Blueberry cross-fertilization

Is it necessary?
I finally -- after waiting literally decades! -- got a pair of blueberry bushes that had been adapted to need much less winter chill, so can be grown in So. Calif coastal.
The "O'Neal" bush is loaded with big fat delicious blueberries
Its companion, "Sunshine", is also loaded -- but with tiny, miserable- looking berries that are drying up by the day. I am returning it to the nursery.
Questions:
1. Is "cross-fertilization" necesssary? Some of the sites I visited said yes; others said (AFAIK) that O'Neal was self-pollinating but would be better with cross.
2. If so, why can't it be between same varieties, rather than across varieties?
I am dizzy trying to evaluate the many varieties listed on the sites I visited. My #1,2,3, and so on requirement is FLAVOR. Prefer more tangy than mild.
Your input appreciated -- keeping in mind this is So. Calif. Coastal.
TIA
HB
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On Sat, 4 Jun 2011 17:23:46 -0700 (PDT), Higgs Boson

It's called cross-pollenation. Although blueberries are self-fertile, you will get larger berries and more of them if you have two different cultivars to cross pollinate. And some varieties do need a separate pollenator (rabbit eye). There are early, mid-season, and late cultivars... make sure the pollenators you choose flower at the same time. I suggest buying your plants from a reliable local nursery that grows their own. http://gardening.about.com/od/berries/a/Blueberries.htm
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In message

One means used by plants to avoid self-fertilisation is self-incompatibility alleles, where the population contains lots of different alleles at the locus, and an individual can't be fertilised by pollen from a plant (such as itself) with the same allele.
In the case of vegetatively propagated varieties of such plants all individuals of the variety have the same self-incompatibility allele, and you need a different variety for fertilisation.

--
Stewart Robert Hinsley

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wrote:

HB
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