Southwest Michigan vegetable regional report – June 5, 2013

Cool temperatures continue to delay plant growth in the southwest region.

Weather

According to Michigan State University Extension, temperatures for the week at the Southwest Michigan Research and Extension Center (SWMREC) averaged near normal with highs from 62 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit (average is 74) and lows from 39 to 70 F (average is 53). In general, plants are not growing as they should due to cool temperatures. At SWMREC as of June 4, 2013, there have been 535 base 50 growing degree days (GDD). The area received 0.5 to 1 inch of rainfall during the period.

Field activities

Weather has been good for continuing field activity and planting continues for most crops with no interruptions. Cool temperatures have been good for transplant establishment, but not for plant growth.

Crop reports

Asparagus harvest continues on mature fields and will probably continue through next week. Harvest from newer fields has stopped and herbicides are being applied.

Pepper, tomato and eggplant transplanting continues. Early planted tomato and pepper fields are being staked. Growth on these crops has been slow due to cool conditions. Lateral buds are beginning to grow on peppers.

Low tunnel material on yellow squash, zucchini and cucumber transplants has been removed since plants are in flower. Harvest from low-tunnel fields will begin next week. Direct seeding continues.

Watermelon and cantaloupe transplanting continues.

Early planted sweet corn is 14 to 16 inches tall and still yellow due to cool conditions. Color should improve as temperatures increase.

Pea harvest will probably begin next week.

Early planted potatoes are 12 inches tall. No Colorado potato beetles have been observed.

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