store potted blueberry plant indoors?

matthew18(5)November 21, 2011

I have a potted blueberry plant that I purchased late last fall. Should I store it indoors for the winter? Is having it outdoors safe in Z5 when it gets to below zero? I'm not sure what to do about planting the new one. I hesitate to plant the new one in my chosen permanant location. I intend to plant in the location of a currently diseased blueberry plant. That said, I think I have a diseased plant(leaf or branch blight) that I need to pull this spring. I'm not sure if it is going to survive or not?? I have prunned the dieased branchs to a point where I think I have it under control..I hope. Any ideas on how to store the new plant for the winter? What about planting the planting location?

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Hello matthew18,
Is it a Northern Highbush?Probably so and about what age?It can most likely go into the ground,pot and all with some leaves, burlap or something put around it to insulate.Just be sure it doesn't get too dry.About the only indoor place should be a cool garage,because it needs to get a certain amount of chill hours for next year.Brady

    Bookmark   November 21, 2011 at 11:33AM
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You have several options with potted nursery stock at this time of year.

You can go ahead and plant it in its permanent site, being sure to water well, then mulch pretty deeply around the roots to avoid the freeze-thaw cycle that sometimes pops plants from the ground.

You could heel it in somewhere in a sheltered location in the pot, digging the hole deep enough to bury the container to the rim, and then firming the excess soil around the pot, again watering and mulching well.

Finally, you can also overwinter in a cold but not harshly cold environment -- somewhere the roots won't freeze to the point of damage, like an attached garage with some heat. I've overwintered various dormant plants with way with success, you still need to check for water a few times, and if the location warms too early and the plant breaks dormancy ahead of time, be prepared to nurse the new growth through with a grow light until its safe to put outdoors.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2011 at 11:35AM
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luke_oh(zone 5 NE Ohio)

I'm in zone 5 and overwintered 75 2 yr old BB plants in 1 gal pots by placing them together and covering with composted cow manure about 1/2 way up the plant. Didn't loose any. We also had a lot of snow covering the plants for most of the winter that may have helped insulate them.

    Bookmark   November 21, 2011 at 7:32PM
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