Blueberry Blujay: we grow an early ripening variety in the garden

Blueberries can still rarely be found in Russian gardens, but this culture is prophesied for a great future and is even called its competitor to blackcurrant. It is not surprising that this berry has been gaining popularity recently, as specialists have developed a huge number of varieties that have excellent taste and decorative qualities. One of them is Bluejay Blueberry. It is frost-resistant and immune to many diseases to which culture is susceptible. In addition, the Bluejay berries ripen much earlier than the fruits of other popular varieties of blueberries, which is an undoubted advantage of the plant and makes it a welcome guest in the garden.

Blyujey: the story of the creation of the variety

Tall blueberries are a plant that naturally grows in the dense forest thickets and marshes of North America, in particular, it can be found in the eastern United States and eastern Canada. Wild blueberries are also growing in Russian forests, but only species living in America were used to create cultivars.

Until the 20th century, blueberries were not cultivated in private and industrial gardens, but the breeders did a great job and cultivated varieties and hybrids of this beautiful berry began to appear in the middle of the last century.

The Blujay variety is a beautiful and powerful plant that can become a decoration of a site

The North American tall blueberry Bluejay was obtained in 1952 in the USA as a result of cross-pollination of forest forms and several cultivars, including:

  • Pioneer
  • Brooks
  • Stanley
  • Grower.

The production of Bluejay was introduced in 1977, but today it is practically not used as an industrial crop, as farmers have obtained more productive varieties with sweeter and larger berries, which have excellent transportability. However, it is Blueberry Blueberries that are most often recommended for cultivation in private gardens, since the variety has undoubted advantages.

Description

Blueberry bush - fast-growing and powerful - has erect shoots that reach 1.5-1.8 m in height. Medium-sized fruits are collected in long, loose brushes and painted in a light blue tone. The pulp and peel are very dense. Berries are resistant to cracking, ripened fruits can hang for a long time on the bush without crumbling. The taste is pleasant, soft and slightly tart.

Blueberry berry of the Blujay variety ripens almost simultaneously and does not crumble from the bush

Table: characteristics of berries

CriteriaIndicators
Berry sizeDiameter 18–22 mm, weight 2.2 g.
TastePleasant, a little tart.
TransportabilityGood one.
ColoringLight blue with a dense wax coating.

The variety is early ripe. The berries ripen in mid-July, and this happens almost simultaneously, so you can pick them at a time. Fruits are recommended to be consumed fresh, but Blueberry Blueberries are also suitable for preparing drinks, jellies, jams and preserves.

Table: Advantages and Disadvantages of Blujay

prosMinuses
Resistance to major diseases: moniliosis, mummification of fruits, as well as the death of branches.Growing paired with pollinating varieties is required.
Frost resistance (under additional shelter tolerates frosts of 30–32 ° C).The need for abundant watering.
Ornamental bush.Low yield (3.6-6 kg per bush) compared with other modern varieties.
Early ripening.Intensive pruning of an adult bush is required.

Landing Nuances

Planting is one of the most important stages on which the further growth and development of Blueberries Blueberry depends. Since the plant in natural conditions grows in marshy places, it is necessary to create similar conditions in the area that is intended for its cultivation. Planting blueberries is necessary on moist, well-drained, acidic soil in a sunny, sheltered from the winds place. When choosing a site for planting seedlings, keep in mind that although blueberries tolerate partial shade quite well, larger, sweeter berries are obtained in well-lit areas, and the bush becomes more decorative.

You need to plant blueberries in a sunny place, in such conditions it will give you a wonderful harvest of fragrant berries

Blueberries are very demanding on soil acidity, and the crop will not grow well and bear fruit if the plant is planted in the wrong type of soil. Soil pH should be 5.5 or lower. To increase the acidity of the substrate, when planting it is necessary:

  1. Dig a fairly large landing pit 1 m wide and about 60 cm deep.
  2. Pour horse peat, rotted sawdust and coniferous litter into it (in a ratio of 5: 2: 1).
  3. Add soil taken in the coniferous forest.
  4. Mix and moisten all components.

Step-by-step instructions for planting blueberries in the ground

  1. We dig holes at a distance of 2 m from each other (for tall blueberries of the Blujay variety, a lot of space is needed).

