Rabbiteye Blueberries

I got a lot accomplished yesterday, of course it’s never enough though. All the tomato beds are now mulched with several inches of old hay (I just hope I’m not pulling weeds from it next spring). I thinned the comfrey and not only set up another 5’x5′ bed but planted a few roots alongside the apple trees as well. To thin the comfrey I just stuck a shovel down into the plant and separated the root mass just like I would do a lily. I did a lot of planning and dreaming, too.

I’ve decided to set out 9 Rabbiteye Blueberries bushes. Heres a little I’ve learned about them … Blueberries like an acidic soil with a pH between 4.0-5.0. Always plant several varieties to ensure good pollination. We’ll plant Climax (an early bloomer), TifBlue (a mid-season bloomer), and Centurion (a late bloomer). Set plants out in fall. When planting, dig the hole twice the circumference of the pot the plant is in and just a little deeper than the pot is tall. Add peat and/or a finely ground pine bark back into the hole mixed with a little soil then water the hole. Set plant at the same depth it is in the pot so the top of the pot’s soil is even with the ground surface. Pile soil back into hole pressing down as you go. Do not heap soil up around base of plant. Cut off 1/3 of the plant’s height. Do not fertilize the first year. Mulch with pine straw or bark. Supply adequate moisture.

We’ll set out our blueberries this month or next. They’ll be going into three 3’x50′ beds. There is a two foot path between each bed. We’ll space our plants ten feet apart along each row making sure to stagger the planting to allow plenty of walking space between the plants. For example, the first plant in the first row will be planted five feet from the end of the row, the first plant in the second row will be planted ten feet from the end. Nine plants! I’m considering bee balm and spearmint as ground cover under the bushes, and maybe white clover in the paths. Hmm?

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