Sweet corn is ready for harvest when the silks are dried and turning brown, but before the outer leaves of the husk lose their green color and start to shed. The ears should feel firm and the kernels should have a milky or creamy appearance when squeezed.
Here's how to plant, grow, and harvest corn in your garden. Sweet corn is wind-pollinated, so it should be planted in blocks, rather than in single rows. Early, mid, and late-season varieties extend the harvest. If you miss the optimal harvest time, the corn's flavor will go downhill fast, as sugars convert to starch.
Most home gardeners are well aware of how to tell when sweet corn is ready to harvest. The clues (discussed in this article) are many.