New UF/IFAS Blueberry Cultivar Selection Tool Available for Growers

With the 2021 Florida blueberry season behind us, Florida growers will begin to determine whether they will plant any new blueberry cultivars and/or remove any existing ones. The UF/IFAS blueberry breeding program has developed a new tool to continue its assistance to growers in this task – a cultivar module included as part of the UF/IFAS Blueberry Growers Guide app. 

The UF/IFAS Blueberry Growers Guide was released as a phone app for both iOS and Android systems in December 2020. The first app module is a scouting guide to assist growers in field scouting for diseases, insect injury, nutrient deficiencies, and abiotic conditions (freeze damage, drought damage, etc.). The new cultivar module will assist growers with blueberry cultivar selection for planting or replanting of orchards.

“Since I started in this position, I have seen the need for more easily accessible information about what we do. This is why we developed the webpage ( with detailed information on UF blueberry cultivars. However, we are now more used to having information at our fingertips, and it is a natural progression to release this app for producers to have just that,” Dr. Patricio Munoz says. “This is part of a larger effort to help our producers to stay on top of the developments by the university, so they can remain competitive in this global market.” 

Munoz developed the vision for this new cultivar module, which was released in May 2021 (links below). Together with Doug Phillips, and in consultation with growers and other UF colleagues, they curated the information to be included. The app contains detailed information on southern highbush blueberry cultivars released by the University of Florida. This includes yield and fruit quality data, along with information on Florida region best adapted to, production system, use of hydrogen cyanamide, machine harvesting, cultivars with overlapping flowering times, and disease/insect susceptibilities. 

“I talk to blueberry growers throughout the state, and one of the questions I get asked most frequently is which cultivars will do well in their location,” said Doug Phillips, UF Blueberry Extension Coordinator. “This tool will assist growers in making cultivar-related decisions, with detailed information always available on their phones, instead of needing to look up publications or other information on a computer.”

Blueberry growers are encouraged to download and review this new cultivar module, and share your thoughts and ideas with the UF team at [email protected]




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