Secrets of successful planting blueberries: planting principles, care for planted bushes
Blueberries are a healthy berry, unpretentious to care for, slightly affected by diseases and pests, but demanding on the soil. It is difficult to find a garden plot with sufficiently acidic soil, where it will feel comfortable, grow and bear fruit without proper attention. Therefore, in order to enjoy delicious berries, you need to make an effort and not make irreparable mistakes.
The nuances of spring and autumn planting
When is it best to plant: in spring or autumn? This question is of interest to many gardeners who have decided to plant blueberries on their site. Planting time directly depends on the climatic conditions of the region. Experienced gardeners recommend planting plants in early spring before the start of sap flow. But with rapid spring, there is a high probability of not having time to land, then it is better to postpone the landing work in the fall.
The main condition for spring planting is that the plant needs to be planted before the buds swell. If you do this later, blueberries will take root worse, grow poorly and may die. It is better to choose plants in containers or pots with a capacity of at least 1 liter so that the roots are not squeezed. Before planting, the container must be lowered into a bucket of water for 20-30 minutes. For 10 liters of water, add 100 g of 9% vinegar or 1 tbsp. l citric acid.
The root system of a good strong seedling should completely braid an earthen lump, but in this form it cannot be immediately planted in a hole. The roots need to be straightened or made in an earthen coma with your finger 4 longitudinal grooves with a depth of not more than 1 cm. This will help the soil in the hole mix well with the soil from the pot, and the roots will quickly grow.
Before planting blueberries in the soil from the container, you need to make furrows in an earthen coma so that the roots quickly grow
In principle, planting in autumn is no different from spring. The main thing is that the seedlings have time to take root well before the onset of frost. For annual seedlings, it is recommended to cut out all weak and thin branches, and to develop developed ones by ½. Two-year-old blueberry seedlings are not pruned.
Blueberry bushes are centenarians. In one place, they have been growing for over 30 years. Therefore, the choice of site for planting must be approached responsibly: this will help to avoid time-consuming transplants, when the bushes will not grow and begin to die.
Choosing a place for the bush
In warm sunny areas, blueberries grow large, juicy and sweet. In the shade or partial shade, the bushes stretch out, grow, but there will be very few berries, they will be small and dry. The site must be protected from strong winds.
Despite the fact that blueberries love watering, its roots do not tolerate stagnation of water, so the depth of groundwater should exceed half a meter. The beds fertilized with manure should be located as far as possible from the plantings of blueberries - such a neighborhood is fatal for her.
The distance between the blueberry bushes in a row is determined by the rule: what height the bushes can reach - such is the distance between them. Depending on the variety, blueberries can be stunted (80–100 cm), medium-sized (1.5–1.8 m), tall (up to 2 m). The distance between the rows of blueberries is 1.5–2 meters.
Blueberries and Neighboring Plants
Blueberry feels good surrounded by junipers, hydrangeas, azaleas, rhododendrons, heather - plants that prefer slightly acidic or acidic soils. Cranberry bushes can be planted under blueberries - they will complement each other well.
Juniper - one of the plants next to which you can plant blueberries
Blueberry Planting Procedure
- The roots of blueberries are located not deep from the soil surface - no more than 20-30 cm. Therefore, it is sufficient to make a landing hole up to 50 cm deep. The diameter of the pit should be 80–90 cm.
Planting hole for blueberries should reach a depth of 50 cm
- At the bottom of the pit, it is necessary to pour drainage with a layer about 10-15 cm thick. It is good to use coarsely bark of conifers, as well as expanded clay, broken brick, crushed stone.
Drainage from coarse pine bark is poured to the bottom of the landing pit
- Then the landing pit is filled with acid peat. A pit of this size will require about 300 liters of fertilizer. You can mix acidic peat and rotted coniferous litter in a ratio of 1: 1 (150 l of peat and 150 l of litter). To loosen the prepared soil, sand and small coniferous sawdust are added to it. Blueberries love very loose, breathable soils.
The planting hole is filled with acid peat
- If the land on the site is very alkaline, then you need to prevent it from mixing with the prepared soil, otherwise its acidity will decrease. To do this, the landing hole is lined with non-woven material or a dense film with drainage holes.
