Blueberries are extremely healthy and tasty fruits, which can be consumed raw, added to pies, smoothies, or squeezed in your juice. They offer numerous health benefits, including:
- They prevent blood cholesterol damage.
- They protect the function of the brain and prevent memory loss due to the high antioxidant content.
- They are rich in nutrients but low in calories, as a cup provides 3.6 grams of dietary fiber, 24% of your recommended daily allowance of Vitamin C and 36% of Vitamin K.
- They have been found to reduce blood pressure and lower cardiovascular risk factors. One study has shown that the daily intake of 50 grams of these fruits for 8 weeks led to a 4-6% drop in blood pressure.
- They are rich in antioxidants which prevent the signs of aging, damage to the DNA, and cancer. A study has shown that the daily consumption of blueberry juice lowered the effect of DNA damage by 20%.
You can now grow unlimited amounts of these beneficial fruits at home, and this is how:
Find The proper place
Search for the perfect spot for your blueberry bush, as it needs a high-quality soil and a lot of sunlight. The sunlight will provide the needed conditions for photosynthesis, which is vital for its growth, and the soil will support this process. If you have a large garden, the raised beds are perfect, as the water will run throughout the soil, giving the needed moisture. If you live in a flat, you should purchase a patio container.
This bush requires up to 6 feet of space to expand naturally. If you grow more bushes, they should be at 2.5 to 3 feet distance in between.
The Planting Process
In most world countries, it is best to plant the blueberry bush in fall or spring. Ruffle the roots with the hands, and put it in the soil, add more soil around them, and pat down the top soil layer. Then, water it well as it is shallow-rooted, and needs to be hydrated. The soil should be well drained. The ideal soil for this bush is acidic, with 5.0 pH value.
For best effects, use sawdust, but you can also use pine bark, rind mulch, acid trip or grass clipping. Apply 2-4 wreaths to preserve the moisture of the soil and prevent the growth of weeds. Repeat this once a year, and remember not to use rinds or sawdust from cedar or redwood tree.
When the bush starts to thrive, start pruning it on a regular basis, as it will allow the strongest branches to grow the most vigorously and it will support the healthy growth of the plant. This will support the optimal growth of the blueberry bush and avoid over-fruiting, so the fruits will remain large. When they appear, detach most of the flower blooms. The dead branches should be removed using a pair of scissors or small clippers.
When it comes to the pruning of the blueberry bush, remember to:
-Eliminate the low growths around the bottom of the bush, clean dead wood, chop away short or discolored branches, and clear a half or a third of the wood of it.
You should always use organic fertilizers in order to prevent damage of the bushes. They also fertilize the plant for a longer time and are environment- friendly and non-toxic. Pick the early spring season for fertilization, when the leaves are breaking from dormancy, and once more after the process of pruning.
If grown in this way, the bushes will live and produce for at least 4-5 decades. Furthermore, you can also try to plant at least two different varieties of the fruits for cross pollination to boost the yield. These tips will be of great help if you want to grow your own blueberry bushes at home and enjoy the taste and all the health benefits of these amazing fruits.