j3707
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Location: Pacific Northwest, Zone 8, 48" annual rainfall, dry summers.

Most ornamental blueberry bush?

Any opinions on what variety blueberry (northern highbush) is the most ornamental/attractive?
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tomc
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Re: Most ornamental blueberry bush?

How alkaline is your soil? Western planting of lowland blueberry can be problematic.

FWIW the tall blueberry are "lowland' blueberry.

Look at amelancher as an alternate.
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applestar
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Re: Most ornamental blueberry bush?

"Highbush" blueberry is "lowland" blueberry? How confusing! But that makes sense since I seem to remember the highbush need more water than the lowbush which are more drought tolerant.... :lol:

I think almost ANY blueberry is attractive in a landscape. Absolutely lovely fall color, dainty blossoms, berries turning from frosty green to magenta to indigo blue.... Only ... That's the not so pretty stage while they are covered in bird netting to protect from catbirds, robins, and mockingbirds, et al.

I have the shrub type amelanchier tomc mentioned and it IS a lovely shrub too.

What is a shrub that would be native to your area? Maybe some kind of viburnum?
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CharlieBear
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Re: Most ornamental blueberry bush?

you appear to be in Washington state. Low bush have a tendency to die off in the winter on the west side of the Cascades. The high bush are generally grown there as well as Oregon. Remember if you want berries you will need 2-3 different varieties and I would not recommend early varieties as may years the bees don't fly that early. Mid to late are the best. They need acidic soil. Do not fertilize in any way the year you plant them. However it is wise to put sulfur around them every 2-3 months throughout the growing season. They also need to be watered regularly until the rains start again in the fall. Modern blueberries are shallow rooted and actually send out most of their new growth late in the season. They like thick acidic mulch like pine needles, sawdust etc. There are a few varieties that have red leaves in the fall. I would suggest you read descriptions if you care about that on nursery sites like Raintree since they are a Washington company, the varieties they list in the northern high bush would be a good place to start

j3707
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Location: Pacific Northwest, Zone 8, 48" annual rainfall, dry summers.

Re: Most ornamental blueberry bush?

Thanks everyone. I like the idea of planting some serviceberry, it's on my list for the forest garden.

My current project is creating a small orchard in my front yard and blueberries are the number one crop. We spend big bucks to stay supplied with blueberries year round in my house!

Highbush blueberries can do quite well in my area. My soil is about 5.5 pH. There is a blueberry farm not too far from us and I don't think he uses much in the way of soil amendments, aside from some sort of fish based fertilizer.

I agree with you applestar...any blueberry would be attractive. I am planting a mix of cultivars, but want the outside row to be the same so they will be flowering, fruiting and changing leaf color at the same time for more visual impact.

After some research, I think I will go with Patriot for the outside row.

By the way, our native "blueberries" are huckleberries. We have a several different kinds. I don't think they would be as productive or as easy to cultivate as a highbush blueberry.
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