August 12, 2010 at 9:09 a.m.
Last week I wrote about how bad keeper onions looked. The stems are turning brown and dying back and many have stopped growing. This was prompted by several gardeners who were concerned. Since most of the onion sets came from Texas and with the heavy rains they had at digging time, and since onions do not like excessive moisture, I assumed that was the reason for a bad onion season.
Many of the Master Gardeners have received calls from gardeners stating that most of the vegetables in their gardens look bad. In fact, that includes some of the Master Gardener's gardens, including mine. Some of my tomatoes just sit there not growing with the bottom leaves turning yellow. I received a call from a gardener asking why his squash plants look great but the blossoms are falling off. Another asked the same question about his cucumbers. I know what they are talking about because the same thing is happening to my peppers.
We have received similar concerns about just about everything grown this summer. I do know from past years that if some plants bloom during a very hot spell, the blossoms would fall off before being pollinated.
Donna Tatting, one of the Master Gardeners who also writes articles for the papers is not satisfied with theories. She is going to contact Michelle Grabowski, UMN Extension Educator, and see if the University has scientific research as to what's going on.
Remember that the Almelund Threshing Show is coming up Friday, August 13-August 15. Our building is located next to the courthouse and behind the bison corral. Bring samples of your garden problems as there will be some very experienced Master Gardeners to help identify the problem.
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