Blueberry Plants


GROWING BLUEBERRY PLANTS


Buy your blueberry bushes, and plant them in the ground, in raised beds, or containers in the spring through the fall, and a couple of years your plants will provide you will an abundance of berries to enjoy yourself, or share with family and friends.

 

There are many varieties of blueberry plants, but the main types are wild, lowbush, highbush, rabbiteye, and hybrids. Many varieties of blueberry plants have pretty, little umbel-shaped white flower clusters in the spring, and berries and lush green foliage in the summertime. The green foliage turns a beautiful crimson red in the fall. Plants over 4 years in age will produce large harvests if watered well, in a bright sunny location, and soil conditions are kept on the acidic side. The healthy delicious blueberries you pick fresh from your plants in July will provide an abundance of round berries for eating and for use in many recipes.


types of blueberry plants


Blueberry plants can also be used as ornamental garden plants. If you hate the look of fences chopping up the landscape around your neighborhood, you might opt for a living blueberry fence, by planting the bushes closer together in long rows or ornamental clusters. An excellent choice is the highbush blueberry plants, as they have an upright habit and grow to a height of 6 feet and about fifty six feet wide, which makes them easy to maintain, prune and crop. When ordering online please check your planting zones which will tell you which varieties grow the best in your garden climate zone.

Blueberry
Image via Wikipedia

 

Blueberry plants are easy to grow, but do require that they be planted in acidic soil with a pH of 4.5-5.0 use a soil meter for this purpose. They also require well-draining, loamy soil, with acidic mulch compost,(pine park, oak leaves, fir sawdust), special fertilizer for acidic soil conditions, and a bright spot with at least a half day of full sun. You can grow plants in shady areas, but the berries will be smaller, and berry harvest will also be affected. Blueberry  plants grow best with shallow rooting, so dig your holes 2 feet by 2 feet and cover only to the depth of where your plant was in the container, and at least 5 feet apart. Once your plants are established keep the weeds pulled soil moist, and try and keep the birds away from your prize blueberry plants.

Blueberry plants once established are extremely productive; when you notice the new blooms and flowers you should plan for most if not all the flowers turning into berries as long as there they are adequately pollinated. Pollination is also conducted by a number of other insects, so it is important to NEVER use insecticides during bloom. Many varieties are self-pollinating, so if space is limited you can plant only 1 bush and still have fruit. Early varieties begin bearing in June, but with a little planning, you can choose different varieties that stagger the harvesting times, and you may have fresh blueberries all summer.

 

Some pruning is required you can read more on this post on how to prune your blueberry bushes.


 

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Natural Bird Feeders

Blueberry Bushes 

Natures Bird Feeders

 

Attracting Birds To Your Garden

Many people want to attract birds to their garden. One of the simplest ways to do this is to create a garden filled with plants that birds love. You have read all the health benefits of blueberries such as anti aging, increased memory, helping with UTI's, and heart health. Why not share the great health benefit with your feathered friends.

Blueberry bushes and other berry bushes are the perfect addition to a garden to attract birds. Once planted the blueberry bushes take very minimal care. You are guaranteed a garden full of birds if you plant blueberry bushes of different varieties that provide staggered fruit ripening. Remember to add pine needles, or pine bark mulch around your blueberry plants. This helps balance the pH of your soil, keep the blueberry roots moist, and will provide a bug rich environment for your garden bird population. 

 


There are many varieties of plants, but four main types of blueberry bushes. You have choices between highbush, lowbush, rabbiteye, and hybid bushes. Planting blueberry plants is a simple procedure, as long as the soil is prepared properly. Blueberry plants grow easily in containers, and will also provide buckets of fruit for your own dining table as well.


Spring is the time to buy blueberry bushes, and plant them. The plants can also be planted in the fall before ice settles on the ground. Do some research to discover other native plants that thrive in your own planting zone. Native birds like natural sanctuaries where there is a good food supply, appropriate nesting and sheltered protection.


Include in your garden design and assorted variety of berry and seed producing plants, shrubs, and trees. You want to stagger you garden plantings to include high plants, midlevel, and ground level plantings for different bird feeding preferences. Bushes and trees will not only provide food for birds, but will also provide shelter, and nest building materials. Many gardeners find that trees such as mountain ash, cherry, colorful dogwoods, and Washington hawthorn bring a great assortment of birds to the garden.  Now closer to the ground plant some flowers, and other low vegetation. Birds love flower seeds, so why not plant some sunflower, nasturtium, geraniums, hollyhock, and other such seed producing flowers.

Birds are very attracted to the sweet ripe, plump berries, and once you blueberry bushes are established you will be hard pressed not to have a garden full of birds if that is your goal. Adding a water feature is also an additional feature that will attract birds to your backyard. You might consider adding a birdbath, or a pond.
Birds make a wonderful addition to any garden. Their colorful presence and unique personality traits are a joy to observe, garden birds also eat insects and keep your backyard eco system healthy.


The beauty of blueberry plants is that they turn a beautiful crimson in the fall adding even more color to your garden. Plant some blueberry bushes, seeded flowers. Flowering trees, add a water feature, and you will find you garden filled with a variety of birds, butterflies, and other native animals.

