Site selection - Select a site that has full sun most of the day for best results. For climates with high summer temperatures with multiple days over 36 degrees ensure plants receive shade from the afternoon sun and then move plants back out to full sun for Autumn, Winter and Spring.
For best results PlantNet recommends that Blueberry Burst® be grown in a pot or tub as this gives you more control over the PH, and gives good drainage.
Planting - Potting media should be 50% course pine bark (20mm-25mm in size) and 50% of a premium quaulity Camellia/ Azalea potting mix(Mixed together). For warm dry regions the addition of pine bark may not be necessary, however it is still worth considering to keep a well aeriated pot which will extend the life of your Blueberry in a pot considerably.
Under no circumstances should you tease the roots as this will severely set the bush back. Ensure when planting that the top of the soil of the pot you have purchased remains level with the soil in your pot you are transplanting into.
Why Premium potting mix?
Premium mixes are the first choice when you want the very best for your plants. Premium mixes have greater water-holding capacity, contain added nitrogen, and remain at peak performance for a longer period. They are a worthwhile investment, especially for those superior plants that are important decorative specimens. Premium mixes are identified on the bag by Red Standards Mark ‘ticks’.
Add pine bark to the top of the pot to help protect the surface roots. Blueberries require a PH of 5.0- 5.5.
Most Camellia/ Azalea mixes are in this range. This can be checked if required by purchasing a PH soil test kit from your nearest Garden centre or Hardware store. These are simple to use and are ideal for checking soil PH over your total garden area. Add a good quality 3 month slow release fertiliser to your potting media and mix in well.
This potting media is recommended by PlantNet to help keep the ph down, to give good drainage and to provide an open potting mix for root development. Blueberries produce masses of fine roots which mat together. Without an open potting mix all Blueberry varieties will only have a life of around 2-3 years in pots. This mix will extend the plants life well beyond this.
Both the Azalea/Camelia mix and pine bark are available from most garden centre's and hardware stores.
Fertilising - Use a good 3 month slow release fertilizer or organic fertilizer such as composted cow manure every 3 months and add a good liquid fertiliser with added trace elements every 2- 3 weeks. An addition of 2 teaspoons of Potassium Sulphate every two weeks applied to the potting mix will assist with fruit size. Plant health is very important for best results.
Watering- Because the potting media is free draining, in warm weather plants should be watered every 2 days(Give plants up to 6 months old 1.5 litres and mature plants 2- 3 litres of water per plant or until water dribble's out of the pot base). In Winter this can be reduced by 50%. Do not over water. Avoid watering plants over their foliage fertilizing, as this will help to avoid promoting conditions for leaf fungal diseases.
Pests and Disease's - All Blueberry varieties are susceptible to fungal leaf diseases under high humidity and high rainfall, particularly Blueberry Rust. Apply a good fungicide to protect against this. We recommend Copper Hydroxide(product names include Kocide or Blue shield) Mancozeb based fungicides can be used in dry climates. Do not wait for leaf damage to occur before spraying, as protection is better than cure.
Check for Caterpillar damage on a regular basis and control when necessary.
Monitor for scale insects (The first sign is ant activity in the bushes, as ants tend to foster scales. Pour a small amount of soapy water onto the infected area for control.
Birds and Flying foxes - Cover with netting as soon as young berries appear on the bush.
This variety is an evergreen variety. A good, strong, healthy plant with foliage free from disease is very important to achieve beautiful fruit. Do not allow plants to lose their leaves from poor nutrition or disease.
If the directions are followed above, the home gardener will have a delicious supply of healthy Blueberries.
Watch the video below for further information.