It’s getting to be the time of the year where things are budding out and spring is showing signs of its imminent return. I’ve pruned all the fruit trees (just in time) and at long last I was able to turn my attention to the blueberries. They have been lurking in the back of my mind for some time, occupying that awkward space between guilt and adoration. Guilt, because I planted them at the farm on Miami-Foley four years ago, and have neglected them absolutely since we moved to this new property two years ago. Adoration, because I love blueberries so much: their taste, their cheery fall foliage, their slow and patient growth.
Luckily for me, one of our buddies is a Blueberry Expert who’s worked with them in the horticultural department at Oregon State. She was more than willing to do a work-trade with us, and show me how to move, transplant, and prune them. Here we see EV posing with our berries in the “blueberry rescue vehicle”, AKA my dad’s old blue truck. The truck is significant, too. When I was a kid living in Michigan, dad would take us to pick blueberries in his truck. Now, his truck brings them to us!
When we bought the berries originally, we planted four different types, with the idea that we could see what did well in our area. Also, the four varieties (Earlyblue, Bluecrop, Chandler, and Darrow) have different flowering times, so we though it would be a good way to extend the harvest. We never really had much of a harvest to extend, but the first idea was useful. Turns out, in the years since we planted them, the Bluecrop has grown twice as large as the others. That’s interesting, though EV pointed out it’s not quite enough evidence to plant only Bluecrop, since we haven’t yet seen how it yields. On some varieties, smaller bushes yield better than big ones.