Crop Progress and Condition for the Week Ending July 6, 2014.
There were 5.2 days suitable for fieldwork in Michigan during the week ending July 6, according to the Great Lakes Regional office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service. Last week’s severe thunderstorm winds caused some damage to crops, especially corn plants in the southwest region of the state. The most impacted fields were ones with the most advanced plant development.
Signs of fungal pathogens have been observed subsequent to recent rains, and measures are being taken to effectively manage the problem. Nitrogen and herbicide application are being wrapped up in spite of challenging wet conditions. Overall, most field crops are progressing well.
Apricots were at 1.5 inches in diameter with red blush intensifying on early varieties. Peaches were at 1.5 to 2 inches in diameter with hard pits. Pear fruit were at 1.25 inches in diameter; growers continued to tear out waterspouts as a way to remove protective habitats for pear psylla. Apple fruit ranged from 1.5 to 2 inches in diameter; June drop is continuing, and hand thinning is in full swing.
Sweet cherry harvest began on farms in the south; bird infestations on early ripening fruit and fruit cracking with the recent rains have caused concerns among growers. Tart cherries were also starting to color, and harvest began on some farms in the south; growers applied fungicide to ward off brown rot following wind whip damage to fruit from recent storms. Japanese plums were 1 to 1.25 inches in diameter and European plums were at 0.875 to 1 inches; cracking of fruit due to bacterial spot was observed in Japanese plums.
Grapes were at green fruit for Concord and Niagara varieties in the southeast, while in the northwest, Riesling and Chardonnay wine grape vines were in bloom to early fruit set. Strawberry harvest wrapped up in the south and west central regions; although harvest was abundant, wet weather caused problems related to fruit rots.
Harvest of black and early red raspberries began; fall-bearing varieties are 36-40 inches in length. Blueberry fruit were ripening and harvest of early season varieties began this week; fruit was reported to be of good quality.
Harvest of snap beans, lima beans, cabbage, broccoli, kale, and turnip crops was ongoing in the southeast region. The recent period of humidity has increased incidences of soft rot in zucchini, yellow squash, and cucumbers in the southeast. Pumpkin, watermelon, and muskmelon vines continue to expand and develop within the region as well.
Some pepper and tomato fields were starting to develop and bear fruit in the southeast. Pea harvest is complete in the southeast. Sweet corn was at full tassel in the Bay area. Carrots were 3-6 inches tall, but aster leafhopper infectivity was increasing in the Bay area. Red beets snap and shell peas, summer squash, zucchini, slicing cucumbers, and tomatoes were in various stages of harvest within the Bay area.
Winter squash, pumpkins, peppers, and eggplants were vining and growing lateral branches in the Bay area.