Blueberry questions

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MsWildFlower
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Blueberry questions

Post: #84330 MsWildFlower
Wed Feb 13, 2008 8:04 am

I have a lone blueberry plant which was planted by the previous house owners so I have no idea on how old it is or type etc. My question is that it doesn't seem to be growing much and the leaves are a variegated purble sort of a colour ...

So my questions to you kind folk are ....

What colour are the leaves normally?

Should I get another blueberry to keep it company?

They like acid rich soil don't they? What is the best way of achieving this?

I was wondering if I should set up an area in the garden for acidic loving plants such as this blueberry ... do they transplant ok? What other plants could I chuck in the plot?

Sigh .... will I ever have a productive garden? No blueberries, apricots and peach trees have curly leaf, apples have codling moth, raspberries are not producing, strawberries had an extremely poor harvest ... Ahhhhhhhhhhh.
Sue

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Post: #84368 Cassiepod
Wed Feb 13, 2008 11:58 am

I've just planted three Blueberries from my garden centre last year. When i bought themthey had purply leaves which dropeed for the winter so they're now just stick (like all the other bush fuits)

For creatign acitiy I'v eplanted them in an area that as overgrown with bracken which has created beautiful crumbly soil. I haven't actually tested the pH but it's supposed to be low.... last season's bracken would be a good mulch if you're anywaher near a source.

Finger's crossed they'll fruit this year. I don't expect many according to the mannie in the know but they should increase year on year.

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Post: #84688 Cheezy
Fri Feb 15, 2008 11:06 am

I'm just finishing off a fruit cage, so I've been checking out about different friut. I think you definitely need a couple of bushes to pollinate.

To increase the acidity you could mulch with Erecasious compost. If you still have your xmas tree you could shread and use this. I know coffee grounds are extreamly acidic, so a mulch of this might work. Blueberries like a lot of moisture as well, so make sure the ground is wet then apply a good mulch to keep in the moisture.
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So you know how great Salsify is as a veg, what about Cavero Nero,great leaves all through the winter , then in Spring sprouting broccolli like flowers! Takes up half as much room as broccolli

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Post: #84696 Millymollymandy
Fri Feb 15, 2008 12:15 pm

I planted just the one last year (it must have said self pollinating or I wouldn't have bought it!). I dug in lots of ericaceous compost as my soil is - well I'm not quite sure, but at least neutral to a bit acid. I have rhodos but the blue hydrangea I bought is now purple! :lol:

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Post: #84760 MsWildFlower
Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:34 pm

Thanks for the replies. The ericaceous compost, is that a commercially produced compost in the UK (I'm in NZ)?
Sue

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Post: #84764 marshlander
Fri Feb 15, 2008 8:42 pm

Blood and sand! :banghead:
I planted 3 bushes land autumn, only now do I read up and see I should have bought at least two DIFFERENT varieties to cross polinate.
I don't remember if mine were supposed to be self pollinating or not - can't find the lable to see what I bought even - have to wait and see I suppose - no fruit = buy another bush.
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Post: #84792 Jandra
Sat Feb 16, 2008 8:42 am

I have one bush (hopefully self-pollinating) which I planted with a few buckets of compost and mulched heavily with pine bark. That's supposed to make the soil more acidic. It seems to be quite happy.

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Re: Blueberry questions

Post: #84859 ina
Sat Feb 16, 2008 8:50 pm

MsWildFlower wrote: blueberry ... do they transplant ok?


I shall find out this year - I stupidly planted my blueberries in about the driest spot in my garden, and intend to transfer them to large containers this year. Only small holes in the bottom, lots of compost and pine needles or so, lots of water (if it's a bit waterlogged, it'll turn acidic anyway).

And then I just have to keep them out of reach of my dear little goats... :roll: They have so far managed to "prune" them every year! :cry:
Ina
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Post: #85403 Cheezy
Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:05 am

I think I remember that you will still get fruit if you only have one tree, it's just the quantity will be much less than if you had a few different types.

I'm probably going to get mine from Blackmoor nurseries. THey send 3 different types in 1 L pots for £13, which is the best deal I've seen

I've bought stuff from them and they are good ( http://www.blackmoor.co.uk/)

They also have a great page of advice on planting and pruning, and sell loads of fruit types.
Last edited by Cheezy on Thu Feb 21, 2008 4:38 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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So you know how great Salsify is as a veg, what about Cavero Nero,great leaves all through the winter , then in Spring sprouting broccolli like flowers! Takes up half as much room as broccolli

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Post: #85405 hamster
Thu Feb 21, 2008 10:38 am

Ooh, brilliant. Thanks Cheezy, that looks great.
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Post: #85532 frozenthunderbolt
Fri Feb 22, 2008 3:55 am

manure peat and pine duff. perfect.
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Post: #86774 Cheezy
Fri Feb 29, 2008 12:48 pm

Just taken delivery of my Blueberry's from my previous post's link. Ordered them on Monday, arrived last night (along with raspberry's,strawberry's and a cherry tree.)

Now in the special blueberry planting instructions it specifically recommends that animal manure is NOT used in the soil preparion, rather scuppers my plans, and I have no idea why, other than it migh encourage too much vegetative growth at the expense of flowers and therefore fruit.
It's not easy being Cheezy
So you know how great Salsify is as a veg, what about Cavero Nero,great leaves all through the winter , then in Spring sprouting broccolli like flowers! Takes up half as much room as broccolli

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Post: #86899 Millymollymandy
Sat Mar 01, 2008 5:54 am

My fruit book says to mulch them with leaf mould so I did that yesterday.

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Post: #86983 ina
Sat Mar 01, 2008 6:57 pm

MsWildFlower wrote:Thanks for the replies. The ericaceous compost, is that a commercially produced compost in the UK (I'm in NZ)?


Sorry - just realised nobody had replied to this question... Yes, it is a commercial compost. Basically, it's a very acidic compost; achieved by a high proportion of peat. Which, of course, we don't want to use nowadays, as we are rapidly running out of the stuff! (Peak peat! :mrgreen: )

If you can, make some compost yourself for the future with conifer needles. Otherwise, ordinary compost and a bit of water logging should do the trick.
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Post: #87020 Gytrash
Sat Mar 01, 2008 8:31 pm

I'm sure I remember reading in an old Gardening Which? magazine that said Ericaceous compost is a bit of a swizz?! :?

The article reckoned you could just buy a bag of bog-standard ('scuse the pun! :mrgreen: ) peat, which is acidic anyway. (Not 'multi-purpose' compost, which has lime added).

The peat is cheaper than the ericaceous compost but does exactly the same job. As most of the added nutrients in bagged composts only last 6 weeks or so, you'll still be feeding after 6 weeks whatever compost you use.

The conclusion was: don't waste your money buying ericaceous compost. Just get a bag of peat and liquid feed your plants.

(Of course, all the above is assuming you're still using peat-based composts and growing the blueberries in pots!)


We planted a blueberry bush today. To the back-fill we added a couple of handfulls of organic chicken manure pellets, some quite well-rotted woodchip and some old spent mushroom compost. (Which I'm hoping has no trace of lime left in it!)... See what happens!


Cheers
Dave


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