European blueberry - 10 seeds

European blueberry - 10 seeds


A blueberry by any other name is just as sweet, especially if it is Vaccinium myrtillus, commonly called bilberry or European blueberry - bilberry - wimberry - blue whortleberry. Unlike American blueberries that come from hybrid cultivars, bilberries most often grow in the original, wild form which has one fruit per twig rather than clusters. You can plant bilberries in your back yard in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 3 through 8, as a fruit crop or a ground cover. The bilberry prefers a cooler climate; in warmer zones, take care to keep the plant from getting too hot.

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You need a grouse moor rather than a garden to grow bilberries for regular puddings, because each bush carries only a couple of handfuls of berries in season. That said, if you can locate a bilberry supplier (don't dig any up from the wild!) you'll need to grow several bushes together for cross-pollination. Plant bushes in early spring after the last frost. Position in damp, acidic, well-draining soil in full sun or partial shade - raised beds are ideal.

Bilberries need little attention. However, they will benefit from an annual prune after the last harvest, and a springtime mulch. They do like to be kept moist but they mustn't become waterlogged.