|Pounders Jr, Cecil|
|Rinehart, Timothy - Tim|
Submitted to: HortScience
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 2/15/2014
Publication Date: 9/1/2014
Citation: Stringer, S.J., Marshall-Shaw, D.A., Sakhanokho, H.F., Pounders Jr, C.T., Rinehart, T.A., Adamczyk Jr, J.J. 2014. Potential new rabbiteye and southern highbush blueberry cultivars for the Southeastern U.S. HortScience. 49(9).
Technical Abstract: Development of new small fruit germplasm and cultivars, in particular blueberries, has been among the major objectives of the USDA ARS Thad Cochran Southern Horticultural Laboratory since the early 1970’s. Three elite blueberry strains including two rabbiteye (Vaccinium asheii) and one southern highbush (V. corymbosum) are among those currently being increased in completion of development for release as new cultivars. MS 794, a rabbiteye blueberry selection has been identified as a candidate for release and has desirable characteristics including plants having a semi-dwarf growth habit that drastically reduces the need for yearly pruning, a very early berry ripening period,and large light blue berries with high quality. MS 1230 is also a rabbiteye blueberry in the pipeline that has an upright growth habit with narrow crowns, high production potential, an early-mid season ripening period, and also has high berry quality. MS 1425 is a late season southern highbush blueberry that has exceptionally large high quality berries, many of which exceed 4g in weight . Upon release, these new cultivars will provide growers with rabbiteye blueberry cultivars suitable for the fresh berry market and a southern highbush blueberry that provides growers with opportunities to develop a specialty market for exceptionally sized fruit.