top of page
  • Mike Manning

Busy Bees, Bountiful Berries: Why Blueberries Love Buzzing By

Blueberries -

those tiny bursts of sweet and tart perfection - wouldn't exist without the tireless work of bees. These fuzzy pollinators play a critical role in blueberry farms, ensuring a fruitful harvest for both the farmer and our taste buds.

Where Do Blueberries Come From?

The answer is the United States, apparently, followed by Canada, Mexico, Chile, and Peru.

Which states produce the most blueberries?

Top 10 Blueberry Producing States:

  1. Washington - 96 Million lbs

  2. Georgia - 92 Million lbs

  3. Michigan - 92 Million lbs

  4. Oregon - 86 Million lbs

  5. New Jersey - 56 Million lbs

  6. California 53 Million lbs

  7. North Carolina - 49 Million lbs

  8. Florida - 16 Million lbs

  9. Mississippi - 9 Million lbs

  10. Indiana - 2 Million lbs

Here's how bees transform blueberry blossoms into juicy delights:

The Power of Pollination: Blueberry flowers, like many plants, need a little help getting things started. They have male parts (stamens) that produce pollen and female parts (pistils) that become the fruit. Bees, flitting from flower to flower, pick up pollen on their furry bodies. As they continue their search for nectar, some of this pollen brushes against the pistils of other blueberry flowers. This transfer of pollen is called pollination, and it's the magic trick that sets the stage for berry development.

Sticky Situation: Blueberry pollen is a bit on the heavy and sticky side. Wind, not the most reliable pollinator, isn't very effective at spreading it around. Bees, on the other hand, are perfectly suited for the task. Their fuzzy bodies become dusted with pollen, ensuring they carry it from flower to flower, maximizing pollination efficiency.

Bee Buddies: Honeybees and Beyond: While honeybees are often the first to come to mind, many bee species contribute to blueberry pollination. Bumblebees, with their robust build and ability to "buzz pollinate" (vibrating flowers to release more pollen), are particularly effective. In fact, studies show that a diverse bee population can lead to larger, tastier blueberries and even earlier harvests!

A Win-Win Partnership: The relationship between bees and blueberry farms is a beautiful example of symbiosis. Bees get a delicious meal of nectar from the blueberry flowers, and the farm benefits from a bountiful crop. It's a reminder of the interconnectedness of nature and the vital role pollinators play in our food system.

Supporting the Buzz: As bee populations face challenges, blueberry farmers are implementing strategies to create bee-friendly habitats. Planting native flowers around fields provides additional food sources, and some farms even utilize special bee houses to encourage solitary bee populations.

So next time you pop a handful of blueberries, take a moment to appreciate the busy bees that made them possible. By supporting healthy bee populations, we ensure a future filled with these delicious and nutritious treats!

Apiaries and Beekeepers: The Unsung Heroes of Fruit Crops


not always broadcast when we talk about pollination but beekeepers and apiaries have stepped in to help out berry farms as well as many other crops by supplying their bees where wild bee populations have been decimated by urban and suburban expansion, overuse of harmful pesticides, and invasive species.

When bees have to be transported hundreds or even thousands of miles, it’s important to keep them as stress-free as possible. Unnecessary jarring and jostling of bee hives can stress the pollinators, the queen, the workers, the office manager, and the rest of the staff. When this happens the hive doesn’t run like clockwork and the pollination efforts will not be as effective as possible.

All-Terrain Forklifts for Beekeepers and Blueberry Farmers

Proper equipment like off-road forklifts designed for beekeepers and blueberry farmers, alike, is priceless when it comes to properly handling bees and fragile crops. Use these all-terrain forklifts to carry beehives from the trucks to the crops and carry them back. Then use the same versatile forklift to carry your bountiful bushels of blueberries to your trucks to ship them across the world.

8 views0 comments


bottom of page