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  • Culling: It's decision time

    The plan is to keep about 60 plants, and to extend the harvest as long as possible, both earlier and later. Plus to have the best tasting berries possible. In my area, there is virtually zero chill hours and a light frost maybe once a decade.

    Since it's been nearly impossible to get hold of any of the good varieties in past years, when I got some, I kept them longer than maybe I should. But access has changed, thank goodness, so I can now get rid of more that are not the best.

    On the chopping block are some duplicates of Star, and Jewel, and Abundance. I've already given a dozen or so to friends. But a dozen more need to go to make room for trialing new varieties.

    Keepers:
    Emerald - plants grow and bear very well here, I like the mild flavor, and they can rebloom and bear at odd times.
    Southmoon - late bearing of extremely good-flavored fruits. One of my favorites, but plants not that vigorous. I currently have a few ripe ones. I want more of these, though chill hours are a bit high for here.
    Sweetcrisp - A keeper. What more can be said? Here, a very long, light fruiting season. Plants healthy, leggy.
    Sharpblue - old variety, but reliable and good flavor. Also later ripening to extend the season. Have given some plants away already.
    Misty - older variety. Good blueberry flavor, reliable here. Have giving some plants away already.
    Biloxi - Zero chill, blooms at odd times to extend season. One bush has had ripe fruit for a month. Not the best, but I keep it for berries out of season when there are no others.
    Jewel - it's a work horse. Flavor not that great however. If some of the new ones pan out, more of the Jewels might have to go.

    New ones I'm trying:
    Snowchaser - FHN source, but seems true to type. First ripe berry from less than a year old plant was exceptional.
    Springhigh - FHN source, plants still very young.
    Scintilla - FHN source. Wills says they don't live very long, but I already had them. We'll see.
    SoCal, zone 10.
    www.ourfigs.com Invite your friends.

  • #2
    Gina:

    Have you tried Sunshine Blue? I know others in SoCal that like it for it's late harvest season and good fruit. I haven't tried it myself.
    Alpine, Texas 4500ft elevation Zone 7
    http://growingfruit.org/

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    • #3
      Yes, I have tried Sunshine Blue. I got a couple plants years ago at HomeDepot. They didn't grow well, and I didn't really like them much. Perhaps I should try them again since I've learned a lot about growing BBs since then. It's also possible those weren't healthy plants to begin with. I did like that they were late - they just didn't taste very good.
      SoCal, zone 10.
      www.ourfigs.com Invite your friends.

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      • #4
        I did the same thing Gina. With the exception of Biloxi I trialled all the same varieties plus many others and I'm down to Springhigh, Emerald and Sweetcrisp. Just recently got rid of sunshine blue. Not because I didn't like it, just not enough room. Making some space for my next addiction, MANGO'S!!!!! It took me about 3 years to finally cull down to what I have now. It's a process and takes a few years to really grasp what the best plants are for your location. I couldn't be happier with the plants I have now. Most all of mine are fully mature now with the exception of 2 sweetcrisp in there 3rd year. I've got 6 sweetcrisp, 2 Emeralds, 1 springhigh and 1 Raven(jury is still out on this one, haven't tasted it yet)

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