How to Grow Blueberries

Written by Linda Paquette

Continued from page 1

The most important element is growing blueberries is soil composition. To makerepparttar most of your blueberry planting, begin necessary soil amendmentsrepparttar 149022 year before planting. Blueberries grow best in loose, sandy loam. Although you may run across wild blueberries growing in a bog, on closer inspection you’ll see that plants grow on small, natural hills.

Blueberries need moisture retentive, well-drained, humus-rich soil with good aeration. Soil acidity is also very important in growing blueberries. Plants need a pH of 4.0 to no more than 5.0 to thrive. Initially, bringrepparttar 149023 pH down to acceptable levels with sulphur or 4 to 6 inches of acid peat mixed intorepparttar 149024 first 6 to 8 inches of topsoil. Also, enrich soil with good organic compost.

Planting blueberries

Although most blueberries self-pollinate, plant two or more varieties within a type for a larger harvest of more voluptuous fruits. Five plants provide enough blueberries for fresh eating, drying, and preserving for a family of four.

Plant blueberries in spring after all danger of frost passes. When growing several plants, you may find it easier to prepare a bed rather than digging holes for individual plants. Add a generous portion of peat moss to your trench or hole both to increaserepparttar 149025 organic content and to ensure continued soil acidity.

Standard spacing for highbush, half-high, and rabbiteye bushes is five to six feet apart in rows eight to ten feet distant. Dig holes or make your row three to four inches deeper thanrepparttar 149026 size ofrepparttar 149027 root balls. Pack soil firmly aroundrepparttar 149028 roots of each plant.

Plant lowbush varieties one to three feet apart in rows three to four feet distant. Cover about a third ofrepparttar 149029 top stems with soil to encourage runners to develop.

Once established, a blueberry bush may remain productive for decades with just a minimum of care. The second part of this article is available onrepparttar 149030 siterepparttar 149031 author writes for.

Linda is an author of Gardening Tips Tricks and Howto's  of Gardening Guides and the Lawn Care section of the Lawnmower Guide.

A Hedge for the Children

Written by Janette Blackwell

Continued from page 1

Whenrepparttar black raspberries got ripe, neighborhood grownups and children gathered to gobble down undisciplined berries warm withrepparttar 148906 sun and eye each other and laugh for sheer happiness.

As a hedge, they were a mistake. As a treat, they were fabulous.

The main hedge facingrepparttar 148907 street was a row of Nanking cherry bushes about eight feet high. In early spring they were covered with tiny pearl-like buds and white blooms. In summer they glistened with red cherries within lush green growth. The cherries tasted like a cross between pie cherries and sweet cherries. They were good.

One summer day I looked outrepparttar 148908 window and saw a little boy coming downrepparttar 148909 street. I didn't recognize him, but he apparently recognized ripe cherries when he saw them. He stopped and stared atrepparttar 148910 bushes, then moved in closer. I was about to go torepparttar 148911 door and tell him to take allrepparttar 148912 cherries he wanted, but then I realized he was trying a new maneuver. He turned around facingrepparttar 148913 street and began to back up torepparttar 148914 bushes. Aha! I thought. That kid's had some education that didn't come from books.

His technique was pretty good. He looked blandly intorepparttar 148915 distance asrepparttar 148916 branches behind him jiggled up and down. When his hands were filled with cherries, he started off running. And I ran too -- torepparttar 148917 door. I meant to call out, "Little boy! Little boy! Come back." But then I realized that would just make him run faster.

I wanted to say, "You can eat my cherries all afternoon, if you like." But by that time, in a splendid burst of speed, he had roundedrepparttar 148918 corner and was out of sight.

You can come back any time, little boy.

Find Janette Blackwell’s storytelling country cookbook, STEAMIN’ DOWN THE TRACKS WITH VIOLA HOCKENBERRY, at Food and Fiction, -- or visit her Delightful Food Directory at

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