Duke, Toro, Reka, Sunshine Blue, Chippewa, Bluecrop, Chandler and Legacy. If you recognize these names you might be salivating at the thought of all the delicious varieties of blueberry plants that grow here in the Northwest. Now is a good time to shop for plants because with ripening berries you can sample the fruit from different varieties to discover your favorite. These taste tests can reveal subtle differences in flavors, ranging from mild to sweet to tart. Plants also produce fruit at different times, early, mid-season and late. It’s good to buy at least two different varieties to help with pollination and fruit production. If the berries will be used all at once, for preserving or freezing, try varieties that bear at the same time. But if you want fresh berries for as long as possible, try planting early, mid and late fruiting varieties together in the garden to extend the harvest. Plant in loose, well-drained soil, free of weeds and with an adequate supply of moisture for successful growth and feed with an acidic fertilizer. Blueberry plants range in size from only 12 inches tall (Burgundy Wild Lowbush) to 3-4 feet which are great in containers (Sunshine Blue) to six feet tall (Reka) so there is something that can fit in every garden. I have four blueberry plants, all growing well in containers.
This is my favorite Blueberry Muffin recipe (I like the cinnamon!)
2 cups flour
3/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1 cup milk
1/2 cup melted butter or vegetable oil
1 cup blueberries
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Mix wet ingredients first. Add dry ingredients and mix until just moistened, then gently fold in blueberries. Bake in muffin pan for 16 to 20 minutes. Makes 10 large muffins. From Make-A-Mix cookbook by Eliason, Harward and Westover, 1995)
This site: http://southernfood.about.com/od/blueberryrecipes/Blueberry_Recipes.htm has lots of other delicious ways to prepare this amazing little fruit. I’m looking forward to the blueberry pizza.