From the Editor’s Desk – Vegetable Crops Hotline

From the Editor’s Desk

Welcome to the Vegetable Crops Hotline (VCH), Purdue Extension’s exclusive newsletter for people in the business of growing vegetables.

In this issue, we highlight disease management. More specifically, the application of fungicides during dry weather, selection of fungicides to avoid resistance, and fusarium wilt management in watermelon. Included are lots of information about educational opportunities at the Southwest Purdue Agricultural Center (June 28), the Throckmorton/Meigs Purdue Agricultural Center (July 20), and the Purdue Student Farm (July 27). We have saved a place just for you. Register now to reserve your spot. Registration links are available in this issue and on the EVENTS tab of the Vegetable Crops Hotline Newsletter webpage.

Are you interested to learn more about Soil Health?

Purdue Extension is part of a North Central Region Soil Health Nexus team dedicated to increasing access to research-based soil health knowledge. Their website is packed with information. There is a white paper on the connection between Soil Health and Water Quality, and it includes a Soil Health Nexus Matrix Decision Tool and a Soil Health Toolbox. The latest post on their blog (April 19, 2023) shares a recording of a presentation about the ‘Top 10 Impacts of Cover Crops for Soil Health. If you want to know more about soil health at Purdue, contact Walt Sell ( and Bryan Overstreet (

Prairie Strip Vegetation

Now here is an idea for all growers to consider. I have always wanted to include prairie strips at the Purdue Student Farm and found these great resources I would like to share with you. The STRIPS project is based at Iowa State University. Since 2003, a team of farmers, researchers, and Extension educators have established native plantings in crop fields to retain soil and prevent runoff. But we do know that there are also positive effects for pollinators and insect predators. The STRIPS project mainly focused on including prairie strips in row crop production. Unfortunately, I could not locate resources about research that was done specifically for vegetable farms. In fact, this is good news. Like they say in the Robots animated movie, “See a need, fill a need”. Don’t hesitate to get in touch with me ( if you have ideas about including prairie strips on vegetable farms.

A SARE news release summarizes some of the findings in an article Prairie Strips as a Farmland Conservation Practice. This news release includes an interesting video of Wisconsin farmer Dan Stoffel who grows soybeans, alfalfa, and oats. In the video, he talks about his experiences with planting prairie strips and how it helped them control problematic water flow in some regions of the farm.

Below are more resources to consider.

Tallgrass Prairie Center

A step-by-step visual guide to prairie strips implementation

Prairie Strips: Small Changes, Big Impacts

Video – Prairie Strips – Bringing Back the Edges – Practical Farmers of Iowa

Website links

Frequently we include links to websites or publications that are available online. If you can’t access these resources or can’t see the web address, don’t hesitate to contact your local Extension office or us to request a hard copy of the information.

Remember that all previous articles published in the VCH newsletter are available on the VCH website

We would like to hear from you

ANR Educators and Growers, reach out to us if you are experiencing a vegetable production-related issue you think other growers need to know of. Remember, we have a great Horticulture Team that can assist you. A complete list is available HERE.

Send us pictures of success stories, activities, or issues in your county or on your farm. Please include a description and provide the name of the person that needs to get credit for the picture. These pictures could be used in future Vegetable Crops Hotline Newsletter articles. Submit your stories HERE.

Do not hesitate to contact me, Petrus Langenhoven, at if you have any questions or suggestions to improve the newsletter.

Enjoy reading this issue!

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