Sweet Corn

Corn Worm

Anonymous added on July 10, 2011 | Answered

Just to try, I planted 2 corn seeds and after they sprouted and got about a foot or so tall, I put them in a 20-inch pot on my screened in patio. It's about 5' tall now and has been attacked harshly by this worm-caterpillar that leaves a yucky, thick yellow something that kinda looks like oatmeal. I sprayed an organic spray and it didn't phase it. Sprayed w/Sevin pesticide and I thought it solved the problem, but as soon as a new ear w/silk emerged, it was again attacked. What could this worm be and how do I get rid of it? I live in Florida and want to plant 3 seeds this time and start over but not till I can control this nuisance.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on July 10, 2011

The corn earworm pest, also known as tomato worm, is the most common
garden enemy with regards to corn. Apply 5 drops of mineral oil or corn oil (apply only once) to corn ear tips when the silks begin to turn brown. If the eggs and larvae survive this barrier, use a knife to cut off affected ear tips before cooking. Most of the remaining ear will be clean and very edible. Here is more information: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/plant-problems/pests/insects/corn-earworm-control.htm

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