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Problems with blueberry bush nor fruiting

Hi there. I have three blueberry bushes next to each other.  I planted two originally and they produced lots of fruit.
I then added a third after the other two had matured a bit (2 years later)and over the last two years two of the plants (the new one and the one old one) are producing little fruit, which do not grow beyond small blue buds
There is something on the stems of all three which look like 1 cm circles which are slightly enlarged over the surface
Any ideas?
Thank you in anticipation


  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,384
    edited June 2020
    I think we'll need a photo to be able to diagnose.  In the meantime, have a look at scale insects as a possibility:
    In general, the important things to consider when growing blueberries are firstly to ensure they are growing in acid soil and (especially if in containers) that the soil is never, ever allowed to dry out.  Always water with collected rainwater if you can, as tap water is often alkalne.  A fortnightly feed with an ericaceous liquid food (often marked for use on azaleas/rhododendrons) once they start flowering will help with fruit formation.

    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.

  • Thanks for the response Here are some photos. You can see the difference between the fruits on each bush.  I also send a picture of the lumps on the bush
    Any help greatly appreciated
    Thank you
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,384
    The bumps on the stem in the last photo are definitely scale insects.  You can physically remove them by gently scraping them off - be aware it is a bit messy.  Others will recommend that you dab them with a cotton-bud soaked in methylated spirit which will kill them (note that vodka, gin etc won't work as the alcohol content is too low.)
    Obviously, you don't want to spray pesticides on fruit, so physical removal is always my recommendation.
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Posts: 11,286
    Completely agree with Bob.
    I noticed scale insects on mine a couple of months ago.
    I spent about an hour scraping them off with a fingernail and I can't see any now.
    It wasn't a very pleasant hour, but my bushes are healthy and loaded with fruit this year

    Billericay - Essex

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • That's brilliant thank you.  Is that the cause of the small fruit?
  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Posts: 11,384
    Very probably (although lack of water during hot dry spells also causes that.)
    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
  • Thank you.
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