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Best blueberry planting tips.

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The Best PH Soil Meters For Planting Blueberry Bushes
Get a soil meter for soil testing.

 

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The Best PH Soil Meters For Planting Blueberry Bushes

The Best PH Soil Meters

For Planting Blueberry Bushes

blueberry soil ph

Find ph Soil Testers

If you want to plant blueberry bushes in your garden, then you will need to test the soil for proper pH balance. Blueberries require acidic soil condition, if your soil conditions are not in the proper pH range you may find that your blueberry plants won't die, but they will not produce fruit or bush out.

Click here to read the post on how to plant blueberrie bushes and the correct soil conditions needed top produce the best, juiciest, and sweetest blueberries.

You can also find at this link= pH soil meters, soil pH kits, needed to achieve proper soil pH balances for your blueberry bushes, and blueberry seeds.

To get healthy blueberry bushes, you need to buy blueberry bushes that will survive your your climate zone.

Soil PH And Its Effect On Your Garden

by Francis Kilkelly

As you may have observed from your gardening experiences plants can be fussy things. The right location, amount of sunlight and 101 other factors influence your plant's growing ability. One factor which is very beneficial in understanding before putting that new plant into the earth is soil pH.

What is Soil pH?

Let's get all scientific for a moment and learn what pH is. In chemistry pH is a measure of how acidic or alkaline a solution is. Okay chemistry lesson over. Basically soil pH is a measure of how acidic or alkaline your soil is. Soil pH is measured on a scale of 1 to 14. If your soil has a pH value of less than 7 then you have acidic soil. On the other hand if your soil has a pH value of greater than 7 then you have alkaline soil. A pH value of 7 is neutral, meaning you have neither acidic or alkaline soil.

The Effect of Soil pH on Plants

Knowing the pH value of your soil before planting is very important as it has a direct influence on the health of the plant. Each plant has its own recommended soil pH value range. The reason for this is that soil pH effects the availability of nutrients within the soil and plants have different nutrient needs. For example the nutrient nitrogen, a very important plant nutrient, is readily available in soil when the pH value is above 5.5. Similarily the nutrient phosphorous is available when the pH value is between 6 and 7. If a plant is placed into the wrong kind of soil it will be lacking in nutrients that it needs which will promote disease. In general the best pH value range for soil is approximately 6 or 7 as this is the range in which most nutrients can be readily available.

Finding Out pH of Soil

Finding out the pH of soil is usually a trivial matter and the kits to do so should be available at most good garden centres. Usually a pH testing kit will include a small container / test tube, testing solution and a color chart. A sample of soil is taken from your garden, placed into the container / test tube and a few drops of testing solution are added. The container is then shaken and left for a certain period of time. The color of the sample in the container is then compared against the color chart to determine the pH value of the soil. Note that if you want to determine the soil pH of an large area it may be a good idea to take soil samples from many different locations, combine the samples and then perform the test on the combined sample.

A quick way to find out the pH of an area is to look to see if there are any house hydrangeas (Hydrangea macrophylla) already growing in the area. If so observe the color of its flowers. A soil pH of 6 or below will produce blue flowers while a soil pH of 6.8 or higher will produce pink flowers.

How to Make Soil More Alkaline (Increase pH)

If your soil is acidic or slightly acidic you can take steps to make it more alkaline to accommodate the plants you want to put there. You can make your soil more alkaline (increase its pH value) by adding a form of lime. Lime is a compound of calcium or calcium and magnesium. It is usually applied in the form of ground agricultural limestone, burnt lime or hydrated lime (slaked lime). The smaller the limestone particles then the quicker your soil will become more alkaline. For this reason hydrated lime will offer the quickest performance because it is slightly soluble in water so it can permeate the soil quicker and reduce acidity faster.

Increasing the pH of your soil is not an overnight process and it is best to allow 2-3 months to allow the lime to neutralize the acidity of the soil acidity.

How to Make Soil More Acidic (Decrease pH)

Some ornamental plants and fruit plants like blueberries require an acidic soil. To make your soil more acidic (decrease its pH value) you can use either aluminium sulphate or sulphur. Aluminium sulphate is the quickest acting as it will increase the acidity as soon as it dissolves into the soil. The downsides are though that its effects can be short term and it is possible to over-apply it.

The more recommended but slower way to increase your soil pH is to use sulphur. Sulphur converts to sulphuric acid with the help of bacteria in the soil but this takes time depending on factors like the presence of bacteria, texture of the soil and moisture levels. This could take months if conditions are not ideal.

Conclusion

Remember to always take into account soil pH when deciding what to plant in your soil. If you do not know what the pH of your soil is then test your soil and if needs be take steps mentioned earlier to change the pH value over time. Best of luck!

About the Author

Francis Kilkelly runs a great gardening community at http://www.gardenstew.com/ containing forums and gardening blogs ( http://www.gardenstew.com/blogs.php ). Original Article Location: http://www.gardenstew.com/blog/e3-9-soil-ph-and-its-effect-on-your-garden.html

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