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Corn Earworm

Corn Earworm


Range in color from light green or pink to nearly black. Earworms like all types of corn, especially sweet corn, devouring tender new leaves and chewing through developing corn tassels and kernels. First generation larvae typically chew on newly emerged corn leaves. The second generation adults lay eggs on silk of corn. Larvae emerge and feed on the developing cob. In some areas, there may be three generations.


Spinosad- and Bt-containing products can be utilized. Spray spinosad on new corn to control the first generation. Spinosad or Bt products will work if sprayed where it will be eaten by corn earworms. We recommend Bull's-Eye Bioinsecticide and Green Step™ Caterpillar Control. Weather Shield™ Spreader Sticker will increase the effectiveness of botanical controls by helping them stick to the corn plant. Since eggs are laid on newly emerged silk, repeat sprays every 3-7 days during silking. Trichogramma lay eggs in the pest moth eggs and prevent hatching. Grub-Away Nematodes can easily be applied; within the protective husks the nematodes seek out worms and kill them.

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