It is Japanese Beetle Season

Jim Rogers Berries, Grapes, Pests

The Japanese beetle is showing up in Georgia vineyards, according to the University of Georgia (UGA) Extension Viticulture Blog. In large enough numbers, Japanese beetles can be a severe pest of grapes during the summer, feeding mainly on foliage and rarely on the berries. New plantings are most susceptible. Older, established vines can withstand some feeding damage, but young vines …

Georgia Farmer Testifies About Imports Impact During Senate Hearing

Jim Rogers Berries, Exports/Imports, Georgia

By Clint Thompson A Senate hearing held on June 9 allowed one Georgia blueberry producer to discuss the challenge of competing against imports from other countries. Karla Thompson, representing JET Farms in Camilla, Georgia, testified in a hearing held by the Senate Subcommittee on Commodities, Risk Management and Trade. The discussion highlighted rising imports and their impact on Georgia producers. …

New UF/IFAS Blueberry Cultivar: Albus

Jim Rogers Berries, Research

By Clint Thompson University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) blueberry breeder Patricio Munoz is ready to release UF/IFAS’ newest cultivar this fall, Albus. Munoz described what growers can expect from Albus. “This is a high yielding, good flavored cultivar that’s going to be targeting the central part of the state where we have a lot of …

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Lack of Rain, No Problem for Alabama Specialty Crops

Jim Rogers Alabama, Berries, Weather

By Clint Thompson It may have been a dry spring and early summer across the Southeast, but some specialty crops actually thrived under the drought-like conditions. Chip East, Alabama regional Extension agent, discussed the impact the lack of rainfall has had on his farmers’ specialty crops in East Alabama. “Strawberries were good. Blueberries and blackberries are irrigated, and they look …

Storms’ Impact on Blueberries

Jim Rogers Berries, Research, Weather

By Clint Thompson Last weekend’s heavy rains in South Florida reminds the state’s blueberry producers the vulnerability of their crop during hurricane season. The combination of strong winds and prolonged rain showers provide a threat to blueberries, says Doug Phillips, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) blueberry Extension coordinator. “It depends on whether we get wind, …

Post-Harvest Control of Bud Mites Essential for Blueberry Producers

Jim Rogers Berries, Pests, Research

By Clint Thompson Multiple control methods are available for blueberry producers trying to manage bud mites. It starts post-harvest when scouting and management of the pests are most important, says Ash Sial, University of Georgia entomologist. “While they don’t seem to be a serious issue in most situations, in some situations they can causes extremely high levels of damage. Last …

Blueberry Management: What to do in June

Jim Rogers Berries, Disease, Research

Florida blueberry harvests have ended for the 2022 season, but management continues this summer. According to University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, growers need to be actively scouting for algal stem blotch. The disease is significant on southern highbush blueberries. It will stunt growth and cause leaf yellowing, as well as increased susceptibility to Botryosphaeria. Producers need …

Florida Field Day Features the Potential of Blackberries

Jim Rogers Berries

By Frank Giles In late May, the Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (GCREC) hosted growers interested in the prospect of producing blackberries in Florida. Several University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) scientists have been studying the crop in recent years. Zhanao Deng, UF/IFAS professor of environmental horticulture, is conducting trials of existing blackberry varieties at …