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Fruit & Vegetable Weekly Crop Update

Timely vegetable crop info for local producers.

weekly fruit and vegetable crop update 4-14-2014

Posted by Kyle Cecil -

1. 4 inch soil temp: Sunday April 13: 56.0 degrees

2. Growing Degree Days (GDD):2014 = 22.5 GDD   (Finally!)

3. Soil pH affects the availability of nutrients to plants. In acid soils (pH is low) calcium and magnesium become more available to plants, whereas the micronutrients iron, aluminum and manganese become soluble and can reach levels toxic to plants. In alkaline soils (pH is high), several soil micronutrients, including zinc, copper and cobalt, become less available to plants. Also at high pH, phosphorus precipitates (becomes insoluble) with the higher levels of calcium in the soil and therefore becomes less available to plants.

4. If you are new to drip irrigation-note that drip tape will constrict when the cold water enters the warm tape.  Therefore, be sure you have allowances for this when laying out the tape.  Some growers use an elastic band attached to the end of the tape that stretches as necessary.

5. The median date for the last 32 degrees freeze in our area (Western Illinois) is between 4-15 and 4-20.

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