148 articles tagged "Vegetable Crops - General".

Figure 1. A pheromone trap in the field.

One way insects communicate with individuals of the same species is with pheromones. Pheromones are volatile chemicals released by an insect that usually can be detected only by individuals of the same species. There are a number of different types of pheromones, but the most common type is the sex pheromone. Usually the females will emit a tiny amount of a chemical that attracts the male to her and increases the likelihood of mating. Because the chemical is volatile, air currents carry it. The male detects the pheromone in the air with receptors on his antennae. He then flies upwind to find the source of the pheromone, a prospective mate. The chemical compositions of pheromones for a number of pest species have been identified and synthetic copies can be produced in the laboratory. Synthetic pheromones can be used in conjunction with traps to catch male insects. Listed below are some,[Read More…]


Figure 3. With damping off, multiple factors usually occur to cause seedling death, both before and after germination. These factors include improper watering, poor water quality, poor seed health (e.g., old seeds, improperly stored seed), or cool temperatures all impact seedling germination, emergence, and growth.

This is the time of year when growers begin planting seed—whether you are child planting a few seeds in Dixie cup for a school project, home tomato growers, or professional horticulturists. Unfortunately, one problem you may share in common is damping-off. Damping-off describes the death of seeds or seedlings and includes all of the following phenomena: Seeds that rot before they germinate, the newly emerging root (radicle) or shoot (cotyledons) of the seedling rots before emergence, or stems of seedlings (cotyledon) are attacked near the soil line, causing the young plants to collapse. Damping-off is caused by several fungi, including Botrytis spp and Rhizoctonia solani, and fungal-like organisms such as Pythium spp. and Phytophthora spp. These microbes are found in practically all soils and pose a large threat to plant propagation. Almost all species of plants can be infected, and these organisms also cause new cuttings to rot, as well.[Read More…]


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This article is my response to a grower’s question about lowering soil pH in a high tunnel. The soil test indicated pH of the soil in his high tunnel was 7.7. The high pH could be partially caused by alkaline water he used to use for irrigation. The grower has changed the water source, but high soil pH is still a concern. ‘I have soil sample from the high tunnels if I could have your input on them I would appreciate it. I am concerned with the pH, should I use sulfur to bring it down, if so, how much?’ Following is my response to the grower’s question. My response is mainly based on the publication ‘Lowering Soil pH for Horticulture Crops‘. Purdue Extension HO-241-W. We have a few choices to reduce soil pH. Adding elemental sulfur is one way to do it. If you want to reduce soil pH[Read More…]


On January 1, products containing >6.5% dicamba and an agriculture use label are now restricted use pesticides. In order to purchase these herbicides, buyers must carry a private or commercial pesticide applicator license. While dicamba herbicides have been on the market for over 50 years to control broadleaf weeds, the recent development of dicamba resistant soybeans has given soybean producers a new post-emergent option for the management of herbicide resistant weeds. The new soybeans are XtendiMax® soybeans and FeXapan®, XtendiMax®, or Engenia® herbicides, all dicamba-based products can be sprayed on them. Those producers who plan to apply any of the three soybean dicamba products MUST attend a training before any of these products are applied. This is a requirement mandated by the EPA approved label. These trainings cover basic drift reduction techniques, as well as label requirements. One requirement is before application of a soybean dicamba product; producers must visit[Read More…]


If you have not joined this free marketing and network program for growers, buyers and food producers in Indiana, take a moment to join today! Visit www.indianagrown.org to submit your Member application. Indiana Grown has received recognition and funding from the State Legislature to strengthen our local and regional food networks. Once you join, you have access to the excellent team at the Indiana State Department of Agriculture to help you make market connections and sales. Heather Tallman, the membership developer is an incredible asset to the program and serves as a major connector for growers and buyers. She talks regularly with buyers and can connect them with members who have known crops available. Indiana Grown also offers their members events and a newsletter to help you make market connections year-round. Once you develop your online profile, you can update your information on the ‘News’ blog of the website. That[Read More…]


