dried up blueberry plant twigs = dead?

MLMIBMarch 3, 2011

some of my new blueberry plants twigs are looking shriveled and can snap easily, I'm wondering if this means it's dead/dying and if I should exchange it at home depot since I just bought it or if it is just a normal thing because it's not spring.

Thanks for the help

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riverman1

Sounds like they are dead. You can use a small knife or your fingernail to scrape the surface of the branch. If it is alive you will find a green cambium layer below the outer surface. If its not green, its dead. You can also just clip the end off the limb and look at the cut, is it green?

A few small branches being dead with a new plant is common and nothing to be concerned about, just trim them off. If some of the main branches are dead on the plant then you have reason to be worried.

RM

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 10:03PM
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ericwi

Dormant blueberry shrubs look to be alive, even though there are no green leaves. The bark will be colored red in places, on the newer shoots, and the buds will be swollen a bit. If the plant looks to be dried out and dead, it very likely is. My experience with blueberries is that they don't recover from this type of neglect.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 7:46PM
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MLMIB

so the top 1/3 seems to be dead in that case. Related, do you need to wait until after the last frost for planting blueberry plants or can they handle a few light frosts?

thank you for the answers and help

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 8:34PM
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ericwi

Blueberry shrubs can be transplanted as soon as the soil can be worked. An early spring planting time will give the roots a chance to get established before the shrub leafs out.

    Bookmark   March 5, 2011 at 12:15AM
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