Vegetables and Fruit forum: Considering Blueberrys

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Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Heucheras Hellebores Container Gardener
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ge1836
Aug 4, 2014 11:29 AM CST
I am new to edibles interplanted with perennials but was considering BlueBerry bushes.
I have no clue where to buy them or what to buy.
I really dont have room for the big bush type.
Is there a manageable size?
I was told to buy two different varieties for good pollination.
Any help will be appreciated.
Name: Caroline Scott
Calgary (Zone 4a)
Charter ATP Member Region: Canadian Bulbs Winter Sowing Enjoys or suffers cold winters Lilies
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CarolineScott
Aug 5, 2014 8:31 AM CST
I think they need acidic soil so may not work in a perennial bed?
There are many varieties of blueberries.
Best consult nurseries near you?
All the best....I am thinking of growing them also....maybe next year.
Name: Don Shirer
Westbrook, CT (Zone 6a)
Seed Starter
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DonShirer
Aug 5, 2014 9:01 AM CST
Lowbush blueberries. You will need to protect them from birds and other critters (chipmunks climb up my bushes) or you won't get any fruit. Plant them far enough apart that you can cover with netting (and close it up underneath!).
Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Heucheras Hellebores Container Gardener
Birds Region: New York Irises Garden Ideas: Master Level Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lilies
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ge1836
Aug 5, 2014 9:32 AM CST
So thankful for the tips.
I may just give up on the idea. Too old and lame to fight the kritters.

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
twitcher
Aug 29, 2014 11:19 AM CST
I've been trialing various blueberry varieties for about 15 years now, so let me offer a few tips.

1) Acid soil appears to be necessary. I get my best results from mixing peat and pine bark mulch (peat preferred) in the soil with the plants for the initial planting. In fact, I've grown blueberries in a pure peat/sand mix. For all of my plants, I add an inch of peat to the top of the ground each spring to help keep the soil acid.

2) To limit disease, be sure to pick up and remove all fruits that may drop to the ground. Do this at least once a week. This also limits ants colonizing under your plants. If that happens, they can damage the fruit.

3) Watch the watering. Blueberries will tolerate some drying, but can rapidly die if they get too dry. They don't need to stay wet, but weekly watering them here really helps keep them healthy. My plants are in full sun.

4) Duke is may favorite variety.

5) Pick several varieties that span the summer fruiting season. You can get early, mid and late fruiting varieties and pick berries all summer.

6) Plan for a fight against the birds. If you are only going to have a few plants scattered in your garden, then you will likely not get much fruit from them unless you net them. Especially if you want to be able to harvest fruits at full ripeness. Robins are horrible pests of blueberry growers.
Name: Jo Ann Gentle
Pittsford NY (Zone 6a)
Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Cat Lover Heucheras Hellebores Container Gardener
Birds Region: New York Irises Garden Ideas: Master Level Avid Green Pages Reviewer Lilies
Image
ge1836
Aug 29, 2014 11:33 AM CST
Thanks for the tips.Twitcher after many remarks about fighting the birds I realize this projects is beyond my ancient abilities and I have discarded the idea

Charter ATP Member I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
twitcher
Aug 29, 2014 1:01 PM CST
Jo Ann, I made a cage out of 1/2" PVC pipe and covered the cage using bird net held in place with garden clips. Not hard to do and not very expensive. It's reusable from season to season. I didn't mention that because the theme was blending the bb's with other gardening. Blueberries are well worth the effort.

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