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Blueberries in SFG

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Blueberries in SFG

Post  MasonGarden on 4/25/2010, 7:55 pm

Hello All! Does anyone have experience with planting blueberries in a SFG? If so, how many can you plant in a square foot? Should they have their own box? How deep? There is no mention of blueberries in the book, but my family loves them, and we'd love to grow our own if possible!

Thanks for the advice,
Renee
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Re: Blueberries in SFG

Post  Josh on 4/25/2010, 9:45 pm

I haven't grown any before, but I love blueberries and so I planted some dwarf ones and gave them their own SFGs. Here is a link to another post about blueberries in your SFG maybe you will find some help there.
Post about Blueberries
Mine are doing good so far, they get 3 feet tall and 2 feet wide, I planted them 2 in a 2 x 4 SFG and have 6 plants all together.
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Re: Blueberries in SFG

Post  MasonGarden on 4/25/2010, 11:12 pm

Thanks, Josh! I appreciate the tips and will look to add blueberries to our garden. I see you have inherited your Mom's green thumbs (I recognize her SFG in the background)! You both have great gardens!

Renee
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Re: Blueberries in SFG

Post  new2this on 4/26/2010, 7:52 am

I just planted 3 blueberry bushes; each in their own container. That way I could manipulate the soil to the acidic conditions they need. But like Josh has done, planting them in their own box would work fine, too. They need pine mulch (pine not other hardwood types) and peat (which you have!) and do not add a manure compost, but I guess they prefer a humus-based compost. If you can find a bag of soil for acid loving plants (an azalea soil) that'd be perfect.

You NEED protection from the birds! My little B-bushes are small and only just starting to produce flowers and those darn birds are already attacking them! So, I do wish I'd gone ahead and made their own bed, that way adding a netting-cover would've been easy, now I'm not sure how I'm going to do this, but they DEFINITELY need protection from the birds.

GOod luck.

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RE: Blueberries in SFG

Post  trukrebew on 4/26/2010, 8:49 am

I have 2 bushes going into their 2nd year, but in their own non-SFG along the house. I was told by the very helpful octogenarian who sold them to me to use cheese cloth over the bushes. This is supposed to keep the birds off but still let light through. I was going to wait until the berries started to come in and then do it thinking that the birds would leave the flower buds alone for now.

BUT, I also heard that in their 2nd year, the flowers should be picked off to encourage new growth for next year. I don't want to do that! My little sons are looking forward to any berries we get this year. I would hate to skip out on one season even if it means a bigger harvest next year.

Supposedly, they reach full maturation in 10-12 years and at that point you will get up to 10 pounds of berries per bush! That sounds amazing if true! By then my boys will be growing teenagers and will probably be eating that much in one sitting!
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Re: Blueberries in SFG

Post  MasonGarden on 4/26/2010, 9:10 am

Many thanks for sharing your success stories and warnings about protection from the birds. I am excited about the possibility of growing our own, and am going to try separate containers for 2-3 plants. I also found a Fall Creek website for Blueberries: http://www.fallcreeknursery.com/Gardener/StartingRightwithBlueberries.htm. On the site they also provide tips for growing blueberries, including not letting them bloom the first year, to produce better crops in future years. I don't know if I can be that patient!

Renee
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Blueberries in SFG

Post  trukrebew on 4/26/2010, 9:19 pm

Thanks for the link to that simple cheat sheet, MasonGarden. It's added to my bookmarks.
Now I'm wondering exactly how old my bushes are this year. I got them last year when they had fruit on them, but they were pretty tall. So, I guess I missed the 1st year deflowering. I wonder if it would be bad to remove all of the flower buds this year instead? Hmmm......
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