PRODUCTIVITY CHARACTERISTICS OF 15-TO 40-YEAR-OLD HIGHBUSH BLUEBERRY IN ROMANIAN SUBMOUNTAINE AREAS

Catalin Bădescu, Cristina Bădescu, E. Delian, A. Bădescu
Highbush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum L.) was first cultivated in Romania in 1968 by Professor N. Stefan. Using plant material imported from USA, two experimental fields were established in 1968 and 1980 in Bilcesti at an altitude of 840 m. Research in these fields has focused on productivity of plants ranging from 15- to 40-years old. In the field established in 1980 (Field 2), average yields of 15- to 18 year-old plants of 'Coville', 'Pemberton', 'Blueray', and 'Bluecrop' between 1994-2007 was 8.23-8.88 t/ha. In the field established in 1968 (Field 1), the average yields of 28- to 40-year-old plants from 1994–2007 was 11.53 t/ha for 'Coville' and 9.96 t/ha for 'Blueray'. In both fields, 1996-1998 were very high yield years. In 1998, 19-year-old 'Bluecrop' produced 25.57 t/ha and 30-year-old 'Coville' produced 24.96 t/ha. In 1997, 18-year-old 'Coville' produced 20.72 t/ha, in 1996 29-year-old 'Coville' produced 22.10 t/ha, and in 1996 29-year-old 'Coville' produced 22.72 t/ha. A theoretical yield for an hypothetical cultivar was calculated based on the maximum average values of several variables, including bush volume (Vt), cluster density (Dc), number of berries in a cluster (Nfc), berry size (g). The theoretical yield of 18.126 kg/ha corresponded to a yield of 48.34-60.42 t/ha at planting densities from 2,667–3,300 plants/ha. This very high theoretical yield suggests that the observed average yields of 8-11 t/ha only partially account for the potential yield of blueberry in these fields, especially considering some cultivars produced more than 11 t/ha (e.g. yield in 1997 was 11.45-13.48 kg/ha). Our data indicate the best predictors of blueberry yield in submountaine area of Romania are bush volume and cluster density. The contribution of these two factors accounts for 72% of the variation in yield. Berry size and number of berries on a cluster were not as strongly related to yield.
Catalin Bădescu, , Cristina Bădescu, , Delian, E. and Bădescu, A. (2009). PRODUCTIVITY CHARACTERISTICS OF 15-TO 40-YEAR-OLD HIGHBUSH BLUEBERRY IN ROMANIAN SUBMOUNTAINE AREAS. Acta Hortic. 810, 495-500
DOI: 10.17660/ActaHortic.2009.810.65
https://doi.org/10.17660/ActaHortic.2009.810.65
Vaccinium corymbosum, production, assortment
English

Acta Horticulturae