The major fruit crop in Mississippi is blueberries, with more than 2,000 acres in production. Since blueberries are native to the Southeast and grow well in the pine belt of south Mississippi, commercial production of blueberries has been important to the horticultural economy of Mississippi since the 1970s. Mississippi State University Extension personnel work with blueberry growers to achieve maximum production, but they also strive for management practices that are sustainable. Although blueberries are the dominant crop, other fruit crops are important on a smaller scale, such as bunch grapes and muscadines, tree fruits (apples, peaches, pears, plums, and nectarines), citrus (kumquat, satsuma, Meyer lemon), blackberries, strawberries, and various other alternative fruit crops like figs, mayhaws, and persimmons.
Mississippi’s recent bout of bad weather came at a critical time for producers of blueberries, the state’s largest commercial fruit crop. Blueberries can be easily damaged by cold weather, but the timing of mid-February’s icy weather limited the potential damage.
It’s starting to get hot out there, y’all! Don’t let the Mississippi heat deter you from taking good care of your garden and landscape.
Blueberries are a nutrient- and antioxidant-rich food. Harvesting them at the peak of ripeness ensures you get the greatest health benefits and the best taste.
Interest in gardening has nearly kept pace with social distancing and self-isolation rates across the country as the COVID-19 pandemic has circled the globe.