Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Planting Blueberries!

Last summer we went with a friend to pick blueberries in North GA. It was such a delightful trip, and we couldn't believe how many delicious berries we gathered! The berry bushes were absolutely laden with plump blue goodness. This got us thinking. . . we should plant blueberries, too! We thought about planting them at our house, but decided a better location was at my in-laws' property instead. I did a little research, and decided on some Rabbiteye blueberry varieties.
From Planting Blueberries 4/27/09

Time got away from me, and lo it was April before we got around to purchasing our blueberry plants and going to Grandma & Grandpa's for planting. That's OK, though- we were still within acceptable time for planting blueberries here in GA. It was a perfect setup: I did the research, purchasing and direction while Billy and his brother did all the digging and planting!

After I selected a nice sunny, well-drained spot on a gentle slope, we marked where we wanted the plants to go. Then, Billy and his brother set to work digging out the dense Georgia red clay.
From Planting Blueberries 4/27/09

The clay we found there wasn't quite as hard as some I've seen, but it still needed some good topsoil and compost mixed in.
From Planting Blueberries 4/27/09

The great Gimli McGuinness, our cairn terrier, was happily on hand to supervise. It was a perfect day for him, running free outside to get filthy. (And yes, he needs grooming- he's scraggly!)
From Planting Blueberries 4/27/09

After a hard day's work there were 7 blueberry bushes comfortably ensconced in their new home. Billy put stakes and string around them so Grandpa wouldn't accidentally mow them down.
From Planting Blueberries 4/27/09

Finally I contributed a little manual labor, to spread the mulch: lots of nice, acidic pinestraw to protect the plants, help discourage weeds, and hold moisture. (Blueberry plants like an acidic pH in their soil.) There is no shortage of pinestraw on that property!
From Planting Blueberries 4/27/09

Just as I was spreading the last wheelbarrow-full of pinestraw, big fat raindrops began splashing down. A short cloudburst of a thunderstorm gave the new bushes a nice drink of water and then moved on, leaving a breathtaking sherbet ice cream sunset to polish off the day.
From Planting Blueberries 4/27/09

Compare the two small sunset photos carefully, and you might notice a flash of lightning caught in the first one- it's the whitish blob behind the trees in the lower left part of the picture.

Now we look forward to many summers of blueberry harvests ahead!


Unknown said...

That was really hard ground. Or I'm a wimp, my back hurt so bad the next day!

Bird said...

That clay does look like heavy going... but blueberries... mmmmm!

I'll go and enbigify those pictures right now to look for the lightning, that sunset is spectacular even without.

Five Bears A-Blogging said...

Gimli McGuinness? OMG, I'm gasping I love that name so!


Kit said...

@ Billy- Yeah, I guess it's easy for ME to say it didn't look THAT hard- I didn't do any of the digging! I'll be happy to give you another backrub. . .

@ Bird- I know, blueberries! I can't wait.

@ Mo- Hey! Well, it just seemed to fit. :) I like it, too.