The modern blueberry is a 20th-century invention. Before the 1900s, the only way to enjoy these North American natives was to find them in the wild. Then, scientists started to unlock the secrets of cultivating blueberries, and we’re glad they did! Planting And Growing Blueberries!
Planting And Growing Blueberries
Blueberries are also low in calories. Fewer than 100 for a full cup. They owe their distinct hue to their high anthocyanin content. Which gives certain fruits and veggies their deep blues and reds.
North America is still the leading producer of this beloved blue fruit, accounting for up to 90% of the world’s supply. The berry is celebrated throughout July — the peak of its harvest — during National Blueberry Month.
High In Antioxidants
Blueberries are one of the best sources of antioxidants. One study in China compared the antioxidant capacity of blueberries/ Blackberries and strawberries and found that blueberries not only contained the highest total antioxidant capacity. But also contained more of many specific types of antioxidants, including phenols, flavonoids and anthocyanins.
Wild blueberries are especially high in antioxidants. A study in the British Journal of Nutrition, for example, found that supplementing participants with wild blueberry powder increased serum antioxidant status by 8.5 percent after just one hour.
Lower Bad Cholesterol And Treat Diabetes
Blueberries juice and extract improve insulin sensitivity. Blueberry is a high fiber food that is an essential part of the diabetic diet and helps lower the blood sugar levels.
The high fiber content and abundant antioxidants in blueberries help dissolve the LDL (bad) cholesterol. This makes blueberries an ideal dietary supplement to cure many heart diseases, while also strengthening the cardiac muscles. They also contain potassium, calcium, and magnesium, which help in reducing blood pressure.
How To Plant Blueberry Bushes
Select a sunny, sheltered spot. While blueberries are tolerant of shade, better crops are obtained in the sun. Blueberries thrive in soil that is acidic. The soil pH should ideally be between 4 and 5.
Soil can be acidified by mixing a small amount of granulated sulfur into the soil several months before planting. Peat moss, as well as pine bark or needles, are also good additions that will help acidify your soil.
The blueberry is a shallow-rooted plant. Therefore, it requires a soil that holds moisture, but also drains well and doesn’t stay wet. Mix organic matter into the soil before you set your blueberry bushes.
Bushes should be planted as early in the spring as possible. If available, 1- to 3-year-old plants are a good choice. Be sure to go to a reputable nursery. Dig holes about 20 inches deep and 18 inches wide.
Space bushes about 5 feet apart in a row, with at least 8 feet between rows. Prepare a planting mixture of 2 parts loam and one part oak leaf mold, peat moss, aged sawdust, or compost, and place a layer of this mixture in the bottom of the hole. Set the bush in the hole with its roots spread out.
Don’t plant the bush any deeper than it grew in the pot. Pack the hole tightly with soil. Apply fertilizer one month after planting, not at the time of planting. Apply ½ ounce of a 10-10-10 fertilizer in a band around the plant 6 to 12 inches from the crown.
Uses Of Blueberries
Blueberries could practically be an addition to any food to impart a sweet-tart taste. They could be used as toppings or be added to various dishes like over baked foods, oatmeal, yogurts, pancakes, smoothies or salads.