Vegetable growers’ news for Southeast Michigan
The cold and wet conditions are about average for this date (April 20).
While no one wanted to see snow in the fields on Monday (April 18) or rain the previous Saturday, this region got both. In spite of this weather, there have been a few suitable days earlier in the month for working well-drained ground and planting cool season crops. Our growing degree day accumulations are historically about average although by this time last year, they were nearly triple the current accumulation. Visit MSU’s Enviro-weather site to follow growing degree day accumulations at the station closest to you.
Over-wintered parsnips are in good condition and are being dug and shipped.
The region’s famous hothouse rhubarb is being shipped and may be found in some local chains.
Early lettuce has been seeded and transplanted in the field and in hoophouses.
Peas have been seeded once or even twice and some very early potatoes are in the ground under plastic mulch.
A small quantity of miscellaneous crops such as beets, parsley and other cool season crops have also been seeded.
In the greenhouse, germination chambers are full of warm season crop seedings and some cole crops transplants are outdoors on wagons.
Over-wintered spinachsurvived well under the snow cover.
Heated hoophouses are housing tomatoes nearly a foot tall but growers are paying the price in heating costs.