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Self-fertile blueberries?

Posted by peachymomo Ca 8 (My Page) on
Tue, Jun 11, 13 at 15:31

I frequent several other forums that are more focused on decorative gardening and oftentimes I advise people who have planted a single blueberry bush to get at least one other cultivar to ensure proper pollination. Almost always they respond that the nursery said the bush would be self-fertile and they don't want a second plant.

Every source I have read says to plant at least two, preferably three different cultivars. I wonder if some more experienced blueberry growers have an informed opinion on this issue? Are there truly self-fertile blueberries, or is this another example of a salesperson telling the buyer what they want to hear?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Self-fertile blueberries?

  • Posted by fruitnut z7b-8a,4500ft SW TX (My Page) on
    Tue, Jun 11, 13 at 16:11

I had many in a greenhouse this year with no insects and 1 mph top wind speed. So I think it gave a pretty good test of self fertility.

The best setters were Star, Santa Fe, and Springhigh. They set every berry and tasted good.

The ones that set poorly after doing well with bumblebees were Sweetcrisp, Emerald, and Jewel.

RE: Self-fertile blueberries?

Blueberries are not reliably self pollinating up north here in michigan. Sure they'll self-pollinate, but the overall yield is a lot less. The 'bluecrop' used to be planted in whole blocks without pollinators, but that has changed. The only one that I know of that is reliably self pollinating, and planted in whole blocks is elliottt, one of the latest bearers.

RE: Self-fertile blueberries?

I dont take chances on pollinators I plant a different variety every 5 plants. As some are self fertile and some are not.

RE: Self-fertile blueberries?

The varieties that I have are Chippewa, Polaris, St Cloud, Friendship, and I think Northsky. These are "1/2 high" plants and are listed as needing cross pollination. At the beginning of the bloom, there wasn't any noticeable bee activity. However, the plants are interspersed well and it was windy. Midway through the bloom, the bees showed up. It looks like there is a very good berry set, but I'm not sure if the size will be affected by pollination problems.

My Bluecrop are my only full sized plants. They barely had any blossoms. Only the normal amount of desiccation dieback on the higher stems but the winter may have affected the blossom buds. Not sure why there weren't more survivors that were covered by snow.

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