From Seeds to Table – Role of Machinery in the Harvesting of Corn

Growing corn is a 60-to-100-day process. Each corn stalk can produce one to two ears of corn. If the corn silk at the end of the ear is brown but the husks are still green, it may be time to harvest that corn. Farmers need to get up early to harvest the corn as it is best harvested early or late in the day when the weather tends to be cooler. To make the harvesting of the large fields easier, corn is no longer picked by hand but by machinery.

Machinery Required to Harvest Corn

A Seed drill is used to sow the seeds for crops. The seed drill can be set to a particular depth and position allowing for a consistent growing environment for each seed. Seed drills allows seeds to have the ideal distance for growth while providing protection from animals and birds since the seed drill also covers the seeds. Once the seeds are sowed it is time for the sunlight and rain to do their magic of turning those seeds into ears of corn to be harvested.


A combine harvester, or simply combine, can be used to harvest the corn. In essence, the combine can rip the kernels off the ears and return to the ground the unwanted materials. A combine harvester is mostly used when the corn is going to be used for feed.

The corn that is on your dinner table was probably harvested using a corn combine meaning a combine with a corn header.

Both combines have the following parts:


The standard header cuts through the stalk preferably at ground level. The header advances the cut stalk through the combine. However, the corn header has rollers that are designed to strip the ear of corn from the leaves and stalks.

Spinning Augers and Conveyors

The augers and conveyors aid in the movement of the stalk to center of the machine


In the middle of the machine is the thresher. It beats the cut plants to shake the grains off of the stalks. Grain Tank

Conveyors then move the separated pieces into the tank for holding (the grain tank) while other conveyors will move the left-over leaves and stalks to a different direction to be released out the rear of the machine.

As you can imagine all components have to work smoothly together. With all this equipment required to harvest corn and all the moving parts involved, you can imagine why farmers are concerned about keeping their equipment in tip-top shape. Agricultural repair shops can help if a part of the machine isn’t working properly. More importantly, they can provide maintenance to the machinery to ensure each growing season is a success.

So, the next time you are driving in the country surrounded by miles and miles of fields, you will be thankful for the agricultural repair shops that keep those machines running to allow corn to be harvested for you to enjoy at your dinner.