A Billion Bees ‘From Away’ Are Essential to Maine’s Wild Blueberry Crop

Blueberries, Bee Health May 22, 2012|Print

Released May 21, 2012

DEBLOIS, Maine — The blueberry barrens of Down East Maine are literally buzzing this weekend with anticipation of a bumper crop of wild bush blueberries, given the recent importation of 1 billion honeybees trucked in from away to help ensure a hefty harvest.

“No bees, no blueberries,” said David Yarborough, the University of Maine Cooperative Extension Service’s wild blueberry specialist.

Field studies done in Washington County and elsewhere in Maine have shown that yields can be increased by as much as 1,000 pounds an acre for each hive servicing that acre, up to five hives per acre. Those results presume good weather, adequate soil moisture and good fertilization and pest management.


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