The Michigan Field Office of USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service reports for the week ending June 30 that the majority of the regions across the state experienced warmer temperatures and less precipitation compared to previous weeks. These weather conditions helped more fields dry out, which in turn allowed for more planting and other field activities to occur.
Most farmers finished planting corn, however, reporters noted that some fields for forage or silage could still be seeded in the upcoming weeks. Spotters noticed that some fields were showing signs of stunted growth due to the high amounts of precipitation during the planting season.
Squash and zucchini harvest began in the south-western region as early planted sweet corn was beginning to tassel. Early planted potatoes in the area were flowering with reports of increased insect pressure in some fields. In the Central region, potato and sweet corn planting is complete. Some side-dressing of early planted potato fields took place. Asparagus harvest was coming to a close in the West Central region.
Cabbage, kale and broccoli harvest was underway in the Southeast. No potato late blight has been reported yet this season in Michigan. Despite the sustained wet weather, late blight risk remains moderate in most areas.
A warmer, drier week helped to push fruit development. Some fruit growers continued to plant new fruit trees and small fruit. Planting was severely delayed due to the cold, wet spring. This was the latest planting that had occurred in memory.
Tree fruit growers began to deal with the large ruts left in orchards from spraying operations in the spring. Growing degree day accumulations lagged and most fruit was about a week behind normal. Apples continued to size very well across the state. In the East, most apples were 1.25 to 1.5 inches. Growers had a good fruit set and were pleased with the crop. Growers hand thinned where necessary.
Blueberries in the Southwest looked good. Bleutta, one of the earliest varieties, began to color. Cherry fruitworm and cranberry fruitworm were both active. Persistent spring rains caused soggy fields which made weed control and insecticide applications difficult. Spotted wing Drosophila monitoring continued. The pest was observed in low numbers last week.