Caring for wild blueberries

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by flutemandolin, May 26, 2004.

  1. flutemandolin

    flutemandolin mark an eight, dude!

    Aug 13, 2003
    I'm so excited...I just went walking on our trail with the kids last night and in a clearing I found a large patch of wild blueberries in bloom! I had seen the plants last year and thought they might be blueberries but I never saw any flowers or berries. This might be their first year setting fruit. I'm just wondering if there is anything I can do to encourage them; obviously my soil pH must be low enough already. Could I dig a few plants and move them somewhere else, or would it be better to take cuttings? Should I weed or mulch the area where they are growing wild?

    Thanks for any advice! :)
  2. heelpin

    heelpin Well-Known Member

    Nov 18, 2003
    We don't have wild blueberries in the south but we do have Huckleberries and I assume the are closely related. I wouldn't do anything to them except maybe a light mulch, the roots are very shallow. I would wait until next February to try and transplant any sprouts.

  3. owhn

    owhn Well-Known Member

    Oct 29, 2003
    Years ago I was offered wild blueberries from my in-laws place in northern NY.

    They have relatively short roots. I dug as deep as I could/needed the in the sandy soil (maybe 12-16inches???) and put them in a heavy black plastic bag (all I had) in back of pickup truck for trip home to CT. It rained... and I left the bag of draining blueberies in the garage until I could deal with them later in week. I kinda figured I had killed em.

    Nonetheless, I planted them next to my expensive and excellent but as of yet unyielding Stark blueberries. No special techniques, just same ground level....


    Not only did i get those nice tiny wild blueberries but all of a sudden I got great yields of the cultivated ones....


  4. big rockpile

    big rockpile If I need a Shelter

    Feb 24, 2003
    Wild Blueberries need light,but they need the Leaves.Its a balance thing around here,where I have been picking berries its starting to get too dark.But I'm starting to get berries where I've been cutting wood.We have areas that will produce berries but they got to quit burning it a couple years.

    big rockpile
  5. havenberryfarm

    havenberryfarm Well-Known Member

    Dec 9, 2003
    Northwest Ohio
    If you want to mulch them, I would recommend pine needles. They are acidic. Be careful about weeding as the blueberry roots are indeed very shallow. They do not like fertilizer, so do not baby them. I am not sure about cuttings, but they do transplant very nicely in the spring, especially in wet weather. They prefer sandy loam and a pH of 4.5-6.0. If you want to transplant a few, try the youngest plants. They recover faster and are less likely to suffer in the summer heat.
  6. South of Forty

    South of Forty Active Member

    Feb 25, 2004
    I have transplanted wild huckleberry which are the same as your northern blueberries I believe. They do not take transplant shock very well and if they survive it may be years before they will be strong enough to fruit again. Only do it during the fall or early winter. They will also require irrigation the first year after transplanting or they will not make it. I would leave them be and simply improve the light to the exsisting plants and give them room to grow by cutting down vegetation around them. A teeny bit of fertilizer wont hurt but dont overdue it.