I can’t consider something extra pleasant than contemporary picked blueberries.
And If I’m being trustworthy, I grow to be so excited for contemporary berries every summer time that I’ve a tough time ready for them to completely ripen.
Whereas it might be tempting to choose them as quickly as they seem, exercising restraint till the time is correct will end in larger, extra flavorful berries.
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Learn on to learn to harvest completely ripe blueberries.
There isn’t a lot to harvesting blueberries. For my part, the wait is by far essentially the most difficult half!
Persistence Is Key
It takes two or three years from planting time earlier than a shrub is mature sufficient to supply a full crop.
For the primary season after planting, pluck off the flowers as they seem. This may encourage the plant to pay attention its vitality on development and root growth.
In the course of the second season, you may harvest the fruits sparingly, however it’s nonetheless a good suggestion to choose off not less than half of the flowers to advertise development.
By the third season, go away all of the flowers on the shrub and luxuriate in a full harvest!
Whereas it might be powerful to attend so lengthy for the primary full harvest, you may be rewarded with more healthy, extra strong crops, and thus bigger yields down the street.
It’s advisable to plant multiple shrub to enhance yields and lengthen the harvest season.
Whereas some cultivars are self-fertile, cross pollination will encourage a a lot larger crop of bigger berries. Select two completely different varieties with related bloom instances for finest outcomes.
When you have the house for greater than two, I like to recommend planting a pair every of early, midseason, and late season varieties. This manner, you should have contemporary fruit obtainable for for much longer every summer time!
For tips about choosing cultivars, take a look at this text on prime blueberry varieties for residence harvests.
I do know it might be tempting, however attempt to restrain your self from selecting the fruit too early within the season.
For the juiciest, sweetest berries, wait till they flip deep blue in coloration, and look plump and full.
Relying on the place you reside, and the cultivars that you’ve planted, this could occur any time from late Might by way of mid-August.
Pink blueberries, such ‘Pink Lemonade’ which is obtainable from Nature Hills Nursery, will likely be agency, deep pink in coloration, and style candy when ripe, sometimes in mid to late summer time.
In the event you choose ones that also have a tinge of purple or purple, they may proceed to ripen off the shrub, although they won’t grow to be any sweeter.
So in the event you don’t like bitter berries, it’s best to attend till they’re fully blue earlier than harvesting. Fruits which are nonetheless inexperienced or white is not going to proceed to ripen as soon as picked.
This may be difficult to do when you’ve got birds or different animals feeding in your crop. Learn our information on defending your berries from birds for extra particulars.
There aren’t any particular tips to harvesting. With a basket on the prepared, gently roll every berry off the stem together with your fingers.
When ripe, they are often picked simply with out resistance. Gather all of the fruits that you simply don’t “style check” first.
I all the time attempt to restrain myself from consuming all of them instantly, however it’s not a simple process!
Eat the berries straight away (my most well-liked methodology) or you may refrigerate them in an open container for a few week.
Refrigerated, they may preserve longer in the event you wait till simply earlier than consuming to scrub them.
They will additionally simply be frozen or dried for later use.
To freeze, gently wash below cool working water after which allow them to sit a strainer or colander till they’re fully dry.
Unfold them out in a single layer on a baking sheet, ensuring no berries are touching, and place within the freezer.
As soon as they’re fully frozen, after a couple of hours, switch to an hermetic freezer-safe bag or container. These will preserve for one to 2 years.
My household eats frozen blueberries virtually day by day in smoothes or our morning oatmeal.
I significantly love this deliciously creamy berry date smoothie on our sister web site, Foodal.
You may also dry the fruit by baking it in an oven set to the bottom temperature for 3 hours, or in a dehydrator set on low for 18 hours.
Absolutely dried, they are going to be shrunken and crisp with a stronger taste. Retailer in a cabinet in an hermetic container for as much as six months.
Unsure what to do with dried berries? You’ll be able to add them to do-it-yourself path combine for an energizing snack, or I wish to bake them into bread and muffins.
This recipe for complete wheat pecan bread with dried blueberries, additionally from Foodal, is a scrumptious approach to make use of homegrown dried fruits!
So Juicy and Candy
Harvesting blueberries is extremely straightforward, and by following the straightforward suggestions above you may take pleasure in a harvest that’s larger, juicier, and sweeter than ever!
What are your tips to harvesting good blueberries? Share your suggestions within the feedback beneath!
And if you wish to study extra about rising blueberries, take a look at these guides subsequent: