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Blueberry Crosses

1. Design crosses in September/October

2. Dig plants material from field if need be in December and before January 15

3. Make crosses in the GH Jan. 20-April 30. Don’t make crosses too late in year or fruit ripens when it is too hot in the GH which can be a problem. Plus we will be busy in the field.

4. You want the parent material to have about 800 hours of chill to pollinate. Talk with Benny to see where the plants are when dug. Then put in cooler if need be at 40. I week in the cooler at 40 is 168 hrs (1 month in cooler is 672 chill hours).

* if you have 2 coolers it is helpful to have all the females in one cooler and the males in the other.

* if you can’t fit everything in the cooler leave the cultivars with the highest chill requirement outside

5. Takes about 3 weeks for a chilled parent to have flowers to pollinate. 28 days with 24 hrs chill is 672 total chill hours

6. Pollinations usually last about a week.

7. Want to get about 500-1000 seed per cross.

8. Fruit can take about 1 month plus to ripen

9. Put ripened fruit in ziplock bag labeled with cross on it

10. Put fruit bag in fridge and pull out to add new ripened fruit each collection day.

11. It is ok if fruit rots in the bag in fridge you can still get seed out of it.

12. Usually does 10 crosses per year; Terry recommends no more than 40 in a year.

13. Best to cross every year. Be consistent.

ex. of pollination to fruit in GH:

cv into GH 2/16–open flwr 3/20–finish pollinating 3/26–harvest fruit 4/30-6/23