UF Study Shows ‘Aromatic’ Blueberries Taste Better

Jim Rogers Blueberries, Research

They may be called “aromatic” blueberries, but they don’t just smell nice — they taste good. University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) scientists now know why: These fruits contain just the right genetic combination to produce the chemistry required for a pleasant blueberry flavor. Growers and consumers always seek better-tasting fruit, compelling blueberry breeders like Patricio …

Freeze Events Impacted Southeast Blueberry Producers

Jim Rogers Blueberries

By Clint Thompson Florida’s conventional blueberry growers dodged the proverbial disease bullet this past season following a late January freeze event that impacted the Southeast. Georgia’s producers were not so fortunate with a mid-March freeze event, says Phil Harmon, professor and Extension plant pathologist at the University of Florida. “The big story early in the year was the late freeze. …

Blueberry Management for July

Jim Rogers Berries, Disease

University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) reminds Florida producers about what blueberry management tactics they need to consider as the calendar turns to July. Growers should scout for algal stem blotch, a key disease in southern highbush blueberries. It can stunt growth and cause yellowing in leaves. Farmers should also monitor and manage leaf diseases. They …

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 …

Extreme Weather Conditions: Georgia’s Vidalia Onions, Blueberries Impacted

Jim Rogers Georgia, Weather

By Clint Thompson Two of Georgia’s top specialty crops were impacted significantly by extreme weather events this spring; one positively and one negatively. Pam Knox, University of Georgia Extension Agricultural Climatologist, described the impact that the current dry conditions have had on onion harvests and the spring freeze events on the state’s blueberry crop. “The onion harvests this year, of …

Blueberry Production in Florida

Jim Rogers Berries, Florida, Research

Florida’s blueberry production, harvest and shipping season is well under way. Doug Phillips, the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) statewide blueberry Extension coordinator, discusses blueberry production in Florida. Q: In addition to Sentinel, what are some the latest blueberry varieties from UF/IFAS? What makes them interesting to the consumer? How about for the producer? A: …

Blueberry Freeze Impact: More Accurate Assessment Expected Next Week

Jim Rogers Berries, Georgia, Weather

By Clint Thompson The impact from last week’s sub-freezing temperatures on Georgia blueberries will not be known until late next week. Jerome Crosby, chairman of the Georgia Blueberry Commission, said more detailed scouting next week should yield an accurate assessment of where the crop stands heading into the upcoming harvest season. “We’re trying to get some numbers together, field scouting …