How to Manage Pests
UC Pest Management Guidelines
Seed rot causes the corn seed to rot before germination and damping off causes the seedling to die soon after emergence. Infected tissue may be water-soaked (Pythium), white to pink (Fusarium), or bluish (Penicillium). The stem of infected seedlings becomes brown and soft near the soil line. Aboveground symptoms include yellowing, wilting, and death of the leaves.
Seeds or seedlings may be predisposed to disease by several factors, including planting depth, soil temperature, soil type, seed quality, and mechanical injury to the seed pericarp. These diseases are more common in poorly drained, excessively compacted, or cold (less than 55°F), wet soils. Sweet corn, especially the supersweet hybrids, is much more susceptible than dent (field) corn.
Use high quality seed and good cultural practices, such as planting seed in warm soil (above 55°F), proper seedbed preparation, optimum water management, etc. Sweet corn, especially the supersweet hybrids, may benefit from fungicide seed dressings, especially in poorly drained and cold soils. Seed treatments for field corn are usually not warranted.
UC IPM Pest Management Guidelines: Corn