Latest News

Penn State Extension news for vegetable and small fruit producers.
SWD oviposition damage on blackberry fruit. Photo: Kathleen Demchak, Penn State Extension
July 13, 2015

The fact that spotted wing drosophila is being found in Maryland means that SWD is also likely to be present in warmer areas of Pennsylvania, and in the remainder of Pennsylvania shortly.

Anthracnose is diagnosed by the sunken black lesions on the fruit, with little black dots
July 12, 2015

Anthracnose (also called ripe rot) in blueberry, has been quite severe this year, especially in highly susceptible varieties such as Bluecrop, Bluetta, and Blueray.

Irregularly shaped greasy gray-brown late blight lesions as well as some small circular tan lesions from Septoria leaf spot on tomato (Photo credit: Beth Gugino).
July 8, 2015

On Monday, late blight was confirmed in two tomato fields in Morris County in Northern NJ. These are the first reports on tomato in the mid-Atlantic and Northeast regions.

Highlighted counties are where CDM outbreaks have been reported as of 8 July 2015. Red indicated the reports were made within the past 7 days. Green is more than 7 days ago. Map source: Cucurbit Downy Mildew ipmPIPE website.
July 8, 2015

Yesterday downy mildew was confirmed on cucumber in Berks County. This is the first confirmed report in PA however there are likely more infected fields around so scout yours now if you haven’t already.

Characteristic tomato early blight lesion with concentric rings (Photo credit: Beth Gugino)
July 1, 2015

Both early blight and Septoria leaf spot are now a common sight in PA tomato fields thanks in part to the frequent rain events and persistent high relative humidity.

Downy mildew sporulation on the underside of a cucumber leaf (Photo: Beth Gugino).
July 1, 2015

Although not confirmed yet in PA, the presence of nearby sources and the current weather patterns place many portions of PA at risk for cucurbit downy mildew infection.

Insects on this sticky card are primarily fungus gnats.
June 26, 2015

A research project started this year is investigating different ways to increase the effectiveness of biocontrols in high tunnels.

European corn borer feeding. Photo: Eric Burkness,
June 25, 2015

Corn earworm counts exceed thresholds in Bradford, Luzerne, and Washington counties.

Scouting frequently and regularly could save your crop.
June 25, 2015

Plant, weed, hoe, cultivate, water, plant, fertilize, water . . . No time to stop and take a close look for pests and diseases? Take a few minutes. It could save your crop.

Purplish-gray sporulation on the underside of a cucumber leaf infected iwth downy mildew (Photo credit: Beth Gugino).
June 24, 2015

Downy mildew was confirmed on cucumber in both southeastern Michigan and in Kent Co. in the southwestern corner of the province across Lake Erie north of Ohio on 23 June.

Corky lesions on tomato fruit characteristic of bacterial spot (Photo credit: Beth Gugino).
June 24, 2015

Bacterial spot on both tomatoes and peppers is being reported across many regions of Pennsylvania. Fortunately, growers now have another tool in the toolbox for the in-season management of bacterial spot on tomato. There is now a 2(ee) label for the use of Quintec (quinoxyfen) for suppressing bacterial spot.

Drift herbicide damage on tomato.
June 24, 2015

So far this year, several vegetable and small fruit growers have reported herbicide injury to their crops. Use the proper herbicide formulations to prevent damage to non-target plants.

Let new blueberry plants grow for two or even three years before allowing them to set fruit.
June 24, 2015

For a crop that may fruit for fifty years under the right care, it is critical to get blueberry plants off to a strong, healthy start.

Figure 1. SWD “sting” on a ripe sweet cherry. Image: University of California Statewide IPM Program, taken by Larry L. Strand.
June 24, 2015

Spotted wing drosophila (SWD), Drosophila suzukii, continues to be a problem for growers of soft-skinned fruit such as blackberry, blueberry, cherry (sweet and tart), and raspberry (black and red).

Image of bell peppers showing broad mite damage. Photo by Steve Bogash
June 22, 2015

Damage by broad mites can be quite severe on tomatoes and peppers so growers need to be prepared to protect crops with an effective miticide before these pests cause economic loss.

Extension Educator, Bill Lamont with Ron Davis and a load of plastic.
June 22, 2015

Since 1980 when I was a young Extension Vegetable Specialist at North Carolina State University, fresh out of the old Vegetable Crops Department at Cornell University, I have been involved in conducting applied research and extension programming on the utilization of plastics in agricultural applications.

Yellowing or chlorosis characteristic of basil downy mildew (Photo credit: Joan Allen, UConn).
June 18, 2015

To help growers manage basil downy mildew in Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture approved 24(c) labels for both Subdue Maxx and Hertiage for use on transplants grown for re-sale to consumers.

Black stem lesions characteristic of black leg on potato (Photo credit: Gary Secor, NDSU).
June 15, 2015

The recent prolonged wet weather has created conditions favorable for the bacterial disease blackleg on potato.

White colonies characteristic of powdery mildew on the upper leaf surface of tomato (Photo credit: Beth K. Gugino)
June 15, 2015

Prolonged periods of leaf wetness and high relative humidity create conditions that are perfect for pathogen spread and disease development!

Lesions characteristic of downy mildew on cucumber. Under humid conditions, purplish-gray sporulation will be visible on the underside of the leaf (Photo credit: Beth K. Gugino).
June 15, 2015

Although it is a littler earlier than usual to be thinking about cucurbit downy mildew in Pennsylvania, it has been confirmed on several cucurbit hosts including cucumber, cantaloupe, yellow squash, butternut squash and watermelon in several counties in South Carolina and most recently on cucumber in North Carolina.