Features of growing blueberries in the suburbs
In recent years, gardeners - lovers have been fascinated by a tall blueberry garden. However, many complain that the bushes they grow small, do not give berries, and some just die, despite the good care and regular feeding. The explanation for this is quite simple: in blueberry farming, there are a number of techniques that take into account the individual characteristics of culture, which must be strictly observed.
I grow a tall, tall blueberry garden for more than 10 years and regularly get high yields of its amazing berries. So today I want to share my secrets with you.
Homeland of wild blueberry bush is considered North America. From time immemorial, the Indian tribes used it for food, then it became the favorite delicacy of the first settlers, who brought seedlings from the forest and planted in their plots. With good care, the berries on the bushes became larger and sweeter.
At the beginning of the last century, this culture was interested in American scientists and breeders. In 1906 in the private nursery of the famous scientist-biologist F. Covill of the selected plants of wild blueberries, the first varieties - Brooks and Russell - were bred. And by the end of 30-ies, already in several scientific institutions of the country, about 20 varieties were created. Enterprising farmers began to create large plantations of this culture and supply it to other countries. And the price of berries was very high. A profitable business interested many foreign entrepreneurs.
At the end of the 20-ies of the last century, scientific works on the creation of new varieties of blueberry garden were held in Canada. It must be said that the best varieties and on the taste of berries and winter hardiness of plants were obtained here. And today in Canada blueberry garden has become the most popular berry, leaving far behind black currant, blueberries and other berry crops.
In our country, the first work on the selection of blueberry garden began in the mid 60-ies of the last century in the GBS of the USSR Academy of Sciences. Here was laid the whole garden of varieties of tall blueberry garden, obtained from the USA and Germany. Planted in the experimental sites are also a few medium-sized varieties sent to zonal research institutes of the non-chernozem zone. To date, the collection of GBS RAS has more 20 varieties of tall blueberry garden. Serious work on its selection is also conducted in the Novosibirsk Botanical Garden.
As a result of the research, it was found that early and medium varieties are best suited for growing in the middle zone of Russia.
PECULIARITIES OF GROWING BLUEBERRY IN MOSCOW REGION
The most important thing you should remember about - blueberry garden grows not just on acidic, but on acidified soils (pH less than 3,5)! But even with such acidity it will not grow on clay and heavy loam.
So, for good growth and regular fruiting blueberry garden needs light (well water and breathable) fertile acidified soils!
Therefore, the pits for landing are prepared as follows.
We take out the soil to a depth of 2 bayonets of the shovel. The diameter of the landing pit is 80 cm. The upper fertile layer is laid aside. On clay soils on the bottom we lay drainage from sand mixed with gravel (layer 5-6 cm), on sandy we put the same thickness of clay (so that water does not leave quickly). Then separately prepare the planting soil. In equal proportions we take the top layer of the earth from the landing pit, river sand, humus (compost or reparted manure), sawdust, peat and coniferous fall (pine or fir). All this is well mixed and fill the landing pit.
Pits are cooked for 2-3 days before planting in order to have time to acidify the soil in them, without burning the roots of the seedlings. And then many gardeners make a terrible mistake. Than only the earth is not acidified! And acetic essence, and hydrochloric acid, and other similar chemicals. Do not forget that the plant is a living organism that can also be poisoned!
Acid soil under blueberry garden is exclusively a solution of citric acid (2 standard package for 10 l water for a single plant). First, the soil is well soaked from the hose with ordinary water to a mushy state, and then 1 lemonade of a solution of citric acid is poured there.
Planted through 2 days, making a depression in the middle of the pit and well spreading the roots. After planting, the plant is watered (2 watering cans under the bush) with ordinary water. Above the tree trunk, mulch with sawdust or peat. I'm still laying it on top of it spruce and pine cones in the 3 layer. They will retain moisture well, and soil acidify, and weeds will not grow. And air permeability is improved.
When planting, remember that blueberry garden is a light-loving plant, so plant it in a well-lit place, protected from the wind.
Fertilize blueberry in a garden is exactly the same as other berry crops. In the spring, it needs nitrogen, in summer and autumn - phosphorus and potassium. At the beginning of May I injected the manure and some mineral complex. At the end of August, after the fruiting process ends - double superphosphate, potassium sulfate and complex mineral fertilizer.
During the season 3 times acidify all bushes with a solution of citric acid (in spring and autumn - 2 package for 10 l of water, in summer -1 package).
