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Choosing Blueberry Plants
Last Updated: 10/12/2012
When you decide to grow your own blueberries, you will undoubtedly be wanting maximum yields as quickly as possible, on plants that are going to live for as long as possible.

As we've been growing blueberries for over 60 years and our reputation for quality is un-surpassed anywhere (or so we keep being told!), Here are a few tips for choosing the right plants, wherever you end up buying them from.

When we meet our customers at the many shows that we attend, we are always 2 standard questions.
  • I've got a blueberry and it produces plenty of flowers, but I never get any fruit. What am I doing wrong?
    Answer: Some will tell you that their blueberries are self fertile. Well they an extent and not all varieties can even claim to go that far. We find that roughly half of the feedback we received from customers with a single plant is positive, the other half experience low yields. We always suggest buying more than one plant to be on the safe side. The other advantage of this is that you can buy an early and a mid season variety to extend your fruiting season. ALL blueberries flower at roughly the same time, although some will start earlier and some will finish later than others.
    Thats one of the reasons why we discount our multibuys so much, to encourage you to have more than one!
  • The other question, or rather, comment we receive is along the lines of "we have a blueberry plant that was bought from a reader offer 2 or 3 years ago and its dying."
    Answer: Well we actually reply with a question first. We always ask "Was it a variety called Top Hat by any chance?".
    The customer is always amazed that we seem to know their variety without asking for more information.
    OK heres the explanation. Top Hat is without question the most un-reliable, short lived, fussy variety on the planet today. To the extent that we refuse to have it on the nursery. Yes, its true that some people seem to have success with it, but that number is relatively low, from our experience.
    Its a variety that the big mail order companies will push like mad because its cheap for them to produce and they can maximise their profits, sometimes as high as £12.99 for a 9cm plant.
    We'll end that rant with a simple 'BUYER BEWARE'.

    Other things to look out for.

    Look for the size of pot which your plant is in at the point of sale. In general, avoid 9cm pots, unless you're happy to wait a long time for any substantial crop. By a long time, we mean 3 to 5 years, although a small handful is possible in 2 years.
    Buy the biggest plants you can afford. They'll pay for themselves much faster. As an indication, as I write this, The Daily Mail are offering a 9cm plant for £9.99. Our 2 and 3 litre plants with fruit on for this year are currently £12.50

    Does shape matter?
    No, not really. If you see a blueberry thats not looking nice and even shaped, but the price is good, then buy it! Blueberries respond so well to pruning that you'll have a fantastic bush in a couple of seasons anyway! Check out our pruning pages for more info on this. CLICK HERE

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