Deciduous, Edible fruit, Shrubs
Native to eastern North America; for ornamental species, see Vaccinium.
Most blueberries grown for fruit are also handsome shrubs suitable for hedges or shrub borders. Leaves, to 3 in. long, are bronze when new, maturing to dark green, turning scarlet or yellow in fall. Tiny, urn-shaped spring flowers are white or pinkish. Summer fruit is decorative.
Blueberries thrive under conditions that suit rhododendrons and azaleas, to which they are related. They need cool, moist, well-drained acid soil (pH 4.5–5.5). Where soil isn’t acidic enough, either create proper conditions in garden soil or grow in containers filled with acidic potting mix.
For more information about how to grow blueberries, go to How to Choose and Grow Blueberries.
These selections of Vaccinium virgatum (V. ashei) are native to the southeastern U.S. and can be grown in mild-winter areas from California to the Gulf Coast if given acid soil conditions. Unlike most blueberries, these tolerate heat. Often taller and rangier than highbush plants, growing to more than 6 ft. high and wide, they ripen large, light blue berries from May to July. Quality does not equal that of highbush blueberries, but it is still quite good. Plants have good fall color, even in warm years.
Some popular varieties include ‘Bluebelle’, ‘Southland’, and ‘Tifblue’.
These selections of Vaccinium virgatum (V. ashei) are native to the southeastern U.S...
Hybrids between Vaccinium darrowii and V. corymbosum, these grow to about 6 ft. tall...
Hardy to –15°F/–26°C. Hybrids between Mollis azaleas and R. viscosum