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What’s going on in your vegetable gardens?

Long summer days and high temperatures are in full swing, but that means it’s the time of year to be enjoying the bounty from our vegetable gardens! As you are working in the garden, from your containers to community plots, keep an eye on these three things – insects and diseases, weeds, and water control.

Water Management: Vegetables respond better if you water them deeply a few times a week rather than frequent light watering. Water long enough to penetrate the soil 4 to 5 inches. Drip irrigation and soaker hoses are preferred to overhead sprinklers.

Weed Control: Weed control should begin at the time of planting. Organic mulches and newspaper can help block weeds from germinating. Landscape fabric can also be used to block weeds while allowing vegetables to grow in small openings cut into the fabric. Discuss chemical control options with your Extension agent to ensure products are used correctly.

Insects and Diseases: Warmer temperatures bring an increase in insects and disease issues. Gardeners must be vigilant in looking at plants daily to catch the first signs of insect or disease damage.