blueberry for Vancouver

Discussion in 'Fruit and Vegetable Gardening' started by Helen Leung, Jun 19, 2006.

  1. Helen Leung

    Helen Leung Active Member 10 Years

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    What is your favourite blueberry variety? I'm looking for an early, mid and a late season bush to extend the harvest season. Height is not a matter since this will be a new bed and possiblely grown along the fence.

    Also, how do you keep the birds from eating all the berries? Do you build a structure to put netting over? These bushes will be put in the front of the house so whatever structure is built would have to be attractive. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

    Thanks!!!

    Helen
     
  2. PNW_D

    PNW_D Member

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    Two I grow in Vancouver (in 15 gallon? containers): Dixi and Toro.

    Years ago when Richmond was mostly blueberry farms, we would often visit my parents' friends who had such a farm. My favourite to both pick and eat was Dixi - 5-6 foot high bush with nice large delicious berries. Mideason.

    As for Toro, this one is a small spreading bush, and as the tag says - very large and firm berries with exceptional colour and flavour. Midseason.
     
  3. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    'November Glow' is a good late-season blueberry. Come to think of it, the row of blueberry bushes at UBC are planted in early to mid to late season order (if one starts from the edge of the strawberry patch), but I can't remember the names of the others.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2016
  4. Debby

    Debby Active Member 10 Years

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    Helen, what blueberry bushes did you end up growing? We have just this year planted Reka, Rancocoas, and Dixi. That's what was available at the nursery when we went shopping.
     
  5. David the other Smith

    David the other Smith New Member

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    DIXI!

    This is my favourite variety by far and I've looked all over to find someone who sells them. Richmond, the Valley, NW Washington (That is a sign of true desperation.) The field that I used to go to, east of Blundell and Shell, was bought by an overseas buyer who plotted them under. Apparently only processors get them now.

    Can anyone lead me to someone that grows and sells Dixi?

    On a related topic, our city has become one of the absolute best food cities in the world. We know this. Some New Yorkers come here to eat.

    With all of this attention to variety, no one has pointed out to the public that there is indeed more than one kind of blueberry. I think that the opening days for various varieties should be posted, like fine wines...well, fine berries with subtle differences in flavour. The BC Blueberry Council doesn't think it's worth their time.

    David Smith, Vancouver
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 4, 2016
  6. vitog

    vitog Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    I bought a Dixi blueberry bush at Gardenworks in Burnaby some time ago; I don't know if they still carry that variety. My most productive bush (of about 10 varieties) is Blue Crop, but Dixi is also very good. Cedar Rim in Langley carries Blue Crop and lots of other varieties, but I didn't see Dixi listed.
     
  7. Margot

    Margot Generous Contributor 10 Years

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    Even though many blueberries are self-pollinating to some degree, it is recommended to plant at least 2 cultivars that bloom at the same time to get more and larger fruit. Proximity is important for cross-pollination so the bushes should be within 5 feet of each other.

    There's a good list of blueberry varieties for the Vancouver area in BCLiving: B.C.'s Best Berries | BCLiving
     
  8. David the other Smith

    David the other Smith New Member

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    I want to thank both of you for replying.

    Margot, the article was interesting. If I weren't in a landless situation, there would indeed be blueberry bushes on my land. In fact, in 1978, I bought a house in Richmond near No. 4 Road because of the 400+ blueberry bushes on it - the house was a secondary consideration.

    So I am reduced to trying to find a pound (exorbitant prices will be considered) of Dixi to try to impress someone who I have converted into a connoisseuse from an "What do you mean that there is more than one kind of blueberry?" person. vitog, is there pity in your heart (how's that for catering to the lowest emotion?)?!

    BTW, I found a very large combination of 3 fields at 6440 No. 4 that is allowing u-pick for $1.50 a pound. A few varieties. 2 caveats: take your own container or else you will be charged $2 for a box; she doesn't let you see the scale, so eat a lot of them while you are picking. Or else $20/box for either Blue Crop or Duke, the latter which I consider to be insipid.

    I feel that I have intruded into the wrong forum since I am looking for finished product rather than plants, so if anyone can suggest another place, I will accept all suggestions with thanks.
     
  9. Daniel Mosquin

    Daniel Mosquin Paragon of Plants UBC Botanical Garden Forums Administrator Forums Moderator 10 Years

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    That's a real shame. People get so excited about learning about the different kinds of cultivars of apples at our Apple Festival. In my perfect world, the same would be true for blueberries, raspberries, strawberries, peaches, etc. Not just because of the food uses that some might be better for than others, but because all of the lineages have a history.

    Perfectly acceptable to ask here. Wish I knew to be able to help.
     
  10. chimera

    chimera Well-Known Member 10 Years

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    Seems odd that she doesn't let you see the scale, maybe just too awkward. Maybe if you asked to be weighed before and after picking she would show you the scale :)
    A local grower on Hallert Rd. in Matsqui sells organic blueberries and has 15 varieties. She was charging 2.00 lb. u-pick or 3.75 lb. picked, about a month ago. Sells frozen ones , too.
    Some roadside sellers are charging 2.00 lb.
    There are ads on Craigslist for u-pick, one as low as .45 lb for weekend picking.
    Any I've tried this year in the retail produce places, so far, don't seem to have much flavour.
     
    Last edited: Aug 8, 2016
  11. vitog

    vitog Rising Contributor 10 Years

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    David, all of the berries on my Dixi blueberry bush have been harvested; the same will probably be true for commercial growers in the Fraser Valley. So you may have a difficult time finding anyone selling that variety, unless someone has some in storage.
     
  12. David the other Smith

    David the other Smith New Member

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    Oh drat! I thought that they were a late berry and that there was still time. At this point, I'm ready to look for someone that can sell to me next year.
     
  13. David the other Smith

    David the other Smith New Member

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    Craigslist? I've never used it, so didn't consider it. This is a valuable hint. Thanks!
     
  14. chimera

    chimera Well-Known Member 10 Years

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