Climate Impacts on Maine Wild Blueberry Farms: Interview with David Yarborough, PhD

To better understand the impacts of climate change on blueberry farms, we asked UMaine Cooperative Extension’s David Yarborough* to reflect on his 40 years of experience advising Maine growers.

David has noticed changes in weather patterns during his career, including “both an earlier spring and a later fall” leading to a longer growing season, “more erratic frosts and freezes,” and the drought-inducing combination of “higher summer temperatures and less summer precipitation.” David suggests that emerging management issues related to these changes include the need for irrigation in crop fields, and new diseases and insect pests that can impact blueberry yields. Additionally, in relation to human health he notes that “ticks have also spread into wild blueberry fields and diseases they vector such as Lyme can cause serious diseases.” You can read David’s full interview at:

This is part two in a series of Specialist Interviews the Maine Climate and Agriculture Network (MECAN) is collecting in order to share perspectives on climate change from different agricultural sectors in Maine. You can find out more about MECAN on our website,