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I lived most of my life in CT and planted small plots (maybe 25 x 75) of sweet corn for the table. I was fortunate enough to have good ground, good weather, and sufficient rainfall for a good harvest.

Now in Tenn, this year is HOT with sparse rainfall (Athens, TN area) and I see corn in the fields with probably 75%-90% of the stalks brown. It doesn't look like sweet corn so I'm assuming its for livestock feed, other feed, or maybe flour or ethanol (??) I've seen some fields already harvested by chopping ears & stalks (I'm assuming for silage/fodder), but, so far, no one is just harvesting the ears...as I've seen here in the past.

My question is how long can corn stalks be brown before it can no longer be useful as feed, silage, anything!

Inquiring minds want to know! Bob
 

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For picking and shelling as long as it stands it will still be good in spring. If the ears themselves lay on the ground and are wet they will rot or grow.

For silage there should be some green in the stalks and the ears can dent but not dry.
 

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Good answer

For picking and shelling as long as it stands it will still be good in spring. If the ears themselves lay on the ground and are wet they will rot or grow.

For silage there should be some green in the stalks and the ears can dent but not dry.
Good answer.

Just one add on- for some reason two fields near our house had the tops pretty much all blow over in a storm. Since it was above the ear, no harm and might actually pick easier. On the flip side, corn that's all the way flat on the ground is a holy nuisance to combine. Sometimes you can only run one way in the field and if it's bad enough, I've seen people use grain headers instead of the corn header. That makes for a long, frustrating harvest.

Treefarmer
 

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in our area SW MO.....just about time to start chopping corn for silage.........corn pickers usually pick around here about whitetail deer season depending on field moisture condition...IE mid to late november
 
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