- In a hole filled with soil, you need to make a small hole, under the size of the roots of the seedling and place the plant there, deepening it by several centimeters. The earth around the bush should be compacted, watered and mulched with stale coniferous sawdust or litter.
After planting blueberry seedlings in the prepared soil mixture, the earth is compacted, watered and mulched
- Mulch helps maintain soil moisture and inhibits weed growth. For convenience, a border tape 15–20 cm wide can be installed around the holes.
Mulching the planted blueberry bush helps maintain moisture
A simple way of planting blueberries on the comb is suitable for beginner gardeners, for sites with heavy clay soil or near groundwater. At the selected site, 10 cm of the upper soil layer is removed, instead of it, in the form of a high bed or a hill, previously prepared acidic soil is poured. The bush is planted at the very top, watered and mulched. To prevent the crest from spreading, it can be fenced with wooden sides.
Video: planting and caring for blueberries
Care for planted bushes
To obtain good growth, seedlings should be regularly and abundantly watered 1-2 times a week, pouring two buckets of water under the bush, preventing the slightest drying out of the soil. In dry weather, the bushes should be sprayed daily in the morning and evening.
Abundant watering reduces soil acidity . To maintain the optimum level of acidity in spring and autumn, about 0.5 kg of colloidal sulfur is applied under mulch under each mulch.
Video: soil acidification for blueberries
Planting blueberries with seeds
Growing blueberries from seeds is a complex and lengthy process, but interesting and also low-cost. Indeed, in this way you can get strong seedlings of various varieties.
- Blueberry seeds can be bought, or you can collect them yourself. For this, well-ripened berries are suitable. Their pulp is placed in a glass of water. Seeds sown to the bottom will be suitable for planting. They are collected and dried.
From well-ripened blueberries you can get seeds for planting
- Seeds bought or stored before spring planting are subjected to a stratification procedure: they are placed in wet sand or moss for 80–90 days. All this time, the container with the seeds should be in a cool place where the air temperature is not higher than 5 ° C. If the seeds are planned to be planted immediately after harvest at the end of summer, then they do not need to be stratified .
- Stratified seeds can be sown. For this purpose, various containers are used: flower pots, boxes, containers for seedlings. The main condition is to plant in acid peat . Seeds scatter on the surface of the soil and are covered with damp sawdust on top, with a layer of up to 5 mm.
- The container is covered with glass or film and placed in a warm, sunny place.
A glass-covered box with sown blueberry seeds should be kept in a warm place.
- It is necessary to regularly water and periodically ventilate the mini hotbed.
- The first shoots appear 3-4 weeks after sowing. It is important to remove the coating in time so that the delicate sprouts do not die. Watering at this time should be sufficient and regular.
- When the first true leaves appear, the plants are transplanted into separate 1.5–2 liter containers. In them, seedlings can grow up to two years of age, and then they can be moved to a permanent place.
You can also grow bushes in a greenhouse or greenhouse.
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Young plants need abundant watering. At this time, they build up the root system. Bushes need to be fed with complex mineral fertilizers when they reach the age of one year. Organics are not used for blueberries.
Features of planting blueberries in the regions
With the right agricultural technology in the selection of suitable varieties, blueberries can be successfully grown throughout our continent. The principle of planting and care is the same for many regions. However, there are also features that you should be aware of in order to succeed in growing this berry.
Blueberry feels very comfortable in the cold-temperate Ural climate. You can plant blueberries both in autumn and spring. Bushes planted in the spring have time to take root and acclimatize properly before leaving for the winter; when planted in autumn, blueberries grow more viable and seasoned.
In the Urals, blueberries are sheltered for the winter only in the first year after planting
Planted bushes take shelter for the winter only in the first wintering. The heavy snowfalls characteristic of this region protect the roots well from freezing. In order not to freeze the branches, they are first tilted to the ground and fixed. Especially frosty winters on a blueberry should throw more snow. You can install a wooden or wire frame over the bushes, cover with burlap, and cover with snow on top.
In conditions of the Siberian climate, it is better to plant undersized or mid-sized species of blueberries that have a shorter growing season (70 - 130 days), and manage to lay flower buds and give a crop during a short summer.
