BlueFocus Newsletter- April 2022

Thursday, April 14, 2022

               bLUE FOCUS NEWSLETTER- April 2022

         (Perennia's Wild Blueberry Newsletter)


 Dear Wild Blueberry Growers, 

Welcome back to a new season of wild blueberry production! I hope you all have a great winter but maybe too much snow? As the ground starts to clear up, we look forward to a new growing season. I want to start to give monthly updates/newsletters to highlight things for the month in the industry, throughout the growing season.


2022 Nova Scotia Guide to Pest Management in Wild Blueberry

2022 Pest guide is now available to download at:

Weather Station Assistance Program

The program will accept applications until April 30, 2022. If you haven’t submitted your application, please be aware of the deadline. If you still have questions about the program. Please contact us. Here is the program application link:

Access On-Farm Weather Station Data

Currently, we have 20 weather stations set up across wild blueberry fields in NS. 6 in Colchester, 4 in Cumberland, 6 in Pictou and 4 in the south shore counties. You can access all stations’ data from the Wild Blueberry Blog: If you are looking for more details about how to access those data or if you are thinking of downloading Davis “WeatherLink” app to access more data, you can watch the presentation we did on April 1. YouTube link for the recorded presentation:


Growing Degree Days (GDD) Update

We are going to report GDD from those 20 stations in wild blueberry fields throughout the season. You can check the most current GDD from the stations/areas you are interested to know. Please go to:

Are you wondering what is Growing Degree Days? We just published a factsheet to explain this in detail, please go to this link and understand what is it:

On April 13, 2022, this is the information from all weather stations:

                                                              Figure 1. GDD summary- April 13th, 2022


Winter Damage

I visited Parrsboro and surrounding areas, fields near Oxford and Lynn Mt., as well as areas in Colchester (Murray Siding, Glenholme and Belmont). We don’t think winter damage is a concern for this year. However, there will be fields in the province that are prone to winter damage. Most of the fields I visited seemed to be safe, but I also saw fields with winter-killed stems (see the below photo). Please take a walk and observe your field, especially if you think winter damage is always a concern in your fields. If you like to share your observations with me, please contact me (Hugh Lyu, 902-890-0472, As I visit more fields in the next few weeks, I will get a better picture of the whole province’s situation.


Figure 2. Heath stem (left) and winter-killed stem (right)


Overwinter Beehive Health

 Nova Scotia beekeepers put 25,152 hives into winter last fall and are currently taking stock of winter colony mortality. An official report of winter loss estimates won’t be available until June. Despite observations of high Varroa mite populations last year, and reports of high mite loads in some operations this spring, reports based on conversations with beekeepers about winter survival have been mostly positive and suggest decent winter survival.


Percentage of Wild Blueberry Fruit Bud F2 Stage Tracker and Monilinia Blight

As monilinia season fast approaches, growers can expect to get updates on the percentage of F2 stage updates through our blog: Please scroll down to the bottom of the page and see the map. I will post % of F2 on fields I visit and information I receive from growers.

Table 1. Percentage of Wild Blueberry Fruit Bud F2 stage

Wild blueberry production regions, NS

The average percentage of floral buds at F2 or beyond



Cape Breton




Cumberland County



April 13- 0%

Mapleton (Lynn Mt.)

April 13- 0%



South West Nova Scotia




Hants County




Halifax County




Guysborough County




Colchester County


Murray Sidng

April 11- 0%


April 11-0%


April 11-0%



Pictou and Antigonish County



Here is some information about F2 and monilinia blight management.

                                   Figure 3. Wild Blueberry Floral Buds in F1 and F2 stages.


It is important to monitor plant development stages in your fields, especially if this disease has occurred in your fields previously. I encourage growers to go out to the fields and see how floral buds are developing.

When looking at fruit buds do not count dead fruit buds. To do that, you can walk your fields in a “W” pattern and collect 20-30 stems randomly. From those collected stems, count the total number of floral buds and the number of buds at the F2 stage or beyond. You can simply dive the number of F2 buds by the total number and times 100. This would you the % of F2. Please don’t count dead floral buds.

For monilinia to infect blueberry plants, there should have mummy berry spores, blueberry buds at a susceptible stage (F2 and above) and an infection period of long enough wet period and temperature. Only treat for Monillinia when blueberry buds are at least at 40% and before the next forecasted wet period.

For products to prevent monilinia infection, please refer to Perennia’s updated pest management guide for wild blueberry (2022): Please check with your processors or buys to see what products are allowable in their markets.


Monilinia Blight of Lowbush Blueberry:

Forecasting Mummyberry Fungus Infection: