Mummy berries

Asked July 10, 2019, 5:09 PM EDT

We have a small 2 acre blueberry farm and are experiencing a problem with mummy berries .. we need to know how to control them and we are essentially an organic operation... help please

Washington County Oregon organic production blueberries small farms mummy berry

1 Response

Hello,
Some organic blueberry farmers keep their rows clear of weeds and then look for mummy berry mushrooms emerging from the soil in the spring. During that time they knock them off by driving through the orchard with sticks tied to a harrow - gerry rigged ways of skuffing the soil to knock down all the tiny mummy berry mushrooms. This article has a photo of the mushrooms that release the spores: https://www.goodfruit.com/managing-mummy-berry/ .

Spores are released from the mushrooms by rain splash and infect berries. Another organic blueberry grower told me they grew cover crops in the row so that they interrupted rain drops and reduced the downward impact of rain and the upward dispersal of the spores, and noticed reduced mummy berry pressure.

Here's an Extension publication with more info: https://catalog.extension.oregonstate.edu/sites/catalog/files/project/pdf/em9117.pdf

You could also reach out to these colleagues who know much more about this that I do:
Javier Fernandez-Salvador: https://cropandsoil.oregonstate.edu/users/javier-fernandez-salvador
Wei Yang: https://anrs.oregonstate.edu/users/wei-yang
Bernadine Strik: https://extension.oregonstate.edu/people/bernadine-strik
Best regards,