Strawberries and Blueberries

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Information about Strawberries and Blueberries

Published on January 22, 2008

Author: Regina1


Robinson Station Field Day:  Robinson Station Field Day September 28, 2006 Strawberries and Blueberries:  Strawberries and Blueberries Amanda Sears Extension Associate for Horticulture General Fruit Information:  General Fruit Information Soil Test Air Drainage East or North facing slopes Higher elevations Movement of air away from the plant on cold spring nights Internal Soil Drainage No soil compaction Mulch, high in organic matter Irrigation 1 to 2 inches per week Plan in Advance Planting Times:  Planting Times Expected Fruit Yields for Mature Plants:  Expected Fruit Yields for Mature Plants Strawberries 1 ½ lb/ft of row Blueberries 6 qt./bush 5th year Slide6:  Strawberries Site Preparation:  Site Preparation pH 6.0 to 6.5 Get rid of weeds early rotation + broad spectrum post emergent herbicides summer before planting Plow in Fall Plant cover crops Fertilize in Spring In Spring disk and harrow ground Site Preparation:  Site Preparation Avoid sites that grew Solanaceous or bramble crops during prior three years. Plasticulture is not recommended in Kentucky not economically sound Varieties:  Varieties June Bearers One large crop for 2-4 weeks in Spring Produce full crop second year Last 3 to 7 years Ever Bearers Heat reduces size and quantity Produce berries all summer and fall Total volume of berries less than that of a June Bearer Choosing the Right Cultivar:  Choosing the Right Cultivar Fruit good size, attractive appearance, and good quality Reputable nursery Grows plants themselves Dormant, virus free plants Northern plants tend to be healthier Disease resistance red stele (a root fungus), verticillium wilt, leaf spot, and leaf scorch Cheap plants are not necessarily cheap Recommended Varieties:  Recommended Varieties Earliglow - early, good flavor and quality, shows good resistance Cavendish - testing in KY, early to midseason, large firm fruit, may suffer from white shoulders Delmarvel - early to midseason, flavorful, aromatic, dark red Recommended Varieties:  Recommended Varieties Jewel - mid season, large, firm texture, good color, excellent flavor Red Chief -mid season, fruit glossy and medium sized, and moderate flavor Ovation -late season, large berry, excellent resistance When Plants Arrive:  When Plants Arrive If frozen, allow to soak for a couple of hours Heel in plants Cold storage, just above 35F Planting:  Planting Prune plant’s roots Keep plant roots moist while planting Plant by hand or with setter Do not double up roots. Soil depth needs to be even to the crown Plant spacing of 3½ to 4 feet between rows, and 1 to 2 feet in row Planting Care :  Planting Care Follow: ID-93, Kentucky Commercial Small Fruit and Grape Spray Guide Cultivate frequently Bloom removal the first season Trim back late forming runners Fertilization:  Fertilization 5 lbs of 10-10-10 per 100 feet of row after fruiting in June or July 5 lbs of 10-10-10 in August at time of flower bud set Mulching:  Mulching Apply when temperatures approach 20F, or when leaf color turns from green to gray Apply 1.5 to 2 T/Acre (69-92 lb/100 sqft) by hand, manure spreader, or with a mulching machine You need to be able to see a few leaves through the mulch, or plant may be smothered Strawberry Harvest:  Strawberry Harvest No harvest the first year after planting with the matted row system. Harvest begins in May. and lasts two or three weeks heaviest in the first four to six days Berries ripen 28 to 30 days after first bloom. Must be picked every other day. Storage:  Storage Store at 33 to 35F, humidity of 90-95%. Can be stored for two to four days. At 30F, can be stored up to 7 days. Strawberry Renovation To Begin Right After Harvest:  Strawberry Renovation To Begin Right After Harvest Determine if planting is worth renovating. Apply 2,4D (amine) for broadleaf control by July 15. Strawberry Renovation:  Strawberry Renovation 3. Mow 4 to 5 days after 2,4D application. 4. Fertilize with 50-60lbs/acre N plus P and K if needed in soil test. 5. Do you need to subsoil? Strawberry Renovation:  Strawberry Renovation Cut row width. Cut half the row (left side or right). -Throw a fine layer of soil over the crowns to rejuvenate the mother plants. Thin plants to 5 to 6 inches in row. Cultivate Strawberry Renovation:  Strawberry Renovation 9. Apply herbicide (ID-93) Dacthal Devrinol- inhibits runners Sinbar-can kill strawberries 10. Irrigate especially after application of herbicides if conditions are dry. Strawberry Spray Schedule:  Strawberry Spray Schedule Slide25:  Slugs Grubs Sap Beetles Leaf Spot Slide26:  Blueberry Production Blueberry History:  Blueberry History One of the few crops native to America. Increasing in popularity. Different Varieties: Highbush Blueberry Rabbiteye Blueberry Lowbush Blueberry Huckleberry “Youth Berries”:  “Youth Berries” Flavanoids and antioxidants decrease the bodies oxidative stress Pterostilbene lowers cholesterol Good source of fiber Proanthocyanidins prevent urinary tract infections and stave off eye fatigue Resveratol reduces the risk of heart disease and cancer Found to have anti bacterial properties Amending pH :  Amending pH pH of 4.5 to 5.2 Available soil calcium is below 2500 pounds per acre the site can usually be effectively acidified Most soils can be amended with finely ground sulfur or aluminum sulfate to adjust the pH level Cultivar Selection:  Cultivar Selection Ripening difference Frost protection Longer harvest period Nursery selection Fruit characteristics Desirable Qualities:  Desirable Qualities Large size Light blue Firm fruit Resistance to cracking Long shelf Life Nice aroma and flavor Mulch:  Mulch 4-6 inches deep, to be reapplied when decomposed to 3 inches. One to two years Post-harvest Pine Needles Straw Woodchips Sawdust Planting:  Planting North-south orientation Use 2-3 year old plants Planting distances: 10-14 feet between rows and 4-6 feet between plants Make holes several inches deeper than root Raised beds, improve drainage Mix one gallon wet peat moss with soil in the bottom Water thoroughly Do not fertilize at planting Fertilization:  Fertilization Sidedress with 0.1lbs of ammonium sulfate per plant at bloom and six weeks later. Increase 0.1 lbs per year until you reach 0.3 lbs Sulfur coated urea (if pH < 5.0) Osmocote Plus Check soil test Apply completely around the bush Pollination:  Pollination Flower shape Bumblebees vs. honeybees Hive number Good pollination = larger berry 65 seeds 80% blossoms Cross pollination Pruning:  Pruning Leads to more vigorous plants and larger, earlier berries Decrease number, increase size of berry February to bud break Pruning:  Pruning Remove diseased or injured wood Less vigorous canes at ground level or cut back to young shoots Do not want canes over 5-6 years old Weak, brushy, or twiggy wood should be removed Up to 20% of wood can be removed without decreasing yields Harvesting:  Harvesting June 1st to July 25th Requires one to two days to develop full flavor Commercial growers pick once a week Slide39:  Japanese beetles Birds Slide40:  Questions? Sources:  Sources Indiana Berry and Plant Co. 1-800-295-2226 Lewis Nursery and Farms, Inc. 1-910-675-2394 Nourse Farms, Inc. 1-413-665-2658

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