Blueberry Field Day Aims to Increase Grower Competitiveness

Abbey Taylor Berries, Research, Top Posts

New varieties were a hot topic at the Florida Blueberry Growers Association’s (FBGA) spring field day. The event was held on March 7 at the University of Florida (UF) Plant Science Research and Education Unit in Citra. Ryan Atwood, a blueberry grower and vice president of the FBGA, says new varieties from UF will make…

Growers’ Needs Steer Blueberry Breeding

Jaci Schreckengost Berries, Top Posts

Blueberry breeders continue to try to improve varieties as grower needs and markets change. Scott NeSmith, professor at the University of Georgia's Department of Horticulture, said there are three main challenges that are facing blueberry growers right now that breeders are working to solve. The first challenge is to avoid times where the crop could…

Multiple Methods for Fighting Spotted Wing Drosophila

Jaci Schreckengost Berries, Pests, Top Posts

Researchers are investigating new behavioral and cultural controls to help protect crops from spotted wing drosophila (SWD). SWD has been attacking many crops, such as small berries, and leaving growers with devastating losses, said Ashfaq Sial, assistant professor at the University of Georgia. This pest is such an issue for growers because there is a…

Battling Blueberry Diseases

Jaci Schreckengost Berries, Top Posts

Predictive systems and preventing new diseases in blueberries were topics Phil Brannen addressed at the 2018 Southeast Regional Fruit and Vegetable Conference in Savannah, Ga., in January. Brannen is a professor and Extension plant pathologist at the University of Georgia. Predictive systems can benefit growers by letting them know when their disease risks are highest…

Georgia Blueberry Industry Optimistic for 2018

Jaci Schreckengost Berries, Top Posts

While chilling hours are still a factor for a successful season for Georgia blueberry growers, industry leaders are staying optimistic about 2018. Brandon Wade, president of the Georgia Blueberry Growers Association, spoke with AgNet Media's Josh McGill in October at the Produce Marketing Association's 2017 Fresh Summit in New Orleans, Louisiana. "If we don't have…

Low-Chill Blueberry Cultivars for Florida

Abbey Taylor Berries, Top Posts

Jeff Williamson, professor in University of Florida’s horticultural sciences department, spoke at the Fruit Crop Management Short Course in November about newer blueberry cultivars and their success in Florida. The three newer varieties Williamson discussed were Arcadia™, Avanti™ and Endura. Arcadia™ is a low-chill cultivar, requiring less than 200 hours of chilling. According to Williamson,…

Research for Managing Nematodes in Strawberry Crops

Jaci Schreckengost Berries, Strawberry, Top Posts

Researchers at the University of Florida's Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (GCREC) in Wimauma are testing new ways of managing nematode pests as they continue affecting strawberry crops across the state. Johan Desaeger, a nematologist at GCREC, said strawberry growers have faced issues within the last year with species of nematodes that are lesser…