Mr. Blueberry of South Ohio
|Located in the village of South Ohio Nova Scotia are the blueberry fields of John Daley. John can be seen on the left inspecting the operation of one of the raking tractors. On the right is John with another half ton truck load of containers for the berries.|
|Most years before picking the field is filled with berries. This year 2004 was one of the worst years John has had. A very damp spring and contracted spraying not carried out, resulted in a significant loss in productivity. Weather, animals such as deer, bear and birds especially seagulls, can also have a serious effect on yields.||
|If the rakers are properly adjusted almost all berries will be removed from the bushes. While I was there one of the three rakers was not set at the right speed and half the berries were left on the branches or crushed. It was not long before John noticed the problem and had it corrected. The rakes were turning to slow. Once adjusted raking went normally. From start to finish a vigilant eye must be kept on all aspects of production.||Even the attitude of the bees can effect productivity. John referred to the domestic bees he had as "Union Bees" . Unlike the wild variety that worked from dawn to dusk, these had more of a tendency to start at around 9:00 am and stop at 4:30 pm.|
||The blueberries in South West Nova ripen a week of so before those
in the valley. This enables the equipment to be used in this area
first and then the Valley and more northern parts of Nova Scotia later.
The blueberry is a hardy plant, almost a weed, the tractor driving over
the plants does not do any damage to the plants.
Blueberries are a succession plant. Old fields that are abandoned will go through a series of changes from grass to shrubs and as the soil becomes more acidic conditions that favour blueberries develop. Burning and herbicides maintain conditions favourable to the continuation of the berry in that location. Occasionally the field is completely mowed eliminating all weeds.
||The blueberry will then have an advantage, because of it's extensive
root system, to dominate the area. Fields are picked every second year.
Several years ago the 4 acre field down back produced 18,000 pounds of
berries while last year it yielded only 10,000 pounds.
At one time John use to hand pick the berries. This meant hours of stringing lines across the field and then trying to get workers to harvest on hot summer days. He also had to make sure that no spots were missed, contend with worker fatigue, longer picking times of several weeks and inclement weather. With three machines the crop can be picked in one day, which helps to assure maximum crop quality. These machines have revolutionized the blueberry industry.
Once picked the berries are trucked to a Kemptville fire hall where they are weighed and that same day shipped to the valley for processing. From field to finished product in 24 hours insures product quality.
||Pictures on the left show the new blueberry harvester developed by
the Province of Nova Scotia. Each tractor can do about two acres
a day. These machines came from Oxford, N.S. They will spend
about 9 days in his area them head home to harvest the crops in their area.
About 75 percent N.S. of present production comes from Cumberland County.
Only about 1% of the berries come from the Yarmouth area. In 1993
over 30,000,000 pounds of berries were harvested in Nova scotia. Map
John plans on expanding his fields, with the purchase of about 10 more acres in the Kempt area. At best he has produced about 6000 pounds of berries per acre. It is an iffy prospect and that yield could easily be cut to less than half by adverse conditions.
|On the left is a piture of Don & Marlin Burns doing a bit of picking
along the edges before the rakers go through.
On the left is Richard Devine who has several blueberry fields net to John's. Because of deer and poor spring weather his productivity was down by more than half of last years yield.
berry is probably the most commonly known disease of blueberry. It is caused
by the fungus Monilinia vacinii-corymbosi. The most conspicuous symptom
of the disease is the mummification of infected berries. Picture to the
left are mushroom-like apothecia that germinate from mummy berries on the
ground in the spring. These contain ascospores which cause shoot blight.
For more information go to BLUEBERRY
DISEASES IN MICHIGAN.
The disease can be controlled by spraying, but there is a very narrow window of 72 hours in which this must be done. Picture on the right shows small pinkish white berries among the mature. These are what we refer to as mummy berries. Once infected a field must be sprayed every year. Only specific chemicals can be used on a field. Berries are checked before processing and if banned chemicals are detected the whole shipment is rejected.
|1||John & Richard|
|2||Matthew Surette on raker|
Blueberries are native to North America with large stands in the Maritimes and coastal New England. In 1976, the high bush berries began to be cultivated in Ontario. Surprisingly, acid rain has stimulated the growth of natural stands of low bush berries in some inland areas by reducing the pH level of the soil. (S)
|History||History of Nova Scotia Blueberry industry|
|www.wildblueberries.com||So blue, so sweet, so distinctly different, lowbush WildBlueberries are the healthy little berries from Maine, Atlantic Canada and Quebec.|
|.||Natures # 1 antioxidant||Recent USDA studies show that Wild Blueberries are a tasty way to eat right and stay healthy. Scientists at the Jean Mayer USDA Human Nutrition Research Center on Aging ranked blueberries #1 in antioxidant activity compared with 40 other commercially available fruits and vegetables.|
|Blueberries in Nova Scotia||The most common species of blueberry harvested in Nova Scotia is the wild low bush type, known scientifically as Vaccinium angustifolium.|
|www.blueberrystore.com.||Something special has been created to help you celebrate Canada's long relationship with its favouriteberry.|
|ORGANIC BLUEBERRY CULTURE||On most sites, blueberries are relatively free of disease and insect pests, but weeds are an ever present problem.|
|Blueberry Recipes||Top 50 links from google|
|Homemade Blueberry Wine||Lee Etherington | winemaking.com | finevinewines.com ||
|A few odd ones||Blueberry Hamburgers | blueberry-soup recipe | blueberry butter|
|2.||A Fictitious Story||When they got on the land and up the hill they saw blueberries the size of melons.|
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