Check out this essay on blueberries–and then check out the great selection of varieties we have available at Vander Giessen’s!
From “Green Profit Magazine” March 2011. By Chris MacLaggan
Edible plant gardening is one of today’s hottest trends. Bringing edibles into the landscape satisfies the need to know our food sources, fulfills our desire for sustainable gardening, and adds the benefit of a bounty of goodness coming right from the landscape. Blueberries are a perfect landscaping plant: four seasons of beauty and the ultimate edible experience.
Blueberries are true American native plants. Incredible natural breeding work has brought forth a range of varieties that fill every landscape niche with texture, color and fruit. There are low-bush selections that will perform as compact border plants. Well-behaved, mid-sized varieties are ideal for a foundation planting. Tight, uniform varieties make a productive hedgerow, while vigorous upright cultivars create beautiful screens.
For small yards, apartments or condominiums, blueberries excel in patio containers, which is also a foolproof way to grow them if you have poor soils. There are low-chill and high-chill selections that will perform in a broad range of climate zones—from the Deep South to the far north. Relatively disease and pest free, blueberries are low-maintenance, easy-care solutions for your garden.
Blueberries are perfect for every season and every garden. In spring, these shrubs have an abundance of beautiful bell-shaped flowers in shades of white, pink and red. Summer brings on a bounty of fruit with varieties that can produce super-jumbo berries as large as quarters all the way down to smaller berries ideal for baking. Packed with antioxidants proven to combat many diseases and benefit overall health, blueberries are the superfood homeowners can grow themselves. And don’t forget, kids love blueberries, too. By including a mix of early-, mid- and late-season varieties in the landscape, the fruiting season can be extended up to several months in many regions.
In the fall, blueberry plants burst forth with hot colors of gold, oranges and fiery reds. In the dead of winter, they bring vibrant cane colors of gold, yellow, pink and chartreuse to the dull winter landscape. Some varieties have evergreen leaves in the south. Blueberries are also a favorite of those who like to bring nature close to home. The flowers and fruit attract a variety of hummingbirds, songbirds, deer and other wildlife.
As gardeners seek plants for their landscapes that offer a true value proposition, blueberries are a great choice for beauty, health and fun. Bring some blue to the green landscape.