Blueberries: A Homesteading Guide To Fresh Backyard Berries

Home Garden Blueberries: A Homesteading Guide To Fresh Backyard Berries

So you want to know more about beloved blueberries? If you’d like to find out how it grows, how to store it to preserve freshness, and ways to eat it, then you’re in for a treat!

Blueberries: A Homesteading Guide To Fresh Backyard Berries

Color me blue with blueberry. It’s a great fruit full of wonderful benefits. From being a great antioxidant to something that may help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, what reason is there for you not to eat it? Blueberries are often expensive at the market, so add them to your garden this year and grow your own right on the homestead.

Here’s a great homesteading guide for blueberries on how you can start planting, how to choose what kind, and what you can do after harvest. Enjoy!

The Incredible Blueberry: Fact Sheet For Homesteading. Which Blueberry bush is right for your garden?  Click through for details on PioneerSettler.com

Thanks to Hobby Farms for this great guide!

The Incredible Blueberry

Grow, harvest and enjoy these tasty garden gems!

Growing Blueberries

Requirements for the Perfect Blueberry:

  • Full sun
  • 3″ to 4″ mulch: wood chips, pine needles, leaves
  • Rich soil: acidic (pH 4.5 to 5.2), well-drained, moist, high in humus

How to maintain it:

  • For yellow leaves – Add sulfur

Tip on how to fix it: Incorporate 3/4 lb. per 100 sq. ft. until pH tests around 4.5.

  • Prune yearly in late winter starting when plants are 3 to 4 years old.
  • Cut off weak spindly growth and canes that are over 6 years old.

Extend the Season

Harvest berries from June to September by planting varieties with a range of ripening dates.

  • Early: Earliblue, Climax, Patriot
  • Early-Mid: Northland, Bluejay, Spartan
  • Mid: Bluecrop, Blueray, Berkley
  • Mid-Late: Chandler, Rubel, Nelson
  • Late: Elliott, Legacy, Aurora

Harvest it!

Gather berries a few days after they turn blue. Ripe ones will drop off in your hands.

Store it!

  • Freezer: 10-12 months; store unwashed and rinse before using.
  • Refrigerator: up to 2 weeks in 32°F.

How Tall Do Blueberries Grow?

Highbush Blueberry

Highbush. image source

Rabbiteye Blueberries

  • up to 10 feet
  • tolerant of heat and poor soil
  • zone 7 – 9

Northern Highbush Blueberries

  • up to 8 feet
  • most commonly grown
  • zones 4 – 7

Half-High Blueberries

  • up to 6 feet
  • hybrid cross between highbush and lowbush
  • zones 3 – 7

Lowbush Blueberries

  • up to 4 feet
  • classic wild blueberry
  • zones 3 – 7

Yield Blueberries

  • Lowbush: 1-pint berries per foot of row
  • Half-High: 2 to 8 lbs. berries per plant
  • Northern Highbush: 5 to 10 lbs. berries per plant
  • Rabbiteye: 15 lbs. berries per plant

Eating Blueberries

Blueberry Pie

image source

Now that you’ve grown and harvested your berries, time to find out ways to enjoy it!

A Piece of Pie

Try these tasty blueberry varieties for baking and pie making.

  • Rubel
  • Jersey
  • Bluejay
  • Hardyblue
  • Bluegold
  • Northland

ALSO TRY: 24 Recipes for Blueberry Pie Day

Healthy Snacking

1/2 cup blueberries contains:

  • 24% DV Vitamin C
  • 25% DV Manganese
  • 36% DV Vitamin K
  • 14% DV Fiber

Blueberry Freezer Jam

Use fresh or frozen berries to make this quick freezer jam. Crush berries and sugar together in a heavy saucepan. Place over a medium burner and bring to a boil. Cook for 20 to 30 minutes until thickened, stirring frequently. Spoon into a jar and cover with a lid. Store in the refrigerator for 3 weeks or freezer for 12 months.

Blueberry Jam

Blueberry Jam. image source

Will you start planting blueberries around the homestead now? Let us know below in the comments!

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Put those berries to good use! Get ideas here: Healthy Blueberry Muffin Recipe

Blueberry Muffin Recipe

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