Warm weather and moisture

This year is shaping up to be a challenging year for gardeners following a cold spring that moved directly into a very warm summer. A recent update received from Joe Hannan, ISU Commercial Horticulture Specialist, was that the forecast for the next 30 days (and likely beyond) is for things to stay abnormally warm.

As we look beyond 30 days, the projection is that warm temperatures will likely continue but look for moisture to return to normal amounts or below for July and August. Keep in mind that even with average rainfall, soil moisture will be rapidly depleted due to the continuous warm temps. Joe also mentioned he was in an orchard last week south of Indianola and the soil there was bone dry 4+ inches down. Gardeners may want to take a look at what resources were used during the 2014-2015 drought growing season in case conditions do start to dry out.

Did you know? Reports from campus are while we are getting warm daytime temperatures, the nights are cooling off. This is a good thing when it comes to fruiting crops as it helps fruits develop favorable sugar and acid profiles. Expect the eating quality of tomatoes, melons, etc. to be very good this year if this trend continues.

Horticulture Questions? Contact McCormick at yvonne@iastate.edu for information or advice.