    The landing pit for blueberries should be large

  2. Planting pits are covered with acidic substrate from sawdust, horse peat and coniferous litter.
  3. Water and make a small hole in the middle.
  4. Pour peat into the hole without additives.
  5. We establish a sapling.

    Landings must be mulled with peat or sawdust

  6. We fall asleep with a substrate so that the root neck is deepened by 4-6 cm.
  7. We moisten the planting again and mulch the near-stem circle with peat, sawdust or bark of coniferous trees.

    When planting blueberries, it is necessary to moisten the substrate

  8. We shorten all the shoots by a quarter and cut off the fruit buds.

In the first year after planting, the plant should grow a good root system, so all flowers and ovaries are best removed, not allowing the young bush to bear fruit.

Growing in containers

Creating a suitable soil for blueberries is a rather troublesome business, so gardeners have come up with yet another way to grow crops. Planting blueberries in a container is an excellent method of cultivating it, which has its advantages. First, caring for blueberries is simplified. Secondly, this eliminates the possibility of fertile land falling into the tank and, finally, the pot can be moved and the plant placed in the sunniest place. To plant blueberries in a container, you must:

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  1. Pick up a large pot with a diameter and depth of at least 50 cm.
  2. At the bottom, place several pieces of broken brick or clay pot.
  3. Mix horse peat, coniferous litter and sawdust (in a ratio of 5: 1: 2).
  4. Pour an acidic substrate into the container and plant a blueberry seedling in it, deepening the root neck by 4 cm.
  5. Abundantly moisten the substrate and put the pot in a sunny place in the garden.

Growing blueberries in a container is a great way to create suitable conditions for your plant.

Rules for growing blueberries from A to Z

Blueberries are a rather picky plant. Caring for it comes down to regular watering and top dressing. In addition, starting from the third year of the bush, he needs pruning.

Abundant watering and nutrition

Watering is very important for blueberries. The plant must be moistened 2 times a week, pouring 10-15 liters of water under the bush. The irrigation procedure is especially significant in July-August during the fruiting period, since fruit buds begin to form at this time. With drought in this period, you can not only lose the crop of the current year, but also not wait for the delicious berries in the next season. Once every two weeks it is recommended to water the blueberries with acidified water (100 ml of table vinegar per 10 liters of water).

For blueberries do top dressing, acidifying the soil. For an ordinary summer resident, the best option will be the introduction of special fertilizers for coniferous or heather plants. These fertilizers contain all the necessary blueberries mineral substances and trace elements: superphosphate, ammonium sulfate, urea, potassium sulfate.

Fertilizer for conifers is great for feeding blueberries

Fertilizers are applied three times per season: top dressing is performed when the buds open, during the period of fruit formation and during the ripening of the berries. In the spring, immediately after the snow melts, phosphorus and potassium fertilizers are poured along the perimeter of the trunk circle.

Pruning and shelter for the winter

The first pruning is carried out in the third year after planting a seedling in the ground, forming powerful axial shoots and upright skeletal branches. To do this, remove all small shoots (up to 35–40 cm high) of the lower tiers of the bush. Later in the spring, before weak buds, all weak branches are cut off near the root neck, shoots growing inside the bush and at an angle of 45 ° towards the aisle. For 5-6 years, experienced gardeners are advised to do a rejuvenating pruning, cutting out all the old branches and leaving 3-4 new skeletal shoots.

Pruning - a necessary procedure to avoid bush thickening

The Bluejay variety, despite the frost resistance declared by the manufacturers, requires shelter for the winter, which will help protect the plant at extremely low temperatures and a small amount of snow. For this, blueberries are covered with spruce branches, and in snowless winters snow is poured on the bushes, which is the best protection against freezing.

Young shoots of blueberries are very fond of feasting on hares, so it is advisable to provide protection from rodents in the summer cottage, for example, cover the shoots with roofing material or cut plastic bottles.

