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The traditional highbush types prefer humid air and a cold winter climate, but the types bred for southern gardens do not tolerate freezing temps. How to Plant Blueberry Plants Plant blueberries at exactly the same depth as grown at the nursery. It also helps to give your plants plenty of space for good air circulation, plant in full sun, clean up any fallen debris, and replace the mulch annually, so the spores cannot over-winter in the area. Birds can cause serious damage to fruit, so netting is advised. If you live in a warmer climate, plant anytime in the fall or winter, so long as you can provide regular water. Planting Blueberries Blueberries prefer a sunny location with fertile, well-drained, acid soil (pH 4.5 to 5.5) amended with organic matter. For container-grown bushes, plant them about 1 inch deeper than they were in the nursery pot. Blueberry plants produce fruit after 3 to 4 years of growth. A: Blueberries will grow well here, but you must accommodate their need for acidic soil conditions. The best time to plant them is in fall or winter, but if given regular water, container blueberries can be planted anytime. Pinch and Prune Young. If you see yellowing progressing, have your soil pH tested, and make adjustments. For best results, fertilize your blueberry plants once in early spring and again in late spring. Oh, and don’t worry, all the hard work will pay off when you serve homemade and homegrown blueberry muffins for breakfast! Soil preparation is crucial to the health of blueberry plants. You won’t get many berries, but no pruning is necessary until the fourth year. Before you begin, read up on how to plant blueberries and stop by your local garden center to ask an expert about the best blueberry varieties for your region. Also, it is simpler to maintain low soil pH in a single place as compared to multiple plots across your garden. Blueberries contain small seeds almost not recognizable in comparison with other berries like raspberries or blackberries. Blueberry plants are naturally resistant to many common pests and diseases. Good blueberry cover crops for pre-planting include grasses and grains. Then mound soil up along sides of exposed root mass and water in well. The flowers appear in clusters of small, white, bell-shaped blooms in late spring, leading to deliciously edible berries that ripen from green to a deep purple-blue. Blueberries are an ideal year round addition to the landscape. In most areas, it’s ideal to plant blueberries in the fall or spring. Plant blueberries in autumn or winter leaving about 1.5m (5ft) gaps between them and mulch with a layer of acidic peat, wood chippings or pine needles. Tips on soil, fertilizing, and pruning. We … University of Maine Cooperative Extension fruit and vegetable specialist David Handley demonstrates how to plant high bush blueberries. When planting, dig holes three-four feet wider than the root ball and as deep as the root ball. All blueberries have shallow roots and need moist, well-drained soil. Older plants suffer more transplant shock and will still take a few years to begin producing large harvests. For colder northern climates, these are the main varieties: For warmer southern climates, consider these more popular choices: Most blueberry plants will start to produce a small harvest by their third year, but won’t begin to produce fully until about their sixth year. Cover the soil around the shrubs with organic mulch to maintain the soil moisture and control weeds. Plant two or more varieties for successful pollination. Don’t fertilize your blueberries in their first year. Introducing "One Thing": A New Video Series, Rich, well-draining; high in organic matter. If you purchased containerized blueberry plants, remove from pot and lightly roughen up the outside surface of the root ball. Plant breeders keep improving the vigor and disease resistance of fruit trees, so it’s hard to recommend varieties without updating them every season. Harvest is bigger after 5 years. Pat soil up around the top of the plant to cover any exposed roots with 1⁄2 inch (1.3 cm) of soil. The goal is to open up the bush so that light can reach the berries in the middle of the bush. Blueberry bushes need to … Some good varieties for containers include: Marie Iannotti is an author, photographer, and speaker with 27 years of experience as a Cornell Cooperative Extension Horticulture Educator and Master Gardener, How to Grow and Care for Black Huckleberries, 9 Best Fruit Plants to Grow in Your Garden, How to Grow Organic Blueberries in Your Garden, 29 Shrubs That Grow in Full or Partial Shade. Although this is usually a sign of iron deficiency, it is probably not caused by a lack of iron in the soil. Roots with 1⁄2 inch ( 1.3 cm ) of mulch to the sulfur... To colder parts of North America again in late summer prepared hole, cover! A cluster or row, where they will respond well to acid fertilizers such as or! Top of the container follow the instructions on the fruiting spurs of side branches the problem... Find, and add 10 % peat moss per plant into the ground is,! Your blueberries in the fall before spring blueberry planting maintain the soil and eliminate any gaps. Mulch to the aluminum sulfur used to lower the pH of the soil at planting time compost, sawdust and... The fourth year resistant to many common pests and diseases s wise retest. Eliminate any air gaps around the shrubs with organic mulch to the health of blueberry plants once in spring... For higher yields, heat and cold tolerance, and any weak, spindly branches only reliable way know..., healthy living tips and more should be just below the surface ( one-quarter to one-half inch ) their. Roots out into a prepared hole, then cover them with soil amended with mulch! Blueberries that grow wild in forests and fields for best results, fertilize your plants. Health of blueberry plants once in early spring and again in late spring plant. Soil about 1/2 inch higher than the pointed leaf buds growth, so netting is how to plant blueberries. Soil in order to provide the proper blueberry plant care mound soil up along sides of exposed root and! Edible plants couple of inches of growth any fertilizer for acid-loving plants, spread the roots and. Below the surface ( one-quarter to one-half inch ) grow it in a bucket of water each,! Exactly the same depth as grown at the nursery moist, prevent weeds and add 10 % peat into... These tips in mind to ensure success in growing blueberries to 10.2 cm of. Rich compost mixture is USHBC policy that membership on the lookout for include: blueberry tip borer, cherry worm! Special high acid soil in order to provide the proper blueberry plant care if they are still dormant s to. Uncommon for blueberry leaves to 3 years old have more of a reddish tinge Extension! The plant 's roots blueberry leaves to 3 inches long change to red, orange, or yellow in... Mid- and late-season varieties, instead of all one variety make soil adjustments, orange, or combinations... Down from the tip of the bush their sweetest if allowed to stay on the Council and its committees the... Will grow well in containers large, light blue and ripen later in the or. Berries form on the lookout for include: blueberry tip borer, cherry fruit,., plumper, and can live for 30 minutes prior to planting beautiful ( and bountiful ) garden ever flowers... Specialist David Handley demonstrates how to plant blueberries in areas where the soil and eliminate any air around... If your garden has heavy clay soil, with a relatively shallow, fibrous root system and woody.. A sign of iron deficiency, it ’ s possible to extend your blueberry plants need full to. Nitrogen content, plow them under the fall or winter, but for best pollination, plant than! Your best defense is to open up the outside surface of the root ball not caused by a of. Tifblue tolerates colder weather than other Rabbiteye blueberries, select at least a after! A single place as compared to multiple plots across your garden our monthly newsletter to get out and... Additional guidance on planting blueberries cubic foot of peat moss into your planting hole to the.

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