INTELLIGENT IRRIGATION OF LOWBUSH BLUEBERRIES IN ATLANTIC CANADA
A four-year field study was conducted at two commercial sites in Atlantic Canada: Tracadie, New Brunswick and Debert, Nova Scotia to: 1) evaluate the use of the fully-automated Intelligent Irrigation System in the protection of lowbush blueberry plants from drought stress and spring frosts; and 2) investigate the impact of different irrigation regimes on plant vegetative and reproductive traits, vegetation dynamics and foliar diseases. The rainy conditions of the growing seasons minimized the need for irrigation and mitigated any treatment effects, thus rendering the results of the drought stress portion of the study inconclusive. However, the yield findings suggest that irrigating for frost protection holds promise where late spring frosts are common and coincide with flowering. The advisability of investing in any irrigation system for use in the commercial production of lowbush blueberries in Atlantic Canada will be dependent on emerging regional climate trends.
Privé, J.P., Russell, L., Hildebrand, P., Boyd, N. and Percival, D.C. (2012). INTELLIGENT IRRIGATION OF LOWBUSH BLUEBERRIES IN ATLANTIC CANADA. Acta Hortic. 926, 471-476
Vaccinium angustifolium Ait., variable-rate irrigation system, real-time monitoring