do you want to get seeds? Depending on this, the sweetcorn has to mature for different periods of time. To obtain seeds, the corn cobs must dry out on the plant. The outer leaves are then brown. This is mostly between August and October.

Many varieties can be harvested for consumption as early as the end of July. Late-ripening varieties develop their correct degree of ripeness between September and October. Basically it can be said that it takes 90 to 100 days from sowing to harvest. The cobs are mature three weeks after flowering.

This is how you can tell when the cobs are ripe!

You can recognize ripe sweetcorn cobs by the following characteristics:

  • Filaments (former styles of female flowers) are brown to black
  • Threads have dried up
  • Milk maturity: A milky-white juice emerges from the corn kernels

What is milk ripeness?

You can test the ripeness of the milk by scratching a corn kernel with a fingernail or a knife. If a milky-white juice escapes, the harvest time has come for consumption. If, on the other hand, a clear and watery juice escapes, the cobs are still unripe. Once the cobs have hardened, it's too late to eat - the perfect time to harvest seeds.

How is it harvested?

The cobs are simply broken off the plant or cut off with a knife. You don't have to be careful with this. The sweetcorn is annual and is composted after harvest. After harvesting, the cobs are hung up to dry for seed production.

Use the candy corn

  • consume or preserve soon after harvest
  • good for freezing
  • after harvesting, the contained sugar is converted into starch (sweetness disappears)
  • do not wait longer than 8 hours from harvest to consumption
  • e.g. B. Peel the cobs and cook or grill for 20 minutes


In most cases, 2 to 3 harvest passes are necessary, since not all cobs ripen at the same time.

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