Flint, Michigan, area urban agriculture update – Aug. 15, 2018

Growers are thankful for the revitalizing rain received last week.

Yellow summer squash
All photos courtesy of Michigan Food & Farming Systems Women in Agriculture Farm

Weather

According to the Michigan State University Flint Enviro-weather station, temperatures for the past week ranged from a low of 57.5 degrees Fahrenheit to a high of 88.2 F, and the warm weather continues with high relative humidity. We are now at 2,195 growing degree-days (GDD) base 50; our season is still ahead when compared to the five-year averages.

The Flint, Michigan, area received 1.69 inches of rain over the past week, which reinvigorated vegetable crops in the field experiencing the lack of needed rainfall. We are still 4 inches behind when compared to seasonal rainfall averages; we should make up some of that deficit with the forecasted rainfall expected over the next few days.

Crop reports

According to research done in the MSU hoophouses located at the Student Organic Farm and educator observations from the field, tomatoes and cucumbers are abundant in area hoophouses.

Several insect pests remain active this week. Growers are reporting tomato hornworm and corn earworm in hoophouses and in the field. The much-needed rain also gave weeds quite a developmental boost.

Fall carrots are up and growing. Field peppers are starting to color and cabbages are near harvest on one area farm.

Going to area farmers markets and into CSA shares

Purple beansArea growers are harvesting tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, Swiss chard, beets, kale, green beans, cucumbers, celery, potatoes, summer squash, zucchini, basil, green onions, peppers and lots of sweet corn out of area hoophouses and farm fields.

MSU Extension’s Community Food Systems Work Team supports the development of local food systems in Michigan. The Michigan Fresh program has tips on growing, handling and preserving, as well as healthful recipes to take advantage of the delicious Michigan-grown bounty from your local farmer’s market. For more information, connect with your local community food systems educator by visiting the MSU Extension website or calling 1-888-678-3464.

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