Southwest Michigan vegetable update – June 13, 2018

We just can’t get a break from rain.


The weather continues to be the big issue with the area again receiving unneeded rainfall over the weekend. Rain across the area ranged from 0.75 to 2 inches or more for the week. Many fields still have standing water. High temperatures ranged from 69 to 82 degrees Fahrenheit and lows from 48 to 64 F. The 50 F growing degree-day (GDD) units are at 697 GDD for 2018 compared to 765 GDD for 2017 and 705 GDD for the five-year average.

The forecast of windy conditions for today, June 13, could lead to wind damage in yellow squash and zucchini plantings that have large leaves but no fruit yet to weigh the plants down.

Field activity

Most fields have been made ready and plastic has been laid waiting for transplants. Growers are making final preparations for harvest to begin, cleaning harvest containers and getting packing lines ready.

Crop reports

Asparagus harvest is over and most growers have applied their herbicides.

Pea harvest has begun.

Tunnel-grown, slicing cucumbers are at 4 inches and harvest will probably begin next week. Harvest from early, direct-seeded zucchini and yellow squash will began later this week or early next week.

Transplanting, staking and tying of tomatoes, peppers and eggplant continues. Transplants of these crops that were planted prior to the Memorial Day weekend heat are beginning to recover. Many are still somewhat yellow, but that will change when we finally come into several days of sunny weather.

Early planted potatoes are in bloom and all staged of Colorado potato beetle can now be found.

Thrips have been reported on onions.

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