Southwest Michigan vegetables regional report – Aug. 14, 2013

Powdery mildew symptoms increase in many vine crops.

Weather

According to Michigan State University Extension via Enviro-weather, temperatures for the week at the Southwest Michigan Research and Extension Center again averaged below normal with highs from 67 to 83 degrees Fahrenheit (average is 80) and lows from 54 to 64 F (average is 57). As of Aug. 12, 2013, we are at 1,884 base 50 GDD with an average of 1,934 GDD. The area received 0.5 to over 2 inches of rain during the period. Cool temperatures have allowed growers to stay current on harvest activities and reduce irrigation inputs.

Crop reports

Harvest has begun on watermelons and fall squash. Powdery mildew can be found in pumpkin, squash and cucumber fields if growers have not controlled it well. Virus symptoms continue to appear on many vine crops. Squash bugs and cucumber beetles can also be found in many vine crop plantings.

Anthracnose (Photo 1), Fusarium and Phytophthora symptoms can be found in many watermelon fields. Conditions are bad enough that many growers feel it will affect total yield. Many pumpkin fields are showing individual plant decline that can often be traced to squash vine borer larva activity.

Anthracnose on watermelon
Watermelon fruit showing anthracnose symptoms.
Photo credit: Ron Goldy, MSU Extension

Mites can be found on tomatoes.

Harvest on all crops continues with no significant problems to report at this time.

Growers are beginning to remove plastic mulch.

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