586 articles

On June 5, the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) mailed letters to produce growers having annual food sales over $500,000 informing them that inspections of produce farms would start in July.  Due to their sales volume, these growers are expected to be in compliance with the Food Safety Modernization Act Produce Safety Rule (21CFR § 112) as of the 2019 growing season.  The letters also outline the inspection process for 2019. As part of the inspection process, produce growers identified as having over $500,000 in food sales will be contacted sometime in June to schedule an inspection.  The inspections will begin in July.  Here are some things to keep in mind as ISDH rolls out their 2019 inspections: There will be no surprise inspections. Growers will be contacted prior to any inspector visiting the farm. The inspections will be conducted by ISDH. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will[Read More…]


thumbnail image

Indiana Horticultural Society Summer Meeting  Date: June 25, 2019. 9:30 am. Location: Huber Orchard and Winery, 19816 Huber Road, Starlight, IN 47106 The summer meeting is co-sponsored by Indiana Horticultural Society and Indiana Vegetable Growers’ Association. The meeting will focus on commercial production of fruits and vegetables and farm marketing. All those interested are welcome to attend. A registration fee of $5.00 per family or farm is payable at registration. A catered lunch will be served onsite. This will most likely be fried chicken with vegetables and drinks. There is a $10/person charge for lunch, collected onsite. Please go to the following website to RSVP  https://purdue.ca1.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_6oqUlioijOUNb0x 9:30 am    Convene and registration at Huber Orchard and Winery. 10:00 am  Introductions, a brief walking tour of facilities – winery, market, icecream store, banquet hall 10:30 am  Field tour – apples 11:45 pm Lunch – $10 – RSVP requested (see below) 1:00 pm   [Read More…]


thumbnail image

As we close the doors on May for the year, one of the biggest stories throughout the month was the precipitation. The entire state was above normal. Northwestern Indiana was 3.41” above normal and southeastern Indiana was 0.18” above normal for the month (Figure 1). Temperatures were near normal in the northern and above normal in the central and southern tiers of the state. Some stations in Central Indiana recorded rainfall on 24 out of 31 days. The good news is that many areas saw dry conditions set in the last week of May and beginning of June and helped alleviate some of the saturated soils. This actually provided a very limited window of opportunity for the agriculture industry. Unfortunately, the weather looks to turn off wet again with 1 to 4 inches of rainfall projected through June 10th. The wet pattern looks to continue through the first three weeks[Read More…]


Anthracnose of strawberry causes sunken lesions.

At the Southwest Purdue Ag Center, we are studying annual strawberry production on plastic mulch. Our hope is to gather information on the best methods and varieties to use for annual strawberry production in Indiana. As we learn about insect and disease problems, we will pass this information on to producers. This article is about the diseases we have observed in our strawberries which were planted in March 2019. Strawberry leaf spot-Lesions on leaves start out purple. As the lesions enlarge, the center becomes gray-brown (Figure 1). Under rainy conditions, lesions may coalesce across leaves and cause large necrotic areas. Lesions on stems and petioles may cause dieback. Yield or fruit quality loss can be caused by leaf spot under severe conditions. Although leaf spot symptoms are spread throughout our trial, this disease has not become serious for us. There are several cultural methods of managing leaf spot. Host resistance[Read More…]


Figure 3. Cucumber cultivar Taurus were grown in the front, cultivar Corinto was grown in the back.

Supported by NC SARE (LNC17-390), we are continuing research for improving high tunnel cucumber production. One of the biggest challenges for growing cucumbers in high tunnels in the summer is two-spotted spider mites. Dry and hot environments featured in high tunnels allow two-spotted spider mite populations to increase rapidly. The mites cause leaf yellowing, necrosis, and defoliation that interfere with plant photosynthesis. Yield can be significantly reduced. The pest also causes direct damage on cucumber fruit, resulting in a sandpaper-like texture to the rind (Figure 1). Early detection is the key for controlling two-spotted spider mites. As soon as two-spotted spider mites are detected, control efforts need to be taken. In the early stage, yellowish specks on the upper side of the leaves may be noticed (Figure 2). Turn the leaf over, on the other side of where the yellow specks are, you may find the presence of two-spotted spider[Read More…]


thumbnail image

So far for the month of May, temperatures across the state vary by nearly 2˚F above normal in the southeast and almost 3˚F below normal in the extreme northwest. Similarly, the same trends can be seen in the Modified Growing Degree Days as they are based on temperature (Figure 1).   The main story continues to be the precipitation for most of the state. Since January 1, precipitation is between 3 to 9 inches above normal in spots. Adding observed near normal to slightly above normal precipitation for the month in some areas is really delaying folks in the agriculture industry (Figure 2). Looking at the short term outlook from the Climate Prediction Center (Figures 3 & 4), much of the state has above normal chances for seeing above normal temperatures and precipitation over the 6 to 10 day and 8 to 14 day outlooks. Our active weather pattern doesn’t[Read More…]


Figure 1: A cantaloupe plant surrounded by striped cucumber beetles that have died after feeding on a plant treated with an imidacloprid product.

