I saw a show on TV last night about wild blueberries. The farmer said "you can't plant them, thy're either there or they're not." Is this true?
I think it is sort of true. Of course, like any plant, it is possible to cultivate or transplant wild blueberries. However, I have found them to be very slow to recover after transplanting, and they require acidic soil. If you have the right soil, it is likely that you already have wild blueberries or huckleberries nearby, because they are widespread and in many places very common. If they aren't present in your immediate area, that is a good indication that you may not have the right soil. So, in that sense it is sort of true that "they're either there or they're not."
I guess he means they are tricky to transplant ... and they are. I have successfully moved a few of them in my time, but not all of them that I tried.
And I don't think I put them in enough sun to get the necessary blooms so ... so far I haven't had any fruit!
The wild bluberries on my property are tricky growing right where they came up in the woods, esh ga. Some years they make lots of fruit, other years very little. They bloom while it's still winter, usually in February, so it may be late freezes that offs the blooms.
I believe that the site, soil, and sunlight may be the biggest factors. A few years ago, I dug up one of the lowbush blueberries and put it in a medium sized pot with a lot of the surrounding soil. It has survived a good three years so far in a pot.
I have kept the few trees and native wildflowers (that I took from my parent's property) in pots for years while waiting to buy land of my own. As I mentioned in a separate post, I finally bought a house and land. So, this spring I'll find out how well the blueberry does in the ground. I think I found an appropriate site based on some of the companion plants I've seen grow with the lowbush blueberries.
Of course, if you don't have the right site, it is not worth transplanting them. Years ago my sister brought some from my uncle's land. She planted it in rich soil without enough sun. It didn't make it. Looking back I can see why.
Hope this helps.
I transplanted a native in among my cultivated blueberries and it seems to be doing well. The reason I did this is to have it cross pollinate with the cultivated varieties. I also have successfully transplanted some of the native low bush blueberries, and they are slowly spreading. I think if they are given the proper growing conditions, that is, a very acidic soil, they will eventually take hold. They probably won't rival the cultivated varieties for heavy fruit production, but they are a nice addition nevertheless.