Mummy Berry Alert for Southeastern NC
19 March 2014 — The mummy berry fungus is emerging this week in blueberry fields in the coastal plain of North Carolina. Control measures should be applied now in fields that have a history of this disease. This photo was taken earlier today, and shows the fungus emerging from old infected fruit hidden in leaf litter underneath bushes at the NCSU Horticultural Crops Research Station in Castle Hayne. Spores (ascospores) released from these cup mushrooms will infect emerging blueberry leaf and flower shoots, blighting them and releasing secondary spores (conidia) that will infect fruit during bloom.
This disease-causing fungus develops two to three weeks later in Western NC, when blueberry leaves and flowers begin to emerge in that part of the state in early April. See more images and information on this disease.