Blueberry Twilight Meetings start May 9 in Van Buren County

Pre bloom Blueberry IPM Twilight meetings are scheduled for Thursday, May 9, in Van Buren County and Tuesday, May 14, in Ottawa County.

Burst of leaf budsThe warm weather has blueberries growing rapidly towards bloom. At bloom, grower’s pest management focus changes from protecting the shoots from mummyberry shoot strike to pollenating the blueberry flowers and then protecting the fruit from insects and diseases. Michigan State University Extension has planned twilight blueberry management meetings for Van Buren and Ottawa counties. These meetings keep blueberry growers abreast of conditions in the field during the growing season. Meetings are planned for bloom and just before harvest. Similar meetings will be held in Van Buren County and then repeated the next week in Ottawa County. Each meeting features MSU Extension specialists and educator speaking on recent crop developments and upcoming events in blueberries.

The first pair of meetings begins next week from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Two RUP credits will be available. There is no charge for these meetings with registration at the door. We encourage all blueberry growers to attend these important updates.

The Van Buren County meeting will be on Thursday, May 9. This meeting is hosted by Leduc Blueberry Farms at their processing facility at 33818 County Road 653, Paw Paw, MI 49079 (view map). For more information, call Mark Longstroth at the Van Buren County MSU Extension office at 269-657-8213 ext. 3 or email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

The Ottawa County meeting will be on Tuesday, May 14, and the site will be announced next week. For more information, call Judy Hanson at the Ottawa County MSU Extension office at 616-994-4548 or email .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

The agenda for the May prebloom meetings includes:

  • Rufus Isaacs, MSU ― Bloom and post-bloom insect control and effective insecticide use.
  • Mark Longstroth, MSU Extension ― Using fungicides effectively for blueberry disease control at and after bloom.
  • Carlos Garcia-Salazar, MSU Extension ― Winter and spring injuries in Michigan blueberries.

The second pair of meetings is scheduled for mid-June and will focus on preharvest and harvest issues in blueberries. These preharvest meetings are tentatively scheduled for Wednesday, June 20, in Van Buren County and Wednesday, June 27, in Ottawa County. The site and agendas for the preharvest meetings have not been finalized.

Photo credit: Mark Longstroth, MSU Extension

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