Blueberry Bush Care in Michigan

wmuav8tor(zone 5/6, Michigan)March 6, 2013

Hello, I posted this in another forum last night but have not received any responses yet so I figured i'd post it here too.

I just bought 2 blueberry bushes, one Blueray and one pink lemonade one. I have 2 questions.

I am planting them in 4 gallon pots, it says the plants can be planted outside in March in my zone, so would it be safe to plant them and immediately move the pots outside even though its currently snowing or should I wait until it warms up a bit before I move them outside? If its safe to move them outside do I have to harden them off like you do when moving regular houseplants outside in the spring? Its supposed to be in the upper 30's next week.

Both plants have leaves on them but the instructions say to cut the branches back to half length before planting. If I do that all the current leaves will be cut off, should I really trim it back that far or should I leave it so that it keeps its currently open leaves?

Thanks for the help!

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Bradybb WA-Zone8

wmuav8tor,
If they are put in an enclosed area,the ideal temperature should be between 32-45F.They can be left outside if it doesn't get extremely cold.Snow won't hurt them.
Personally I don't prune them that much,only if there are any crossing,diseased or dead branches and usually start after five years of age.At that time,cut out about two of the oldest canes at the plant's base. Brady

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 8:57PM
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wmuav8tor(zone 5/6, Michigan)

So if I put them in the enclosed patio they should be fine until it starts to get warmer out? It gets down to about 20 at the lowest right now but usually stays closer to 30's at night. Usually its a few degrees warmer in the patio too since its enclosed so it retains some heat from the day. Cool, I just wont prune it now then, I really didn't want to cut all those leaves off ;)

Thanks for the response!

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 9:14PM
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Bradybb WA-Zone8

As long as there aren't any huge temperature fluctuations,so that flowers start growing and then it gets cold,like 25F.Other than that,they should do fine. Brady

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 9:25PM
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wmuav8tor(zone 5/6, Michigan)

Great, thanks for your help :)

    Bookmark   March 6, 2013 at 9:31PM
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