I know this may not come as a surprise to most of you, but it is rare that we get to observe the effectiveness of insecticides in such a dramatic way as we encountered when visiting a melon grower in southern IN recently. And in this case, the decision to apply an insecticide at transplant was a good one. In the photo below (Figure 1), one can see an accumulation of dead striped cucumber beetles that have fed upon a cantaloupe seedling that was treated with an imidacloprid soil drench (Trade names include: Admire Pro®, Macho®, Midashe Forte®, Montana®) at transplant 14 days prior to the photo being taken. The beetles are dead because they fed upon the cantaloupe plant and ingested the imidacloprid. Therefore, the plants were protected from defoliation by the beetles, but what about bacterial wilt? Did the act of feeding, however brief, cause bacterial wilt to[Read More…]


thumbnail image

Finally the time has come to plant warm season crops. Zucchini is a popular summer squash grown throughout Indiana and the United States. It always delivers a bounty of fruit. Yes, technically zucchini is a fruit (botanically classified as a modified berry) but as per the USDA it is listed under the ‘Vegetables and Vegetable Products” food group. Zucchini have a multitude of fruit colors and flavors. Therefore, this makes a great vegetable to present to consumers. Characteristics of zucchini – Typically, zucchini is non-vining and bushy but some varieties could have a creeping habit. Some varieties have prickly trichomes on both the stems and leaves. Male and female reproductive structures are produced on the same plant but in different flowers. The large yellow-orange unisexual flowers (a flower that possesses either stamens or carpels but not both) attracts bees, beetles and other insects to pollinate the flowers. The pollen is[Read More…]


Seed Corn Maggot in cucurbit stem. Photo credit John Obermeyer.

In addition to delaying much of our fieldwork, the cool set spring has wreaked havoc on some of the plants we have been able to squeeze in during brief dry periods. We have received reports of damage caused by seedcorn maggots (Figure 1) and wireworms (Figure 2). In preparation of this article I browsed the Vegetable Crops Hotline archives and came across eight articles published by Rick Foster. What do they have in common? Associations with weather and limited strategies for control. Capture LFR® remains the only product labeled and for wireworms only. Rick Foster did some work with this product and had some promising results. Seedcorn maggots typically lay their eggs in organic matter and feed on seed in the soil, however, they can also cause damage in cucurbit transplants. The adults are active in April and May laying eggs in the field. When soil temperatures reach 70°F the[Read More…]


thumbnail image

Southwest Purdue Agricultural Center Field Day Date: June 27, 2019. Registration begins at 8:30 am. Location: Southwest Purdue Agricultural Center, 4669 N. Purdue Road in Vincennes, IN 47591 Topics related to vegetable production include: Organic Tomato Production: Dan Egel will discuss the Tomato Organic Management and Improvement Project — including foliar disease management of tomatoes. High Tunnel Grafted Cucumber & Specialty Melon Production: Wenjing Guan and Petrus Langenhoven will discuss cucumber and melon production in high tunnels. Applying IPM Principles across Cropping Systems to Increase Insect Pollination and Profitability: Laura Ingwell will discuss best management practices for watermelon production by quantifying pest pressures, pollinator health, and crop yields. Annual Strawberry Production: Wenjing Guan will discuss annual plastic culture for strawberry production in southern Indiana. Other topics include: Termites to the Rescue: In this presentation, Rick Meilan will discuss the use of enzymes derived from termites to control invasive woody species. Removing[Read More…]


Vegetable Crops Hotline - Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture 625 Agriculture Mall Dr. West Lafayette, IN 47907

© 2019 Purdue University | An equal access/equal opportunity university | Copyright Complaints | Maintained by Vegetable Crops Hotline

If you have trouble accessing this page because of a disability, please contact Vegetable Crops Hotline at guan40@purdue.edu.