Here is the newest issue of Massachusetts Berry Notes from the UMass Extension Fruit Team.

Massachusetts IPM Berry Blast

Sept. 6, 2016

 Drought UPDATE
MA drought map 8-30
As of August 30th, a larger area of the state has crossed over into the 'Extreme Drought' classification (area highlighted in red; over 22%), with the total area classified in some level of drought status remaining steady at just over 91%.  Most of Berkshire County is classified as 'Abnormally Dry' but not officially in drought.

See below for more information about drought classifications and emergency declarations that allow growers in designated counties to gain access to assistance through USDA-Farm Service Agency (FSA).  Contact your local FSA office as soon as possible if you think you may be eligible for assistance due to drought losses.  - S. Schloemann, UMass Extension Fruit Team

USDA Drought Disaster Designates 4 Massachusetts Counties & FSA Emergency Loan Program
Richard LeBlanc, MDAR
On August 29 and September 2, 2016 - The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) declared certain counties in New Hampshire as primary natural disaster areas due to losses caused by a recent drought.  As a result of the New Hampshire declaration, four contiguous Massachusetts counties are automatically designated as drought disaster areas including:  Essex, Franklin, Middlesex and Worcester counties.  A USDA declaration makes available emergency loans through the Farm Service Agency (FSA) to eligible producers to help recover from crop losses.  Link to the USDA press releases: and
Farm operators in the above designated counties are encouraged to contact their local USDA FSA county office.  The following link to the FSA home page includes a tab with county office contact information:  A link to the Emergency Loan Program describes the program in detail with information on what a producer should bring to a conversation with FSA loan staff:  (Source: Farm & Market Report, 9-6-16)

Archived IPM Berry Blasts are available at the UMass Extension Fruitadvisor website.
Where brand names for chemicals are used, it is for the reader's information.  No endorsement is implied, nor is discrimination intended against products with similar ingredients.  Please consult pesticide product labels for rates, application instructions and safety precautions.  The label is the law.  Users of these products assume all associated risks.
We thank Nourse Farms for their underwriting of this newsletter which allows us to keep subscription rates low.
This work was supported in part by funding provided by USDA-NIFA Extension Implementation Program, Award No. 2014-70006-22579

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