Blueberry Bush Cross-Pollination Chart

Blueberry bushes rely on bees to pollinate their flowers and set fruit. Without pollination, some blueberries like northern highbush can still produce berries, but they will be underdeveloped and slow to ripen. Another factor that affects crop quality is cross-pollination. Cross-pollination is when pollen from one variety is transferred to the female part of a different variety within the same species. Rabbiteye and lowbush blueberries both require cross-pollination to produce berries. So you need to plant at least two different rabbiteye bushes for them to fruit. Lowbush types can be pollinated by another lowbush or a highbush cultivar. 

Unlike rabbiteye and lowbush types, northern and southern highbush blueberry plants are usually self-fertile, and only one plant is needed to produce berries. However, even these types will produce more and larger berries with cross-pollination. We recommend planting at least three different varieties within the same species to encourage cross-pollination. The trick is to select varieties that bloom around the same time. Below you can find a chart of the bloom times and the most compatible cross-pollination partners for each variety. For example, good pollination partners for Jersey include Reka Highbush, Blue Gold, Duke Highbush, and Bluecrop. Feel free to use the chart to help you select the most compatible blueberry bushes.


*Note that weather patterns and climate affect bloom times of blueberry bushes. Thus, two blueberry cultivars that are known cross-pollination partners may not bloom at the same time in your region and would be unable to cross-pollinate. The best way to ensure effective cross-pollination is to plant three or more different cross-pollinators in the same area.


 Author Jessica Mercer - Published 12-07-2023