Welcome to a new year of the Vegetable Crops Hotline (VCH), Purdue Extension’s newsletter for people in the business of growing vegetables. As usual, we will have fifteen issues throughout the 2018 growing season. The first issue of the year is sent to all who subscribed to VCH via US-mail in 2017 as well as new subscribers for 2018. To continue receiving future copies through US-mail, renew your Hotline subscription using the forms attached  to this issue. Note that we provide an up-to three years’ subscription of VCH with a reduced price. If you receive the issue through email, you will continue to receive the newsletters on the issue dates. In addition, you will receive emails if there are articles or announcements that need your immediate attention. These articles will be posted under Hot Topics and be included in the next issue. All the previous articles published in VCH are available on the website, and you will find additional articles under Veggie Extras. Frequently[Read More…]


This is the final issue of the Vegetable Crops Hotline (VCH) for 2017. Now is the time for subscribers who receive a paper copy in the mail to renew. A renewal form is included with this issue. Note that we provide an up-to three years’ subscription of VCH with a reduced price. You can also sign-up for Veggie Texts with the same form. Email subscribers will remain on the subscription list for VCH as long as the email address works. Email subscribers will need to send us an email or call us to sign-up for Veggie Texts. An Indiana Vegetable Grower Association (IVGA) membership form is included here too. IVGA membership no longer automatically includes the VCH subscription. You need to indicate you would like to subscribe the VCH on the membership form. Thank you very much for your support of VCH. If you have any suggestions, ideas, comments, please do not hesitate to[Read More…]


Farmers markets are a centerpiece of local food systems. These markets connect farmers with consumers and provide important economic benefits. While Indiana farmers can take advantage of the opportunities from selling directly to consumers, they face a dearth of information regarding pricing and marketing strategies. Information about pricing and product quality requirements are generally available for farmers who produce enough volume to enter wholesale markets. Larger farmers selling wholesale can access these weekly reports to define their marketing strategies, assess investment in new technologies, and assure profitability. On the other hand, Indiana’s small farmers have faced a lack of pricing and sales information regarding Indiana’s 155 farmer’s markets. Thus, Indiana farmers have had to rely on farmers market prices from neighboring states or walk down the market aisles to define prices, assess potential profitability, and determine market feasibility. The Horticulture Business Extension Program at Purdue University team started collecting fruit[Read More…]


Winter is the best time to recharge. In the last issue of this years’ Vegetable Crops Hotline newsletter, I would like to highlight a few free webinar resources that I found very useful in the past season. Hopefully, you can also benefit from them, and have a productive winter. eOrganic webinars http://articles.extension.org/pages/25242/webinars-by-eorganic A lot of great information related to organic production, including using biofungicides, biostimulants and biofertilizers to boost crop productivity and help manage vegetable diseases; Management options for striped cucumber beetle in organic cucurbits; Impacts of the food safety modernization act on diversified organic vegetable farms, and a lot more. Commercial Horticulture Webinars by Alabama Cooperative Extension http://www.aces.edu/anr/beginningfarms/webinararchive.php The webinar series cover topics including irrigation, greenhouse crop production, plant disease management, insect pest management, weed management and more. Vegetable webinars by Michigan State University Extension http://msue.anr.msu.edu/program/beginning_farmer_webinar_series/vegetable_webinars The webinar series target for beginning farmers, topics include cover crops, season extension, plasticulture,[Read More…]


In the last two months, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has released several communications dealing with the Produce Safety Rule (PRS). The following is a brief summary of those communications: Guidance On September 5, FDA released Guidance for Industry: Standards for the Growing, Harvesting, Packing, and Holding of Produce for Human Consumption: What You Need to Know About the FDA Regulation – Small Entity Compliance Guide. This is a compliance guide, prepared by FDA, to assist small entities in complying with the PSR. Copies of the document may be downloaded at https://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceRegulation/GuidanceDocumentsRegulatoryInformation/ucm574281.htm?source=govdelivery&utm_medium=email&utm_source=govdelivery. Testing of Agricultural Water On September 11, FDA announced that it had determined that the following water testing methods are “scientifically valid” and “at least equivalent” to the method of analysis (EPA Method 1603) in §112.151(a) in accuracy, precision, and sensitivity: Method 1103.1 – Escherichia coli ( coli) in Water by Membrane Filtration Using membrane-Thermotolerant Escherichia[Read More…]


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