Southwest Michigan vegetables regional report – Aug. 7, 2013

Cool temperatures have been good and bad for vegetable producers.

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 72 to 81 degrees Fahrenheit (average is 81) and lows from 49 to 62 F (average is 57). The area received between 0.5 and 1 inch of rain during the period. Cool temperatures have been good and bad. Good since they allow growers with limited labor to stay current on harvest activities and have helped return soil moisture to good levels. However, it is bad for growers of crops such as eggplant and watermelon that truly like hot weather.

Crop reports

Recent weather continues to be good for spread of powdery and downy mildew on vine crops. Virus symptoms continue to appear on many vine crops, especially pumpkins and cucumbers.

Late blight has been found on tomatoes.

Pepper growers are experiencing some blossom end rot problems due to the high temperatures from July 14-19.

Harvest continues on all crops except for watermelon and that will start early next week.

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