Southwest Michigan vegetable regional report – May 20, 2015

Dry weather returns to southwest Michigan.

Temperatures have been variable for the week, but we are back to being dry. The area received only a trace to 0.2 inches of rain for the week. Temperatures for the morning of May 19 and 20 were in the mid-30s with 34 to 36 degrees Fahrenheit being common. No frost has been reported. Growers feel they are pretty much on schedule for planting and other activities. Transplanting did stop during the past few days until the threat of frost passed. It is scheduled to resume later this week.


Asparagus harvest is 50 to 60 percent complete, but has slowed due to cool temperatures. Michigan State University Extension reports that cutworms are present in some fields. Cutworms will climb asparagus stalks and feed on one side, causing the spears to bend. Since they feed at night, they are often not visible during the day. They can often be found in the soil at the base of an affected spear. Several products can be used to control them. Most products will also control asparagus beetles.

Tomato transplanting will resume now that the threat of frost has passed. Early planted fields are being staked.

Many fields are ready for pepper and eggplant transplants, but planting will begin next week.

Potatoes are at emergence. No reports of Colorado potato beetles at this time.

Sweet corn planting continues. Color has improved on earlier planted corn due to the warmer temperatures.

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