Safeguard Corn With Mineral Oil
Are corn earworms and black beetles targeting your ripening ears of corn? Protect the ears by squirting mineral oil at the base of the silk, using a medicine dropper. Repeat the process every few days as the plant grows. The right timing is essential: Apply the oil only after the silks have begun to dry and turn brown; if you start earlier, less pollination will occur and the kernels won’t develop properly. What about those pesky birds looking for a fresh meal? Keep them from pecking ripening corn by enclosing the ears in paper bags and tying the bags closed with twine.