How Many Hives Are Best for Florida Blueberries?

Karla Arboleda Berries, Pollinators, Research, Top Posts

By Karla Arboleda University of Florida (UF) researchers are working to establish honeybee hive recommendations specific to Florida blueberries. Right now, Florida blueberry growers rely on honeybee hive recommendations from research based in other states. Rachel Mallinger, an assistant professor in entomology at UF and part of the research team, said the amount of honeybees available to pollinate blueberries is …

crop insurance

Crop Insurance Deadlines Near in Florida

Dan Cooper Avocado, Berries, Florida, Fruit, Industry News Release, Pollinators

Avocado, Blueberry, and Pasture, Rangeland, Forage and Apiculture Producers Need to Make Insurance Decisions Soon Tallahassee, FL (FDACS-Oct. 14, 2019) — The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency (USDA RMA) are reminding Florida avocado, blueberry, pasture, rangeland, and forage (PRF) and apiculture producers that deadlines to apply for crop insurance …


EPA Registers Long-Term Uses of Sulfoxaflor While Ensuring Strong Pollinator Protection

Dan Cooper Environment, Industry News Release, Pollinators, Top Posts

Registration provides benefits to growers and is supported by strong science that shows minimal risks for pollinators. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is issuing a long-term approval for the insecticide sulfoxaflor— an effective tool to control challenging pests with fewer environmental impacts. After conducting an extensive risk analysis, including the review of one of the agency’s largest datasets on …

georgia blueberry

The Buzz on Blueberry Pollinators

Abbey Taylor Berries, Pollinators, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

Although blueberry growers spend much of their time and money keeping insects away, there are certain insects that are critical for their crop’s survival. Those insects are pollinators, bees in particular. If there are low populations of pollinators in the field, growers will eventually start to notice the repercussions. Rachel Mallinger, assistant professor in the University of Florida Entomology and …

Blueberry Fruit Size Improved with Pollination

Abbey Taylor Berries, Pollinators, Top Posts, VSCNews magazine

By Juanita Popenoe Honey bee pollination increases fruit set and yields in many fruit, but not all. Blueberries are supposed to respond to increased pollinator activity with greater yields. Some fruit growers routinely bring in bee hives to increase pollination, but how many are necessary? Highbush blueberry growers in Washington usually rent 10 hives of Italian honey bees per acre …

Florida Growers Facing Blueberry Challenges

Breanna Kendrick Berries, Pollinators, Top Posts

By Breanna Kendrick Citrus root weevil is relatively new to blueberries, but is becoming more of a prevalent issue for some Central Florida growers. Citrus root weevil typically occurs on old citrus ground that has been plowed under for blueberry production. Doug Phillips, blueberry Extension coordinator for the University of Florida (UF), has been trying to identify some controls against …

Varroa Mite Control Efforts Continue

Breanna Kendrick Pests, Pollinators, Research, Top Posts

By Breanna Kendrick Varroa mites have been in the United States since 1987, but there’s still not a good solution for controlling them. These mites impact honeybee colonies by feeding on the bees and vectoring viruses. The mites pass viruses around the colonies and make the bees very sick. Varroa control is tricky because the goal is to kill an …

The Buzz on Hollow Heart

Breanna Kendrick Pollinators, Top Posts, Watermelon

By Breanna Kendrick A lot of watermelon growers have had to deal with hollow heart this season. It’s not known for certain what causes hollow heart, but research is pointing toward pollination deficiency. Hollow heart is a separation of the cells in the flesh of the fruit, which causes a fissure to form. A fissure can form from stem to …