West central Michigan vegetable regional report – April 29, 2015

Dry weather facilitated planting, but overall the growing season is still just starting.

Asparagus spears had just started to emerge early this week.

Asparagus spears had just started to emerge early this week.

Crops

Asparagus crown digging finished last week with new fields planted early this week. Herbicide application was ongoing or finished early this week. Harvest has not begun in Oceana or Mason counties as of early this week. Michigan State University Extension urges growers to be sure they are aware of alternatives to chlorothalonil for purple spot control. Labelled alternatives include Manzate Pro-Stick (active ingredient mancozeb) and Quadris SC (active ingredient azoxystrobin). Trials suggest Quadris also can provide some protection against asparagus rust.

Carrot planting on mineral soils progressed well this week. Note that Nimitz nematicide is available via an emergency exemption for pre-plant application as an alternative to Vydate (download the Vydate label). Growers should be aware of alternatives to chlorothalonil for leaf blights. Read about results of recent MSU carrot trials.

Celery transplanting was ongoing this week in west Michigan.

Onion sowing and transplanting has been ongoing in Newaygo and Ottawa counties. Sowing is finished or near finished in Ottawa County as of yesterday, April 28, with some onions in the loop stage. Don’t forget Goaltender is legal to use on the 1-leaf stage of onions. Note that if you are looking for alternatives to Prowl H20 (active ingredient pendimethalin), there are water-based generics available. It is also possible to use the old formulation of Prowl 3.3 EC, but remember the solvent in this product is hard on emerged onions, so it needs to be applied before seedling emergence.

Onions emerging through soil
Early sown onions were in the loop stage yesterday, April 28, at one location.

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