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Fruit & Vegetable Weekly Crop Update

Timely vegetable crop info for local producers.

Weekly fruit and vegetable crop update 8-26-2013

Posted by Kyle Cecil -

1.4 inch soil temp: 75.7 degrees F

2.Growing Degree Days(GDD) Since April 1 = 2308.0 GDD Average = 2381.0 GDD

3.Septoria leaf spot. I am seeing a great deal of Septoria in my travels. Although the fungus is not a soil inhabitant, it can persist from one season to the next on debris of diseased plants incorporated in the soil. Small, water-soaked circular spots 1 /16 to 1 /8 in. (1 .6 to 3.2 mm) in diameter first appear on the undersides of older leaves. The centers of the spots are gray or tan and spots have a dark brown margin. See picture taken last week of the disease under a microscope. In the field, remove or destroy tomato debris by deep plowing immediately after harvest. A 1-year rotation out of tomato should be sufficient if no other sources of inoculum are available. Most fungicides registered for use on tomatoes would effectively control Septoria leaf spot.

4.Whiteflies prevalent as well. Whiteflies damage eggplants by sucking enormous quantities of sap and covering plants with sticky honeydew. Black sooty mold grows over the honeydew, lowering the photosynthetic capacity of the plant and making the fruit unattractive. Cultural control as well as sprays of insecticidal soaps and certain oil sprays are acceptable for use on organically certified produce.

5.High tunnel growers. If you think it's hot outside....ask a high tunnel grower what hot is! What can we do to help moderate extreme temps in high tunnels. Many growers keep tunnels open 24/7 during these types of weather patterns. In addition, shade cloth can help moderate temps, but only to a point. Shade cloth is rated by the percent of light blocked, varying from 20-90%. Seasonal and crop species requirements dictate which percent shade cloth should be used. Most growers use 50%. Lastly, ridge vents and or end wall vents can also help move the heated air out of the tunnel.

Hope your season is going safe and is productive.


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