Blueberries Cranberries and Grapes (New Jersey)
Coordinated by Peter Oudemans (, 
Department of Plant Biology and Pathology, Rutgers University


Blueberries and cranberries represent a combined value of utilized production of approximately $80,000,000 - $100,000,000 for New Jersey annually. Wine grapes are identified as the fastest growing crop in New Jersey and in 2012 over 60 wineries produced approximately 1.6million gallons of wine. These crops are typically propagated using vegetative cuttings so that specific varieties can be maintained. 

Cranberries (Vaccinium macrocarpon). Source:Pixabay


Under this grant we would seek to improve reporting of phenology based events so that models such as those used in grape and blueberry could be improved or validated.

Next, we will teach growers the principles of NCPN and help establish protocols for quarantine, self-evaluation as well as to generally raise awareness of invasive species of pathogens and weeds and teach methods for defense.

We will also assist in training growers with selecting, establishing and maintaining weather stations to ensure reliable results.

Finally we will develop effective tools for identifying the most problematic weeds as well as early signs of herbicide resistance and for selecting weed management options that help growers reduce their reliance on herbicides.

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Several new viral diseases have been detected in New Jersey such as red blotch of grape, tobacco streak of cranberry as well as shock virus in cranberry and possibly blueberry.

Fruit rots and foliar diseases are well established in New Jersey and represent significant potential losses if not controlled. Most management programs are phenology-based and are augmented by climate-based models. 

Weed pressure is also changing. Resistance to commonly used herbicides is on the rise and the magnitude of the problem has increased with the rapid spread of invasive weed species such as the Palmer amaranth.

Target pests and/or Beneficial Organisms

Diseases: red blotch of grape, tobacco streak of cranberry, shock virus in cranberry. Weeds: Palmer amaranth.

Palmer Amaranth
Palmer amaranth (Amaranthus palmeri) S. Wats.
Joseph M. DiTomaso, University of California - Davis.