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Updated: September 16, 2021

Sunscald Very Prevalent in Peppers This Year

I know this seems very obvious to most growers as we have sunscald every year in our vegetable plantings. This year just seems to be especially bad as I have gotten several calls from growers about a strange problem in their peppers that looks like sunscald, but couldn’t be. The reason given that it could not be sunscald is because the plants have thick foliage and the fruit seem well covered.
Updated: September 15, 2021

Southern Blight Found Throughout Maryland this Season

Southern blight is a fungal disease that is most common in the tropics and subtropics, but also is found in the SE United States in the summer. In Maryland we usually find it in the southern part of the state in counties like St. Mary’s, Charles and Wicomico. It has been found this year in more northern counties such as Frederick, Montgomery and Baltimore.
Updated: September 15, 2021

High Soluble Salts a Problem in Some High Tunnels

Over the years several high tunnel (HT) growers have complained to me about how after 4-5 years of growing various vegetables (although tomatoes were the most grown) in their high tunnel they are seeing poorer yields and ‘unthrifty plants’. This seems puzzling because they have put a great deal of compost in their HT and the soil looks great. The problem I think is high soluble salts in the soil which will damage overall plant fitness and yield.
Soluble salt damage to peppers in a high tunnel
Updated: September 15, 2021

Good Time to Check for Root Knot Nematode in Vegetables

As this growing season winds down and for the next few weeks it is a good time to examine vegetable roots for root knot nematode (RKN). I would be suspicious of having RKN if my vegetables seemed to need more water than normal or wilted during the heat of the day and recovered later or plants had nutrient deficiency symptoms rarely seen in your fields and the addition of fertilizers did not seem to alleviate the deficiency symptoms.
Tomato roots without RKN infestation
Updated: September 14, 2021

Transmission of the Yeast Eremothecium Coryli to Fruits and Vegetables by the Brown Marmorated Stink Bug

The Brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB) Halyomorpha halys (Figs. 1 and 1a) was accidentally introduced into the United States in shipping containers arriving from Asia. The first confirmed specimen was collected in Allentown, PA in October 2001, although there is evidence that it was collected from black light traps in New Jersey as early as 2000.
BMSB adult
Updated: September 14, 2021

Thrips Feeding Damage to High Tunnel Peppers

Because of the bright sunny days we have had in the past 3-4 weeks as well as higher temperatures lately vegetables in high tunnels (HT) are highly susceptible to thrips and two spotted spider mite infestations because of the hot dry conditions.
Thrips feeding damage on pepper (left) and pepper plant with TSWV (right)
Updated: September 2, 2021

Insect Pest Management in Peppers

Insect Pest Management in Peppers
Updated: September 2, 2021

Brown Marmorated Stink Bug in Peppers

There has been a large and rapid increase in brown marmorated stink bug BMSB) in some pepper fields in the past week in central Maryland. Numbers just two weeks ago in these areas were very low with just a few nymphs observed. We know that BMSB populations tend to increase in August and through the fall into the first frost, but this was such a rapid increase that a great deal of damage was done to bell and banana peppers.
BMSB damage to bell and banana pepper, brown spot (yellow arrow) and bright white areas (green arrows)
Updated: July 26, 2021

IPM Threshold Guide for Vegetable Crops

IPM Threshold Guide for Vegetable Crops
Updated: March 22, 2021

2020-2021 Mid-Atlantic Commercial Vegetable Production Recommendations

Potatoes - 2020-2021 Mid-Atlantic Commercial Vegetable Production Recommendations