Blueberry plants bring many attractive stages to a landscape. They are beautiful blue-foliaged plants with stunning bell-shaped flowers each spring that bear yummy, tasty berries in the summer, followed with gorgeous fall color. What more could you want from a landscape plant?
Blueberries are fruits rich in antioxidants that enhance memory, aid anti-aging, and improve vision. Mainly, home-grown berries are money saving fruits that just taste better than store bought!
Plant blueberries in a full to partial sun spot in your garden. They love acidic soil so when you plant, use a 50/50 mixture of Watters Potting Soil and native earth. Plant bushes about 4 feet apart. The planting hole should be twice the width and depth of the grower's pot.
Place the plant in the hole and fill around the rootball with the soil mix. The top of the root should be even with the surrounding earth. Firmly tamp the loose soil around the roots to eliminate the possibility of air pockets.
Water the newly planted blueberry thoroughly with a mixture of Watters liquid 'Root & Grow'. This will reduce transplant shock and stimulate new root formation. The more roots under the plant, the more fruits next spring.
Feed newly planted bushes by sprinkling the top of the planting soil with Watters 7-4-4 'All Purpose Food.'
If you are planting blueberries in a container use 100% Watters Potting Soil, not the blend of native soil.
It's hard to resist trying young blueberries once you see them beginning to turn blue, but you'll want to wait until they are fully ripe before harvesting. If the berries still are a red or pinkish color, they aren't quite ready to pick. Once they appear plump and evenly blue they are ready to eat. Fruiting blueberry plants will produce handfuls of their delicious fruits all summer.
It's easy to preserve blueberries. Simply seal them in freezer bags and keep them frozen until needed.
From topping breakfast cereal and lunchtime salads, to enriching afternoon smoothies, and for blueberry cobbler at dessert, blueberries are good for almost every meal of the day!
July Gardening Classes
Gardening Class – Held in the comfort of Watters’ greenhouse, classes begin at 9:30 every Saturday morning and are free of charge. These are the topics for classes in July:
July 15 - Attract Birds, Bees & Butterflies – Monarchs, Swallowtails, and bees are in trouble, but we can help! This class goes into all the details of how to help the local natives. Because they like so many of the same plants, hummingbirds are simply a bonus to this class. Learn the best local trees, shrubs, flowers, and grasses that naturally bring the best wildlife.
July 22 – Perennial Flowers with Impressive Blooms July rains make this the ideal month to plant perennials in the garden. Students learn how to design for a continual four season bloom. Notable mentions will be our local native bloomers.
July 29 - Easy Grow Roses – There are so many different roses to choose from--more than your grandmother ever knew about! Learn the difference between hybrid tea, floribunda, shrub, carpet and so much more. Talking points include the best rose varieties, care, and placement for non-stop blooms. Free to local gardeners that want more fragrance & color in the yard.
Take a look at the entire summer class lineup .
In case you missed it, listen here to the Mountain Gardener podcast:
Until next week, I'll be helping gardeners with heat loving plants here at Watters Garden Center.
Ken Lain can be found throughout the week at Watters Garden Center, 1815 W. Iron Springs Rd in Prescott, or contacted through his web site at WattersGardenCenter.com