Archive for November, 2011

Spotted Wing Drosophila Survey

November 30, 2011

You still have time to help researchers determine priority areas to develop research & education priorities for spotted wing drosophila! Go to the link below to take a brief survey that will provide valuable input needed to address this blueberry pest. This survey ends Dec. 1 and your input is greatly appreciated!

Survey for Spotted Wing Drosophila research and education found here.


Blueberry exercises for youth

November 28, 2011

Falling temperatures mean many children will be staying indoors. Providing them with educational, fun activities needn’t be a challenge. Go to the link below for a variety of exercises for youth of all ages. These exercises can be used to teach young people about a variety of topics including math and science.

For more information, read Blueberry Youth Exercises.

Input requested on Spotted Wing Drosophila research and education priorities

November 22, 2011

Spotted wing Drosophila (SWD) is an invasive insect pest that has recently arrived in the Midwest from its original home range in Asia. For more information on the insect and its management, see our website at

SWD is a significant risk to the fruit industry, and we have a lot to learn about how best to tackle this insect. A group of research and extension staff at MSU and across the eastern US are seeking input from grower, consultant, and other industry stakeholders on the priority areas for us to focus our attention on.

A short survey has been developed and this is available online at this link: We request that you fill out the questions by December 1. This will only take 15 minutes of your time, and it will be very helpful information as we develop responses to this new challenge for fruit producers.

Thanks in advance for your input!

Small Fruit Freeze Protection Passive or Alternate Methods

November 22, 2011

This course covers: winter freeze dangers, species sensitivity, methods of protection, spring frost and freeze dangers, as well as methods of protection to use for protecting blueberry crops from freeze damages.

Learn about Small Fruit Freeze Protection Passive or Alternate Methods here.

Blueberries are out of this world!

November 21, 2011

NASA astronaut Dan Burbank

How will the crew aboard the International Space Station be celebrating Thanksgiving? With turkey, stuffing and all the fixings, but with a space twist.

NASA astronaut Dan Burbank describes their planned meal in a holiday message from the crew.

The meal will have smoked turkey, homestyle potatoes, NASA’s own cornbread stuffing, freeze-dried vegetables, and cherry-blueberry cobbler.

Of course, it all comes out of a pouch or can.

Click here to watch the message from Astronaut Burbank.

Blueberry Recipes for the Holidays

November 18, 2011

Blueberries are delicious and they’re good for you! As you’re creating your holiday menus, why not include some blueberry dishes? Click on Blueberry Recipes for dishes from cakes to cobblers to drinks to main dishes and more that are sure to please every palate! Let us know if you have a blueberry recipe you would like to share!

USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map

November 16, 2011

USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map

This hyperlinked map from the USDA shows 10 different zones, each of which represents an area of winter hardiness for the plants of agriculture and our natural landscape. It also introduces Zone 11 to represent areas that have average annual minimum temperatures above 40 F (4.4 C) and that are therefore essentially frost free.

The map shows 20 latitude and longitude lines. Areas above an arbitrary elevation are traditionally considered unsuitable for plant cropping and do not bear appropriate zone designations. There also are island zones that, because of elevation differences, are warmer or cooler than the surrounding areas and are given a different zone designation.

Read more about the

Website Attracts Readers!

November 16, 2011

A Google Analytics report shows we’ve had 99,040 pageviews at since we launched in August 2010! If you are looking for blueberry information, go to our website. Let us know if we don’t have what you are looking for!

Blueberries are Among Top Health Foods

November 11, 2011

Blueberries are nature’s No. 1 source of antioxidants among more than 50 fresh fruits and vegetables tested by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging.

LSU AgCenter nutritionist Beth Reames explains antioxidants are compounds that protect cells against damage by free radicals that form in the body. Uncontrolled free radical formation can cause cell damage that may lead to cancer, heart disease, inflammation and other health problems.

Blueberries’ deep blue color comes from pigments called anthocyanins that act as antioxidants. Blueberries also are a good source of vitamin C and fiber. One-half cup of blueberries has only 42 calories.

Read more of Blueberries are Among Top Health Foods.

Growers rely on Cooperative Extension Service

November 8, 2011

Long-term success takes leadership, and the growing community in his state has taken notice of Ed Robinette’s leadership skills. He is the president of the Michigan Cider Maker’s Guild, and the incoming president of the Michigan State Horticultural Society (MSHS).

When Robinette begins his term as president of MSHS in 2012, his goals will be quite clear. With legislative cutbacks forcing changes in Extension and other services Michigan growers have come to rely on, he wants to make sure MSHS members know what’s going on.

Read more about Growers rely on Extension.