Blueberry varieties USDA-ARS Legacy (Grajera Nurseries) y University of Georgia Camelia are the ones that have been best adapted to the soil of the province of Huelva according to field trials carried out by researchers from the Institute of Agricultural and Fisheries Research and Training, Ifapa, of the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock, Fisheries and Sustainable Development of the Junta de Andalucía, which have been announced through an online seminar.
El investigador Luis Miranda has been in charge of publicizing the results of these trials that began in 2015. The Legacy and Camelia varieties have turned out to be the most productive, although the Ventura variety has been the earliest, a quality to take into account since it is ahead of the peak campaign that marks the production in the months of May and June. Camelia got a production count at the end of the campaign 6.958 kilos per plant, Legacy 5.502 kilos per plant and Ventura 2.230 kilos per plant. The rest of varieties remain with values below one thousand kilos per plant.
One of the problems it presents Camellia is that production is usually concentrated at the end of the campaign while Legacy It achieves a more regular and stable amount of kilos during the almost six months in which it is in production.
Both in caliber and weight of the fruit, the values between the five varieties are quite similar, although they stand out Ventura, Cupton and Camelia; and the same happens with the degrees brix, parameter in which they stand out Cupton, Camelia and Legacy in this order.
With regards to postharvest, All varieties except Star show similar behavior, showing the first signs of rot when the rest take up to a couple of months more.
Luis Miranda has highlighted the high percentage of dead plants that they have detected so it calls on breeders and nurseries to make a reflection on it and take the necessary measures so as not to pass on the problem to the producer.
And a significant fact that this trial has revealed refers to the sanitary problems that the soils of Huelva have with macrophomina phaseolina because there is, at the moment, no legal product for the Soil disinfection for bilberry. Precisely, the sanitary problems of the soil are one of the most important concerns shown by the technicians who dedicate themselves to this crop and which manifests itself every year at the Blueberry Technical Conference in the province of Huelva organized by the Huelva delegation of the College of Agricultural Technical Engineers of Western Andalusia, Coitand.
In this same session he has also participated Stephanie Rodriguez from the company Fall Creek with an intervention on the future of blueberries. Rodríguez assures that if it follows the same line as until now the consumption of blueberries at national and European level, the tendency will be to multiply blueberry consumption by several digits, so that, in a few years, it could go from the current 0,180 kilos per person at 0,860.
According to the blueberry production in the province of Huelva and in Spain, which continues to lead the European production ranking, points to the need to avoid production peaks in spring, lengthen the production campaign as much as possible and boost production at the time of year when a shortage of production is detected at national level as in its closest competitors that are Morocco and South Africa.
The representative of Fall Creek assures that blueberry production is growing in different European countries but that this increase will not be enough to supply demand in a few years if the upward trend is maintained, which is an opportunity for Spanish and Huelva producers.