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About Jonathan Oliver

Dr. Jonathan Oliver is an Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist in the Department of Plant Pathology at the University of Georgia. He has a 75% research and 25% extension appointment. Dr. Oliver started in his current position at the University of Georgia in mid-2017 as an extension fruit pathologist at the Coastal Plains Experiment Station in Tifton, Georgia. His responsibilities include research and extension activities focused on pathogen biology and disease management in fruit crops grown primarily in the southern part of Georgia, including blueberries, blackberries, citrus, and other emerging fruit crops. Dr. Oliver obtained a BS degree in Plant Pathology and Microbiology & Cell Science from the University of Florida in 2005, and a PhD in Plant Microbe Biology from Cornell University, New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, NY in 2011. In addition, he has also been postdoctoral researcher at Kansas State University and Auburn University. At Auburn, he characterized the interactions between the emerging bacterial pathogen, Xylella fastidiosa, and its blueberry plant hosts. He currently serves as a Plant Pathology Section editor for the Southeast Regional Blueberry Integrated Management Guide.

Upcoming Blueberry Fruit Quality Webinar

Georgia blueberry growers are invited to attend an upcoming Blueberry Fruit Quality Webinar on Thursday, October 13th @ 7PM. Members of the UGA Extension Blueberry Team including Dr. Jonathan Oliver, Dr. Zilfina Rubio Ames, and Dr. Angelos Deltsidis will provide a brief overview of factors affecting blueberry fruit quality, highlight…
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Resource Announcement: UGA Blueberry IPM Academy Presentations

University of Georgia Extension and the Southern Region Small Fruit Consortium hosted the first Blueberry IPM Academy for county and area extension professionals in the southeastern U.S. during fall 2021. This event featured presentations by blueberry extension specialists from the Southeast on numerous topics including: Cultural Practices and Fertility, Harvesting…
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Disease Development Following 2022 Freeze Damage

Following the damage to blueberries in Georgia caused by recent freezes, the threat exists for subsequent damage from fungal pathogens. On tissues already damaged by the freezes, two fungal pathogens of particular concern are Botrytis and Botryosphaeria. BotrytisThe fungus Botrytis cinerea causes Botrytis flower blight and fruit rot on blueberry. Cold-damaged blooms,…
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Mummy Berry Disease Management

While the upcoming forecasted freeze event is understandably foremost on the minds of those connected to the Georgia blueberry industry right now, diseases associated with bloom remain a concern. Many growers in the southern region of Georgia have initiated sprays for mummy berry disease already, but growers who haven’t already…
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Algal Stem Blotch on Blueberry

Current Situation             Wet weather across Georgia’s blueberry production belt during 2021 has led to some usual and some unusual disease issues in recent months. Through mid-September, 2021 rainfall in Alma, Georgia is running about 12 inches above normal, and rainfall in Homerville, Georgia is over 16 inches above normal….
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Resource Announcement: Propagating Disease-Free Blueberry Plants from Softwood Cuttings

A new bulletin on blueberry propagation from UGA Cooperative Extension has recently been published. In this bulletin, authors Haralson, Brannen, and Oliver present a set of best practices for blueberry propagation that will help to minimize losses and improve the quality of plants produced. The bulletin is available through UGA…
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Field evaluation of spray programs for management of anthracnose fruit rot of blueberry

By: Jonathan E. Oliver (UGA Fruit Pathologist), James Jacobs (UGA County Extension Coordinator, Pierce, Charlton, and Brantley Counties), Zack Williams (UGA County Extension Agent, Bacon County), Renee Holland (UGA Area Extension Agent – Commercial Blueberry) Background Anthracnose fruit rot of blueberry is caused by the fungi Colletotrichum acutatum and Colletotrichum…
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Multisite Fungicides for Fungicide Resistance Management in Blueberries

In conventional blueberry production, fungicides are frequently used to manage blueberry diseases. Unfortunately, as a result of repeated fungicide usage, the fungi targeted by these chemicals can develop resistance to specific fungicide modes of action.  This ultimately can make these fungicides less effective for disease management.  To reduce the chances…
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