And more about what it is necessary to remember. The pigeon is tall, the plant is the "water-swan". In the heat it needs frequent and abundant watering. In the rainy summer, I make temporary drainage grooves to divert water from the stump circle, so that it does not stand there, preventing the access of oxygen to the roots.
That's all the tricks! Following all the recommendations, every summer you will collect high yields of this very tasty, and most importantly - useful berry!
GRAPHICS COLLECTION AT MY SITE
Many Russian gardeners prefer varieties of American and Canadian selection. They have a high ability to quickly form new shoots, are characterized by intensive growth, large delicious berries. Domestic varieties, in my opinion, have the worst taste and other qualities and fruits, and the plant itself, apparently because at the time of their creation our low-browed blueberry was used.
I will tell only about those grades that I experienced myself. 12 years ago, it was difficult to get blueberry seedlings. The plant is cross-aliased, so it was necessary to plant, at least, 2 bush. I was lucky: I bought two elite seedlings, but unfortunately, one grade - Blyukrop. To my surprise, in 2 they gave the first berries, and on the third they blossomed and pleased us with good harvests.
Medium-ripe, very fruitful variety, one of the most famous and loved by gardeners. Most suitable for cultivation in the central part of Russia. It is considered the standard for other varieties. The shrub is tall, erect, with a height of 1,8-2 m.
It is distinguished by a high yield (7-9 kg from an adult bush) and good adaptation to soil conditions, well suited to drought. The berries are large, light-blue with a slight touch. The taste is pleasant, a bit tart. Berries of very high quality, suitable for manual and mechanized harvesting (especially fruits from late collections). In case of overloading the harvest under the branches, you need to substitute the supports. After 9-10 years the bush requires a strong pruning. One of the most frost-resistant varieties (withstands a decrease in temperature to minus 36 °), is resistant to spring frosts.
In the next two years I planted another 4 of excellent varieties, which I also recommend to readers with pleasure.
Reference by topic: 6 mistakes in growing blueberries: proper care for blueberries
The variety is distinguished by the largest berries. Breed by the selectors of the University of Michigan. Refers to the northern tall varieties of blueberries, which are characterized by relatively late flowering and high winter hardiness. The height of the bush is on average 1,3-1,6 m. The bush is uplifted and spreads out - up to 1,25 m in width. The lignified shoots of an adult plant are powerful (3-4 cm in diameter), brown in color. The berries are light-blue in color, covered with dense wax coating. They are very large-diameter up to 30 mm. The skin is dense, with a small hem, the flesh is greenish, pleasant sweet taste. By the way, the juice of berries of this variety is colorless and leaves no stains on clothes. It is best for cultivation in the central part of Russia.
Denis Blue (Denise Blue).
Berries are large, weighing about 1,8 g, sweet. The flesh is juicy, elastic, sweet and sour. Fruiting begins in the first half of August. From one bush gather up to 8 kg of berries.
After collection, they can be stored in a cellar or in a refrigerator for more than 2 weeks. The variety is self-pollinated, frost-resistant, resistant to anthracnose and other fungal diseases. Grade of the average maturation period.
Hybrid of tall and narrow-leaved Canadian (short) blueberry. The most winter-hardy and the shortest among the medium-sized (the height of the bush does not exceed 80 cm), but with good yields - about 3 kg per plant. The berries are large - up to 20 mm in diameter, dark blue with a small hem. Thick pulp is sweet and fragrant. Harvest begins to ripen in late July. I collect it in 4-5 receptions for a month. Frost resistance of the bush and flowering buds is very high - up to minus 40 °. Berries of this variety have excellent healing properties. They recorded the highest content of anthocyanins - about 7 g per 100 g of dry berries.
North Kangri (North Country).
A wonderful grade of average maturity. Fruiting begins in the first days of August. The bush is powerful, round in shape, and has a height of 70-90. The berries are large enough (up to 15 mm in diameter) and very tasty - sweet with a pleasant scent of forest blueberries. Frost resistance of the bush and flowering buds is very high - up to minus 40 °. The variety is resistant to disease and drought. The crop is average (2,5-3,5 kg per bush), but regular. The variety is partly self-fertilized, however, additional pollination raises the yield at least twice. The very same variety is the best pollinator for any other varieties.
© Author: O. IVANOVA, gardener-experimenter The Moscow region