Highbush Blueberry (Vaccinium Corymbosum)
Vaccinium is the name given by the Romans to blueberries and cranberries. The genus contains some 130 species distributed in the northern hemisphere from the Arctic Circle to the mountains of tropical regions. They are mostly low or tall shrubs, very occasionally small trees, some deciduous, others evergreen. The leaves are simple, alternate, usually entire or serrate. Theare borne singly or in racemes and the corolla is generally trumpet-like. The fruits are berries, usually edible.
The highbush blueberry, native to North America, is a deciduous shrub growing to a height of 4m (13 ft). The white to pinkish flowers appear in May and June. The fruits are reddish-brown at first, bluish-black and pruinose when ripe.
Propagation is by means of seeds, which after removing the fleshy covering are stored for the winter at a temperature of about 7° C (45° F) and sown early in spring. Blueberry may also be increased by half-ripe softwood cuttings taken in late July and inserted in a frame where they take root within four to six weeks. It requires a light, best of all sandy, humusysupplied with adequate moisture; an addition of peat is all to the good. It does not tolerate lime or the application of strong fertilizers. The highbush blueberry is cultivated primarily for its edible fruit. In parks and gardens it is planted in groups and in rows.