WORMS IN EARS
Several different pests feed on silk and kernels or tunnel into ears and stems.
Chemical control: use Sevin dust repeatedly as silks develop.
Organic control: use Bt, rotenone or pyrethrum; or when silks begin to brown, place several drops of mineral oil on silks.
EARS NOT FILLED WELL WITH KERNELS
Plant in small blocks to assure pollination. Plant more that you think you will need.
BIRDS EATING CORN SEED; RACCOONS OR PHEASANTS RAIDING RIPENING EARS
To prevent seed eating, try mixing crow repellent (tar-like substance) with seed before sowing. For raiders of ears, try scare devices, fencing and plant extra so you won’t mind losing some.
UGLY GRAY GROWTHS ON EARS, STEM OR LEAF
Called Smut. It’s a fungus which has no control. Cut out and burn affected plants. Don’t compost. In Mexico, corn smut is eaten as a delicacy.