The Q&A Archives: Japanese Blueberry Tree

Question: We are thinking about planting Japanese blueberry trees in our front yard. However, we can not find any images showing the flowers of this tree. Also, do you know for how long this tree flowers.

On another tree: we are also looking at the evergreen pear (pyrus kawakamii) and can't seem to get a consensus - does this tree grow up to be full and round or is it a gangly, scraggly tree for a large part of its life?

Answer: Japanese Blueberry Tree is Elaeocarpus decipiens. The tree grows 30'-60' tal and 20'-30' wide, with a densely branched upright habit. The new leaves are rusty and hairy, turning smooth and bright green as they mature. The oldest leaves eventually drop, turning red before they fall. Japanese Blueberry Tree blooms in summer, producing tiny, scented white flowers in 3" long clusters. These are followed by blue-black fruits that look like small olives. The tree produces a single trunk and a full canopy. Provide rich, well-drained soil and full sunshine. I've done an exhaustive search and cannot direct you to a picture of the tree.

Pyrus kawakamii grows 15'-30' and wide, with drooping branchlets. Left on its own it becomes a broad, sprawling shrub. You can train it as a tree by staking one or more stems upright (to serve as a single or multi-trunk) and pruning away side growth for the first few years. An established, well-shaped tree will need little additional pruning.

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