Production tips for vegetable gardens
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URBANA -- Production tips
for summer garden mainstays such as pumpkins, cucumbers, summer
squash, winter squash, muskmelons, watermelons and tomatoes can be
found on a University of Illinois Extension website, according to
Maurice Ogutu, a U of I Extension horticulture educator based in
He said that home
gardeners can find this information at
some guidelines for the popular garden plants home gardeners may now
be planning for the 2005 season.
planted during the last week of May to early June, when there is no
danger of frost in Illinois," he noted. "It is a drought-tolerant
plant but needs to be watered during extended dry periods. Moisture
supply is very critical at flowering and when the fruit is sizing."
Cucumbers are not
frost-tolerant and should not be planted until there is no danger of
frost. The plant needs an adequate amount of moisture for production
of a high-quality crop. One inch of water per week plus rainfall is
Summer squash is
another warm-season vegetable that can be grown during the
frost-free period. Its water requirements are very critical at
blossoming and the fruit development stage, and the garden needs to
be scouted for insect pests and diseases and sprayed when necessary.
Winter squash, as well, benefits from the same attention.
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steady moisture supply is important, but excessive moisture when
fruits have achieved a good size may lower the fruit quality," Ogutu
requires adequate soil moisture in early growth stages, and moisture
is also critical at blossoming and fruit development time.
Watermelons and other cucurbits are pollinated by bees, so use
insecticides cautiously by following label instructions regarding
bee toxicity when the plants are in bloom."
The popular tomato
can be grown from seeds or transplants and requires warm soil to
website has extensive information on the varieties and requirements
of tomato production," he said.
of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental
Sciences news release]