It’s that time of year when I try to plant as many fruit and nut trees as I can!
I’ll cover the proper way to plant fruit trees next week, but today I want to show you how to plant blueberries!
I bought the “blueberry collection” from Miller nurseries and it just arrived yesterday. I’m so excited to add these to my existing 6 blueberry plants, 12 plants should produce plenty of blueberries for our family once they are all producing, which takes about 3 years. The first 6 plants are in their third year.
We also LOVE blueberry jam, here’s the how-to!
First, I soaked the blueberry plants in a big tub of water, an hour is minimum/12 hours max.
Second, soil preparation. Blueberries prefer acidic soil, with pH under 6.0 if possible. Knowing this, I mulched them last fall with decomposing wood chips mixed with well-aged manure. When planting new blueberry plants, you should take the time to acidify your soil. There are products that will do this, including sulphur. However, I found myself without the “soil acidifier” that I ordered, it’s not here yet, but the plants are. Rats. I hate when that happens.
Deep down, I love those opportunities that force me to think beyond the obvious and come up with another solution. How could I acidify this soil with something homemade? Well, this link was helpful and I decided to use the same thing I mulched my other blueberry plants with last fall and that’s decomposed wood chips with aged manure. I also considered the coffee grounds, that was my second choice.
How I decided to do this was to dig down about 24 inches and put a layer of the wood chips down, and then cover with soil. This way the new plant wouldn’t be burned, even though the manure was aged.
Soil prep is so critical! It’s the last opportunity you’ll have to inspire those roots to spread out and grow. Take the time to do it right!
Third, I made sure that the soil that went back into the hole was well broken up. I also added some of my well-composted garden soil in there as well, so that the young roots will be able to grow.
Fourth, water well and continue to water once a day for a few weeks, taking into consideration rainfall.
Three years later, you should have a blueberry harvest! Don’t forget to continue to acidify the soil around your blueberries, that’s how they grow best. A couple of times a summer should be good enough.
Then over to the strawberry patch, I’ve been meaning to get the straw from fall off and pull the millions of chickweeds from around them. I can’t wait to see how the strawberry patch, that I quadrupled last fall, does this Spring!
While I was digging around and exposing the strawberry plants, even though it might have been smarter to wait until after 4/17, which is our last frost date, I saw a fur-lined nest.
Look what I found! Baby bunnies! All the kids ooohhhed and aaahhhhed, how precious.
I guess they won’t be so precious if they come back to eat my lettuce! :)
So, how was YOUR week? Tell us about it!