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I hope that you’ve fared as well as possible with our recent temperature fluctuations.
Maybe spring weather is here to stay now. For historical perspective, according to NOAA (National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) data, during a recent 30-year period (1991-2020), there was a 20% chance of a freeze (32 degrees F or colder) in the Amite, Bogalusa, and Hammond areas after March 24, 17, and 23, respectively, and a 10% chance of a freeze after March 31 in Amite and Hammond, and March 24 in Bogalusa. (I’ve questioned whether the dates for Bogalusa are really a week earlier than for Amite and Hammond. It appears that the weather station on which these statistics are based is close to the paper mill, and I suspect that the temperatures there may be warmer, on average, than in the surrounding area.)
I wanted to let you know about a few things.
Dr. Eric Stafne (Mississippi State University Extension) asked me to share this information with commercial blueberry growers in Louisiana. While the event will be held in Mississippi, some Louisiana growers in this area have worked with Mississippi growers in the past (e.g., as part of the Miss-Lou Blueberry Growers Co-op).
The meeting will be from 11 AM till 1 PM at the USDA-ARS Thad Cochran Southern Horticultural Laboratory (810 Hwy 26 West, Poplarville, MS 39470).
From the organizers:
“Topics up for discussion
1. The future of mississippi Blueberry Growers and outlook. We all know the issues. Just trying to figure out who is left and type of operation.
2. Research coming out of the ARS station
3. Overview from MSU extension and the State agriculture commissioner and the farm bureau.
4. Future plans for locally produced products from blueberries- wine, juice breads and animal feed.
5. Food safety review.
The outcome of this informal meeting will be to draft a game plan for future suggested research, grants on marketing and tourism activities, finding additional growers support for harvesting innovation. And whatever else the group decides.”
More information is available on the LWAG website.
The updated IPM guides for blueberries and caneberries (blackberries/raspberries) are now available on the Southern Region Small Fruit Consortium website.
The 2022 versions of the strawberry and muscadine IPM guides, and the 2021 version of the bunch grape guide, are currently available. The updated versions of those may be posted soon, as well.
This handbook is updated each year by university faculty from across the southeastern US and has pesticide (fungicide/insecticide/herbicide) recommendations for vegetables, as well as a lot of general production information.
The Handbook can be downloaded, here.
I have a limited number of hard copies, as well.
This publication is available here.
Contact Mary Helen Ferguson, Ph.D.
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