Native to the northern tier of the United States and Canada, blueberries (Vaccinium spp.) have been extensively hybridized since the 1980s. Scientists have developed varieties suitable from growing in the southern U.S., including Georgia, known as "southern highbush" blueberries. These cultivars require fewer chilling hours (temperatures below freezing) than northern highbush varieties, and will reliably produce a crop in warmer climates. The rabbiteye blueberry, although it bears fruit that is inferior to the highbush varieties, also requires fewer chilling hours and can be successfully grown in Georgia. Rabbiteye'blueberries are grown primarily for processing into baked goods and not for fresh eating.
This blueberry variety V. corymbosum 'Sharpblue' has an extra-long harvest period. It flowers early in spring and the blossoms may be susceptible to late spring frosts. 'Sharpblue' may flower several times during growing season, extending the harvest. Larger plantings are susceptible to fungal leaf spot diseases, although a small planting of a few specimens does not show this same susceptibility.
An early bearer, 'Emerald' matures early and continues producing fruit throughout most of the season. 'Emerald' produces high yields of large, high-quality berries. It grows into a vigorous upright bush that is widely planted in warmer weather areas.
One of the earliest bearing varieties, 'Jewel' is a vigorous plant of moderate size and a spreading habit. The berries are firm, of excellent quality and are medium to large in size. 'Jewel' is susceptible to root rot.