The place for planting blueberries must be selected as light as possible, protected from the wind. If the site is located in a lowland, where there is a high probability of soil frost, then it is better to plant the plant on ridges or on high beds.
Planting blueberries in Siberia is better in the fall. Such plants, having time to take root, will be more hardened and resistant to frost, which are possible even in summer. Planting in the spring is unpredictable and there is a high probability that the plant will not take root.
In autumn, with the onset of persistent cold weather, blueberry bushes are tied, bent in the ground, covered with lutrasil or burlap. A frame is installed above the bushes and a spruce branches or dense covering material is laid on it. With timely and proper shelter, the bushes overwinter well.
Many gardeners in the Moscow Region have successful experience in growing garden blueberries. Planting of plants is best done in the fall, taking into account the fact that the bushes must be properly rooted in order to successfully winter. Planting young plants in the spring is not recommended, since in early June frosts are possible and young shoots will freeze.
Freezing blueberries are not observed in snowy winters. Branches should be bent to the ground, secured and covered with spruce branches or sawdust. The bush may die if the temperature is below -30 ° C for a long time in a snowless winter.
Tall blueberries began to grow in Belarus relatively recently, but successfully. Everywhere the widespread swamp blueberry gives way to a cultivated garden tall blueberry. The most favorable soil composition in the south of the country. You can prepare the soil for planting blueberries with the addition of garden soil. Nevertheless, it will be necessary to check the acidity of the resulting soil.
Recently, tall varieties of blueberries have been grown in Belarus
In other parts of the country, blueberries can be grown in properly prepared soil no less productively than in the south. Both spring and autumn season are suitable for planting. Only proper care is needed. With spring return frosts, planted bushes are sprayed with water. Evaporating, moisture will protect young leaves from frost. The time of autumn planting is chosen taking into account the fact that before the onset of frost the bushes must be firmly rooted. Young plants must be covered for the winter.
Blueberries are very fond of the sun, and it is recommended to plant it in open areas. But in the south, temperatures on particularly hot days can reach 50 ° C. Therefore, in these areas it is recommended to allocate a place for partial shade for bushes or to shade them from scorching rays. A prerequisite is abundant regular watering and a good layer of mulch so that the soil does not dry out.
Blueberries begin to bloom in the Krasnodar Territory very early, as soon as the snow melts, in May the fruits are already tied. Therefore, spring planting can be late - the seedlings will begin to bloom. It is better to plant plants in the fall. For the winter, blueberry bushes will have enough lutrasil or other covering material.
The advantage of southern berries compared to those grown in the north is their sweet taste and stronger aroma. In addition, southern berries are larger.
Skeptics claim that it is impossible to grow this northern berry in the Crimea. Of course, the cultivation of blueberries is still not very common, but many Crimean gardeners successfully grow it in their personal plots.
The landing principle is no different from other regions. It is better to plant plants in the fall, in the second half of September. By the first frosts in late October - early November, the bushes are already well rooted. You can postpone landing in the spring, but with early warming, there is a chance not to be in time for the swelling of the kidneys.
Proper watering of blueberries is especially important in regions with a hot climate.
On especially hot days, the bushes are shaded. Be sure to monitor the soil moisture. Ideal - equip drip irrigation.
It is not necessary to cover the bushes for the winter, they tolerate mild winters safely. But if in the region there is a chance of frosts down to -20 ° C in the absence of snow cover, then it is better to play it safe and protect the plant with covering material .
Blueberries can be called a relatively new berry crop in the country. Nevertheless, it is becoming more and more popular every year. And for good reason, because the climatic conditions throughout Ukraine are very suitable for growing blueberries.
Subject to all the subtleties of agricultural technology, growing blueberries is no more difficult than black currants, and it will not be difficult to get a tall blueberry crop.
Planting blueberries is recommended in autumn, in mid-September. Before steady frosts, plants will have time to take root well. Since there are periods in a snowless winter when the temperature drops below -25 ° C, it is better to cover plants.
The main mistakes in the cultivation of blueberries
Some gardeners, inspired by the idea of growing blueberries, often get negative experiences and come to the conclusion that growing this berry is fraught with many difficulties. In fact, not familiarizing yourself with the features of agricultural technology, you can not only not achieve the growth and fruiting of blueberries, but also ruin the bushes.
