Southwest Michigan vegetable update – May 3, 2017

Cool, wet weather slows plants and field activity.


The area received 2 inches of rain over the past week keeping growers out of many fields. That is probably a good thing given the threat of cold for the weekend. We lost our cloud cover this morning, May 3, and some areas experienced freezing temperatures. The lowest I have seen is 30 degrees Fahrenheit, but other areas might have been slightly colder. No damage has been reported to Michigan State University Extension. Cloudy conditions have also limited the effect of low tunnels.

Field activity

Well-drained fields continue being prepped for planting when weather allows. In general, activity has slowed due to rain and wet soils.

Crop reports

Little change has occurred since last week due to the cool, cloudy conditions.

Sweet corn and potato planting continues, but I have not seen any emergence.

Asparagus continues to be harvested at a slow pace with two or more days between harvests. Growers are on their eighth or so harvest.

Peas are 4 inches tall.

Some producers are direct seeding summer squash and zucchini into plastic mulched, low tunneled beds. Some transplants have also gone out into low tunnels.

Greenhouse tomatoes had some botrytis issues. This is not surprising given the cloudy conditions. Producers need to improve air circulation if possible through fans or venting when temperatures allow.

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