IRDA monitored water extraction by blueberry farms in the Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean region between 2015 and 2018. Our measurements indicate that, under current production conditions, lowbush blueberry crops have relatively low water requirements. Furthermore, measured yields were quite variable, even within a single field, and could be forecast with the monitoring tools developed here. The water extraction measurements also suggest that higher yields could be attained in the monitored blueberry fields. Currently, water extraction is generally 50% below the potential evapotranspiration demand. As part of this project, the soil water status at a chosen blueberry farm will be monitored at 40 spots over the course of the production year. We will seek to identify the relationship between water extraction, physicochemical and environmental factors, and yield levels that could help explain yield variability.
From 2019 to 2020
Optimal water management
Improved water extraction will help boost blueberry crop yields.
Ferme forestière Paul Grenon et fils | Ministère de l'Agriculture, des Pêcheries et de l'Alimentation
This project aims to examine whether improving soil health can help check strawberry decline.
Researcher: Christine Landry
Exclusion nets have proven to be effective against nearly all of these insect pests, which means that it’s possible to develop apple growing practices in Québec that are not only neonicotinoid free, but also devoid of all pesticides (including acaricides, given that mite problems are a consequence of broad-spectrum insecticide use). Although the net exclusion microsystem studied in Québec since 2012 has demonstrated its effectiveness in controlling insect pests, some issues remain to be studied before it can be unreservedly recommended. Among these are the handling times for the nets, i.e., installation/removal and opening/closing, and the system’s profitability and durability over the long haul for various cultivars.
Researcher: Gérald Chouinard