Blueberry Bushes: Planting and Care
The landscape value of high-bush blueberries is excellent. Attractive while in flower and fruit, they have brilliant autumn foliage.
These attractive shrubs have a high landscape value because of their rugged twiggy form and foliage that becomes orange, scarlet, and red in autumn. They need acid soil (PH 4.5-5.5) with high content of organic material to maintain moisture. The home gardener can best supply this necessary humus by adding quantities of peat moss (at least one 10 quart pail or more per plant) mixed thoroughly with the soil when planting. Leaf mold, sawdust (well rotted), or compost are good mulching materials. Set the shrubs from 3 to 5 feet apart, either as a hedge or as a landscape group.
Sand, organic or peat soils, loose in texture are preferred. They can be grown on acid clay high in organic matter. Mixing quantities of peat with clay in a hole the size of a bushel, and planting the plant with this mixture may accomplish this.
Constant but moderate moisture supply throughout the growing season is necessary. Over watering for long periods is not good.
To acidify sandy soils, apply one pound of sulfur per 100 square feet for each full point the soil registers above 5.5. To acidify medium loams, apply 1.5 to 2.5 lbs. of sulfur per 100 square feet for every point above 5.5.
The blueberry is very shallow rooted. Cultivation should be shallow. The soil should be cultivated with a hoe to keep down weeds. Blueberry plants are easy to grow. When watering, make sure you water thoroughly twice a week during dry conditions.
Never use fertilizers in the planting hole. A complete balanced fertilizer such as liquid Azalea and Rhododendron plant food can usually be purchased through you plant dealer and used per instruction on the label several times during the growing season starting in May and up to August 1st.
Blueberries are very hardy. For best quality bushes, care must be given. You have purchased a live and healthy plant and with common sense along with a little extra effort the first year you will see the results pay off the next with beautiful spring flowering shrubs and covered with a delicious fruit during the summer and fall and winter color that stands out as a beautiful ornamental accent plant.
Pruning is not necessary the first and possibly the second year after planting. After that subsequent pruning is chiefly for the purpose of:
1. Removing dead or broken branches.
2. Removing thin, bushy wood that accumulates near the base in mature bushes.
3. Removing old stems of parts of stems, which have lost their vigor and no longer produce new shoots.
4. To thin and shape the bush by removal of a few of the older canes.
Our plants are self-pollinating and do not need cross-pollination. Therefore, you can just plant one variety or several.
Insect control should not be too necessary for home garden planting. Some home gardeners spray with Malathion after blossoms fall and continue this about every few weeks until harvest.
Most home gardeners enjoy the small challenge of trying a few plants. It is recommended that these blueberry plants be treated under the same conditions as you would grow a Rhododendron, Azalea or any acid loving plant. The only difference is that blueberry plants do not require shade.
Our plants are top quality. They have been grown to give you a beautiful landscape plant and to have fruit for your enjoyment.
Click the video to the right for detailed instructions on the best way to plant your new bushes. This step-by-step tutorial will help you get the most out of your investment.