Southeast Michigan vegetable regional report – August 6, 2014

Harvest is in full swing for most crops. The lack of significant precipitation continues, however heavy morning dews and long, humid hours continue to be observed and are very conducive to disease development.


In the last week, an average of 8.3 humid hours and 0.78 inches of rain were recorded for the Michigan State University Enviro-weather stations in the southeast region. The Petersburg Enviro-weather station recorded 0.6 inches of rain while the Commerce Township Enviro-weather station recorded 1.20 inches.

Air temperatures in the southeast have ranged from 47 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit with partly cloudy days. Based on the growing degree days (GDD) recorded for the last five years at the Petersburg Enviro-weather station, the 2014 growing season is behind by 296 GDD base 50, 279 GDD base 45 and 243 GDD base 42 when compared with the five-year average.

Regional GDD for the southeast region via MSU Enviro-weather









Commerce Township












Average for the region




Weather outlook

Temperatures are forecasted to range from 55 to 80 F over the next week, with chances of rain ranging from 41 to 54 percent for Aug. 9-11.

Vegetable crops

Harvest is in full swing for most vegetable crops, including vine crops such as melons and squash, and sweet corn, tomatoes, potatoes and peppers. The lack of significant precipitation continues in the area. Non-irrigated crops are affected by this lack of moisture, contributing to poor translocation of available nutrient in the soil.

Thrips and aphid populations remain low in cucurbits and solanaceous crops, and some mite activity has been observed in watermelons. Michigan State University Extension reminds growers to continue to protect vine crops from powdery mildew, especially pumpkins, as this pathogen can cause defoliation of vines resulting in potential fruit sunburn.

Heavy morning dews and long, humid hours continue to be observed in the area, increasing the risk of disease development on pepper and tomato fields with bacterial spot symptoms and other disease such as late blight of tomatoes and potatoes.

Processing tomato harvest will begin in the next couple of weeks. No major outbreaks of disease have been observed or reported in processing tomatoes this year.

As of Aug. 6, the risk of western bean cutworms is moderate in our region according to Five western bean cutworm moths were caught in the last seven days in the Monroe County trap. No corn earworm moths were caught in the last seven days in both of the Monroe County traps, but moderate risk of migration has been forecasted for the area according to No European corn borer moths have been caught at the Monroe County traps this week.

For more information on commercial vegetable production, contact Lina Rodriguez Salamanca at 517-264-5310 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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