Table: the most common misconceptions when planting and caring for blueberries
|Planting bushes in the shade||Many people think that if the swampy blueberries grow in the forests, then its cultivated relative prefers the same conditions. Yes, garden blueberry bushes will give increased growth, but there will be no berries on them.|
|Lowland landing||In the wetlands, the roots of the blueberry will rot and the plant will die quickly. In addition, there is a high probability of damage to the bushes by frost.|
|Insufficient soil acidity||It is not necessary to determine the acidity of the soil only by weeds growing on it. Usually horsetail and horse sorrel grow on slightly acidic soils, and blueberries prefer strongly acidic. You can determine the acidity with a special device or test strips. In slightly acidic, neutral and alkaline soils, blueberries will not grow. The fact is that blueberry roots cannot independently absorb nutrients, it helps her in this mycosis - a special fungus on the roots that lives only in a strongly acidic environment, and dies in other conditions. Soil acidity decreases over time, and it must be constantly maintained at the right level.|
|Planting blueberries in the area where vegetables were grown before, under which organic fertilizers were applied||Blueberries cannot tolerate organics. She needs to be planted in a place that has not been fertilized for more than 5 years.|
|The bush was planted with dry roots.||If you do not pre-soak the earthen lump and do not straighten the roots, then they will not start growing. Accordingly, the bush will not grow.|
|Excess fertilizer||You can not feed the bushes with organic fertilizers, only mineral ones. Most blueberries need nitrogen. But it is better to underfeed with mineral fertilizers than to overfeed, otherwise mycosis can also die.|
|Trimming bushes under the age of six||Blueberries are the only plants requiring minimal pruning. The first three years, virtually no blueberries are pruned. In subsequent years, in the early spring, two to three fruiting branches are removed for strong young growth.|
It’s all the same to plant when, autumn is spring. Moreover, decent seedlings in pots are sold. But with the landing itself it’s more difficult. The earth should always be moist, but there should be no stagnation of water. Her roots are superficial. They have mycorrhiza with mushrooms. And it MANDATORY to constantly acidify the soil!Northerner
It is necessary to plant several bushes, if one is planted, it will bear fruit, but weakly. Before planting, it is better to put the container in a container of water for an hour, so that the root is nourished. Dig a large hole and cover it with red peat and plant blueberries. It will also grow in the ground, but prefers acidic soil. Frost resistance depends on the variety. There are varieties in which part of the fruit does not ripen in the cold summer. Garden blueberries require light, humus, acidic soils. They prefer moist soils, but do not tolerate flooding. Full fruiting for 4 years after planting.Anatoly Gorobets
Blueberry culture is very fruitful. And besides, blueberry flowers are resistant to return frosts. Therefore, I think this culture is very promising for Siberia and the Urals. Blueberries grow well on ordinary soils, and even carbonate. If the soil is acidified with ground sulfur powder before planting. Just pour a good handful of sulfur, carefully dig it with a garden pitchfork. Plant a seedling in prepared soil. And then mulch with sawdust, and so contain. Regular watering is desirable. And no more "fertilizers" are required. You can apply and "colloidal sulfur." And without digging at all. Just by spilling the earth with a suspension of sulfur. That is, the only important condition is the maintenance of an acidic environment. It is very important! For the existence of symbiotic blueberry mushrooms. They feed the plants. And for them, the second necessary condition is organic mulch. I use softwood sawdust (large, from sawing). I have carbonate soils. And blueberries have been growing for many years. Harvest grows steadily with age. Under a bush of blueberries, lingonberries. And next to it is cranberries. And all the plants feel great, and regularly bear fruit annually. For the winter, blueberries, I just bend down so that the shoots remain all winter under the snow. I have a snow cover of 50-60 cm for years. I do not cut the bush. I only remove dried shoots if this happens.Aleksandr Kuznetsov
The process of growing blueberries is time-consuming, but interesting, and with due observance of all the rules will succeed. Strong and beautiful bushes with large, fragrant and surprisingly healthy berries will be a reward to stubborn gardeners.