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Fruit & Vegetable Weekly Crop Update

Timely vegetable crop info for local producers.

weekly update 8-24-2012

Posted by Kyle Cecil -

  1. 4 inch soil temp: 72.7 degrees F
  2. Growing Degree Days Since April 1: 2898.5 GDD Average** = 2337.0 GDD
  3. Hot weather earlier has decreased pepper yield and quality. High temperatures cause peppers to drop their flowers without setting fruit. It also leads to an increase in the incidence of blossom end rot. At times, blossom end rot is mistaken for sun-scald. These are two distinct issues with different management approaches to remedy and prevent.
4. Mites continue to be found in multiple crops such as muskmelons, tomatoes and eggplants. Rain and humidity will enhance natural enemies of mites, if and when we receive such. Dr. Rick Weinzierl, U of I, addressed some management strategies regarding such in the last Illinois Fruit and Vegetable News...see:
http://ipm.illinois.edu/ifvn/contents.php?id=10

5.High tunnel growers: Those growers using their tunnels for year-round production are well into their planting season for Fall/Winter crops. High tunnels have progressed from a tool to extend the season to a growing strategy to grow local vegetables all year round. If you are new to fall and winter production in high tunnels seasoned advice urges you to pay particular attention to the details and characteristics of the seed varieties you will want to plant. Warm season and cool season varieties are very different. The seed companies are doing a very good job at suggesting varieties particularly suited for growing during fall and winter. See http://web.extension.illinois.edu/hkmw/localfoods.html for our recent webinar on the topic.


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