Blueberries in the tropics

Discussion in 'Fruit and Vegetable Gardening' started by BlueberryMania, Mar 19, 2009.

  1. Applenut

    Applenut Active Member

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    I'd have no idea what it would be labeled as there. Typically the manufacturer would tout it being "safer" than conventional insecticides like DOOM (Zote Wadudu Kufa!).

    Applenut
     
  2. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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    Hi its me again! Got a few questions:

    I have the sunshine blue variety from two seperate vendors. The plants from one vendor that have flowered and have had one blueberry are much smaller in height than the plants from the other vendor (these plants have not flowered yet and don't show any signs of flowering either).

    At first i thought that the plants were stunted because of the ph. But when I ordered new plants from the same vendor they were very short (10 - 15 cm in height) and had lots of flowers. The label says the plants are 2yrs old. Is it possible to have the same variety with two different growth patterns or are the plants younger than 2yrs?

    I also noticed some of my plants (which have not flowered) are branching out. Is this normal? And should I be prunning the smaller branches?

    Finally I had one blueberry on two of my plants but after heavy rains they fell off the plant. Could this be because the branch was not able to sustain the winds? My concern is about mummy berry.

    Sorry about all the questions but I guess its a learning curve for me.

    Thanks and Cheers!

    BBM
     
  3. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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    Hi Applenut

    There is a report by KARI which is specifically about acidic soil areas in Kenya. I know you were interested, it is availabe from the KARI website and its called:

    KARI Technical Note No. 11 June 2002
    Acidic soils in Kenya: Constraints and remedial options

    http://www.kari.org/Tech_Notes/TecNote11.pdf


    Cheers! BBM
     
  4. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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    Hi there
    Got a few questions:

    Do you know if there is a difference between sulphur powder and garden sulphur or flowers of sulfur or are they the same thing?

    Would you know if I can use pumice for my blueberry potting mix?
    Can I use an African Violet potting mix for blueberries?

    Thanks and Cheers

    BBM
     
  5. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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    Hi there its me again.

    Does anyone know if blueberry plants can get the "black spots" fungus? I have lost 3 of my new plants to some strange disease and the fourth plant is on its way. I get these tiny black (or really dark brown) spots on the stem and eventually (2-3 days) the whole stem turns black and it dies. Its not scale insects. I don't know if its some other blueberry disease. I am hoping to save the plant. Please help!

    Cheers!
    BBM
     
  6. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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    Hi there.

    I figured out that my plant had bacterial blight and had I just pruned the twigs out early it wouldn't have spread. Unfortunately my plant did not survive.
    On the brighter side I still have 6 plants. One of them is doing well and I can finally see some flower buds forming. The other one also has some flower buds but its got very few leaves and stems.
    The other four are in a different location and are surviving but they don't look so good. I checked the ph and its seems okay but some of the leaves are very light green including the internal veins. On some plants the tips are turning reddish purple. I read somewhere that it could be a phosphorus deficiency. These plants also have a lot of bugs eating away at the leaves. I have sprayed a neem based pesticide for this.
    I personally think the problem is the drainage of the soil. The soil has coir mixed with an African violet potting soil that contains gypsym and organic matter. But we have been getting a fair amount of rain and I think its affecting the plants. I wanted to amend the soil by adding some more coir and pumice stone.
    How would I do that without disturbing the plant? Any suggestions? Should I trans-plant it into another pot or should I add the amendments (coir and pumice) to the current pot? My worry is that trans-planting might damage the root system as they are well established. I could move it with together with the soil??

    I would really appreciate some assistance. Also how can I add phosphorus to the plant?

    Cheers!

    BBM.
     
  7. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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  8. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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  9. affankewl

    affankewl Member

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    hi bbm,
    I went through your posts,i think u can help me.i wanted to know how your plants are doing now. Also if you would be line enough to let me know where to get blue berry plants, or if there is a chance of of viewing yours
     
  10. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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    Hi there

    Blueberries are pretty easy to grow just make sure the ph is right and the soil is right. I have a tonne of information I can send it to you.

    As for Blueberry plants you can't get them here in NBI. You can either purchase seeds (but those take 3 years +) or you can order the plants from South Africa, England etc. The problem is the health permit is way to expensive from here and the price of the plant then costs a lot. So if you are planning to order its best you order lots of plants.

    I may order somemore in a few months will let you know how that goes.

    Cheers!

    BBM
     
  11. affankewl

    affankewl Member

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    so where you going to order them from, south or UK?? i got family in both places.
    and maybe if you can direct me as from where to arrange a health certificate from, i got a few contacts locally n maybe i can arrange to get it easily.
    one more thing,which oher plants do you think worth getting which you dont get locally.
     
  12. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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    Hi there

    Sorry its been a while since I have been around. To respond to your question order them from the Uk since its winter there and by the time you get your plants you can plant them right away. If your order them from SA they will be in full bloom as its summer there. I am ordering some more plants in a few months so will let you know when I get them.

    Hope this helps.

    BBM
     
  13. BlueberryMania

    BlueberryMania Active Member

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    Hi All

    Got a few questions:

    My healthy plants had green berries on them by mid August. Its November and very few of them are turning blue although they aren't completely ripe (Still kind of sour). The others are still green or gaining a maroon color. Is this normal. Do they really take this long to ripen?

    My unhealthy plants have started to deteriorate very quickly. They seem to have bacterial twig blight. I have pruned the branches out but in the process I had to cut out the flower and leaf buds. Is there any chance of the plant reviving itself?

    Finally the ph of the soil in my unhealthy plants as slightly high. I have added sulfur for the last two months but the ph doesn't seem to go down. Any ideas?

    Thanks and Cheers!

    BBM
     
  14. DeKlavFarms

    DeKlavFarms New Member

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    Hi BBM,

    How are your blueberries doing? Been thinking of trying to grow them in Nairobi.

    DeKlavFarms
     
  15. Delvi83

    Delvi83 Active Member

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    Ladybugs are the "natural" solution for aphid :)
     

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