The sweet and nutritious blueberries are a superfood that’s extremely beneficial to you. They are low in calories but high in vitamins and minerals, such as vitamins C, K, and manganese.
What’s more, they contain more antioxidants than any other fruit and vegetable. Antioxidants prevent free radical damage which causes premature aging and many diseases such as cancer.
Anthocyanins are a group of flavonoids which are probably responsible for most of its health benefits.
Moreover, they prevent cholesterol in the blood from damaging, once again thanks to the antioxidant content. Blueberries help reduce blood pressure, especially in obese people and post-menopausal women.
One study showed that anthocyanins reduce the cardiovascular risk as well as the risk of heart attack by 32%. And, as we mentioned, blueberries are loaded with this type of antioxidants which are also related to improvement in insulin resistance. So, they support the heart and diabetes management.
Other research suggests they help improve memory and maintain brain function.
Last, but not least, this fruit might help reduce muscle damage after a strenuous workout and relieve urinary tract infections.
We believe these are enough reasons for you to start growing blueberries in your own backyard. However, you should wait until early spring to plant them.
Everything You Need to Know About Growing Blueberries
Find the Right Place
Blueberries require a lot of sunlight and high-quality soil, so have this in mind when choosing a place for them in your garden. The soil supports the photosynthesis, while the sunlight enables the process to happen. Plants grow during photosynthesis, so this is important.
Also, the raised beds are ideal if you have a large garden, enabling the water to run throughout the soil and provide moisture. A patio container is a good idea if you live in a flat.
Give your blueberry bush enough space to grow, or around six feet. Also, leave 2.5-3 feet distance between one and another bush, if you grow more.
Use your hands to ruffle the roots and place them in the soil, adding more of it around them. Then, pat down the top layer of soil, and water it. The perfect soil for growing blueberries has 5.0 pH value. One more thing, it should be well drained.
Use sawdust for best results. But, you can also use rind mulch, grass clipping, pine bark, or acid planting mix. Place two to three wreaths to keep the soil hydrated and stop weeds from growing.
Do not use rinds or sawdust from redwood and cedar tree. You should do this once a year.
Prune the bush regularly once it begins to thrive. This will support the growth of the strongest branches, and the bush itself. Also, it’ll ensure the fruits grow large, by preventing over-fruiting.
Once they occur, remove most of the flower blooms. In addition, use scissors or small clippers to eliminate the dead branches.
The pruning of your blueberry bush should involve removing the short, discolored, and dead branches, as well as low growths around the bottom.
Prevent damage by using organic fertilizers which are non-toxic and environment-friendly. What’s more, they will fertilize the bush for a longer time. Do this in the early spring and one more time after the pruning process.
Grow your blueberry bush in this way, and you’ll have it for at least 40 years. What’s more, if you plant 2 different varieties, you’ll enable cross-pollination to increase the yield.