Central Michigan vegetable regional report – May 27, 2015

Planting and field work is progressing with crops emerging.

Slug damage to asparagus spear.
Slug damage to asparagus spear.


Air temperatures were highly variable this week with highs ranging from 56 degrees Fahrenheit May 20 to 80 F May 26 in Entrican, Michigan. Low temperatures ranged from 34.5 F on May 23 to 61.6 F on May 26. Low soil temperatures range from the low 50s to low 60s.

Rainfall totals for the week were generally light with most areas receiving between 0.5 and 0.75 inches on May 25 and 26. Soil conditions remain variable with some soils too wet to work.


Chip potato planting continues with early plantings emerging. A few fields do have some light frost injury to foliage. Volunteer potatoes have been emerging. A few Colorado potato beetles have been observed this week.

Transplanting frost-sensitive crops into Market gardens continues as the threat of frost has diminished.

Sweet corn planting continues. Emergence rate is improving with warmer soils. First plantings are at V3. Some yellowness and even reddish leaves are still being seen in the early plantings, much of this is due to cool weather and slow growth and is not attributed to nutrient deficiency or pest issue.

Asparagus spears continue to emerge and growers continue to harvest. One grower did have a small amount of damage attributed to slug damage. These spears were from an area with poor weed control and a high amount of plant residue on the soil surface. Slug damage can occur on a variety of crops, especially when there is high residue or ground covers coupled with cool, wet weather. Managing crop residues and cultural control practices typically prevents slug damage and chemical control is often not needed.


We continue to catch only low numbers of true armyworm and black cutworm moths this week. Low catch numbers does not mean there is zero threat, however. Michigan State University Extension still recommends scouting for these pests as decisions on pesticide applications should be based on scouting reports and observations of larvae activity.

Remember that proper pest identification is an important part of pest scouting.

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