Table: Common Ailments and Blueberry Pests

Pest / diseaseHow to identifyHow to fight
Khrushchev (chafer)Larvae of the horsetail eat up young leaves and roots of blueberries, due to which the plant dies.At the first signs of a pest, treat with an insecticide, for example, Inta-Vir, Actellik. Prepare the solution according to the instructions.
Codling moth blueberry
  • butterflies lay eggs in the fruit ovary;
  • caterpillars appear that penetrate the berry from the calyx and feed on the flesh, as a result of which the berries dry and fall.
Treat the bushes with Actellik or Fufanon (the solution is done according to the instructions). Spend 2 sprays with an interval of 10 days.
Gray Rot (Botritis)A characteristic gray fluff appears on the berries.Treat the bushes with a systemic fungicide, for example, Fundazol or Topaz.
SeptoriaRusty or grayish brown spots with a yellow border appear on leaf blades.Spray blueberries with 1% Bordeaux liquid (2-3 liters per bush). It will take 2 treatments (before flowering and after harvesting).
Coccomycosis
  • reddish-brown or brown spots appear on leaf blades;
  • at first they are located separately, and subsequently merge;
  • a white coating forms on the underside of the sheet.
Spray with Fundazole (1–2.5 liters per bush), carry out two treatments (before flowering and when the berries are set).
Anthracnose
  • inflorescences acquire a brownish tone, and the fruits of blueberries become soft;
  • infected berries turn bright pink;
  • affected young shoots die off.
Spray the bush and soil under it with a solution of the drug Skor (20 ml per 10 liters of water).

Photo gallery: blueberry diseases and pests

May beetle larvae cause irreparable harm to blueberries, as young plant roots eat up

Caterpillars of the blueberry moth enter the fruit from the calyx and feed on the flesh, as a result of which the berries dry and fall

The gray fluff on the berries indicates infection of the plant with gray rot

When infected with septoria, rusty spots appear on the leaves

Brown spots on leaves are a sign of coccomycosis.

When blueberries are infected with anthracnose, the berries become soft, and young shoots die off

Gardeners' feedback on tall Blueberries of the Blujey variety

I have Blucrop, Blues, Torro, Darrow and Patriot. There are no shoots of substitution on any. The condition of the bushes is normal, branching shoots are 20-30 cm each.

Kinderimp

The best varieties for Moscow Region: 1. River 2. Duke 3. Patriot 4. Toro 5. Blyuzhey

Fatmax

This year, he finally planted the first bushes of blueberries. Varieties of Blue Jay, Legacy, Elliot, Duke, Berkeley, Blue Gold. A total of 93 shrubs. They planted in two ways - in previously prepared pits, bottom laid with agrofibre, and in the trench, the bottom was also sent with agrofibre 50 in 2 layers. Pits are easier and faster to dig, they are more economical. If about 7 buckets of the substrate were covered in a hole, then the trench “gobbled up” twice as much ... From 3-5 cm of seedlings sent in March - by July 60–70 cm bushes with 4–7 branches grew. From the very beginning I thought of planting them in March, but then looking at these unfortunate seedlings I decided to grow them in boxes with ammunition, there are a lot of such .... Watering with plain water from a well, PH 7.2 From the very beginning, he planted sticking them into peat, without any impurities. Little luck with one variety, Blue Jay, namely with agrofibre, which was wrapped in its roots. The fact is that from the very beginning the roots of all the seedlings were wrapped with them, but in all other varieties it rotted in peat for a month, and in this it remained completely untouched (apparently they didn’t calculate, and they took thicker than necessary), and it turned out that the roots did not breathe ... naturally, the bushes did not grow properly. Before disembarking, he completely removed agrofibre and straightened the roots. Within a week after landing on permanent residence, all the bushes sharply went into growth, releasing pink leaves. They planted peat-sawdust-sand 70–20–10 + in the prepared substrate and added Polish fertilizer Agrekol (the same white balls as described above). The acidity of the imported peat was 4.3, the prepared substrate was about 3.8. Judging from the fact that my water has PH 7.2, I think sooner or later I will have to acidify, but I think so far not soon. I haven’t put a drop yet, for lack of time, but in the coming days I’ll organize everything.

Dmitry86

Video: features of growing blueberries

Despite the fact that planting tall blueberries is very troublesome, the plant has a lot of advantages, so it should be planted in the garden. The Blujej variety has large berries with excellent taste. In addition, the bush looks decorative and can become a real decoration of the site: in spring, blueberries are covered with tassels of creamy white inflorescences exuding a pleasant aroma, in the summer it is strewn with bright blue berries, and in autumn the leaves acquire a magnificent red, yellow and burgundy color.

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