Last year we had an amazing crop of blueberries, we had a small but steady supply almost daily for weeks over the summer.
This year, the bush just hasn't had the abundance of flowers and the few juvenile blueberries look very lacklustre. I thought that maybe we just got very lucky last year.
This morning I was doing an inspection of the jostaberry when I just happened to glance a the blueberry and then it became very clear what the problem was.
Scale insects. All the stems were covered in them.
There are various remedies I've found looking on the Internet from biological controls to wiping with meths!
I spent a good half hour popping scraping them off with my finger nail. It was a bit like popping bubble wrap only less satisfying and a bit more icky.
I had them on my lemon tree, which almost killed it off. I knocked them all off and have made sure to keep it well fed and it is bouncing back.
My RHS Gardening Encyclopedia recommends spaying with plant oil in winter which is what I'll do.
So, no bumper crop this year, we'll be lucky to get a handful, but now I know to keep an eye out in case they come back and for the future.