About 6 months ago I wrote a post about the best crops to grow in pots and both Mark & L recommended blueberries, so how could I not get some?

I bought 3 plants, but sadly have managed to lose (I suspect removed by a small boy) the tags for them, so beyond knowing one was a Nellie Kelly I don’t know what varieties they are.  The Nellie Kelly and one of the others are evergreen, the 3rd is deciduous.

I potted them up, soon after buying them, into 30cm diameter pots.  Blueberries like acidic soil so I used Ericaceous (Azalea) potting mix.  I will pot them up again this Autumn if it looks like they are running out of room.

Since I bought them both the evergreen ones have put on new growth and in late winter they started flowering.

Many of the flowers had dropped off by mid to late September.  For a while it looked like nothing was happening but by the start of October they had begun swelling.  This is what they looked like yesterday:

 Exciting isn’t it?

The deciduous one is only now reaching the flowering stage.  Strangely it hasn’t regrown its leaves yet.  Not having much experience of blueberries I can only presume this is normal.  This is what it looks like at the moment.

I’m really enjoying watching the blueberries develop.  They might not be quite as impressive as L’s fabulous bananas – check out her post if you haven’t seen banana flowers before – really fascinating.  But if your space and climate aren’t suited to immense herbs like that then blueberries might just be the thing.  They are very, very good for you after all.

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27 Responses to Blueberries

  1. Daphne says:

    I might be putting more blueberries in next year. We have quite a few plants but they are of the low bush kind and they don’t produce much. They are pretty though especially now in the fall when their leaves turn bright red before they fall.

  2. Mike says:

    Those blueberries look fantastic. You have inspired me, now I want to buy an evergreen plant as well and be able to enjoy some blueberries
    So far the only thing I grew with (huge) success is kale. I must admit it has been a pretty easy task as it’s an incredibly resilient vegetable!

    • Liz says:

      Kale is great, easy to grow and nutrious to eat. I reckon blueberries woudl be worth a go – the plants are pretty compact so you wouldn’t need a lot of room.

  3. I didn’t know you could buy evergreen blueberries.
    Is it that you don’t know which is which or can’t remember the names at all? Just thought you may be able to find out from your supplier – if you could remember the names you could find out which was deciduous and which evergreen and bingo!

    • Liz says:

      I’ll probably find the tags eventually. Things like this usually turn up at the bottom of a box of ‘treasures’. And Nah I can’t remember the names at all but the idea of looking at the supplier is a good one – i might remember with a bit of prompting.

  4. Jo says:

    Looks like you’re going to get a good crop. Love the name Nellie Kelly, I haven’t heard of that one before. I have three bushes too, they’re at the stage where their leaves are bright red now, they look stunning.

    • Liz says:

      Nellie Jelly is a brand here. You can buy Nellie Kelly blueberies, strawberries, passionfruit etc etc. In my experience they tend to be good quality and well chosen varieties but they don’t tell you what exactly the variety is, prefering to use their brand name instead.

  5. Mark Willis says:

    You’ll not be disappointed. Blueberries are easy – they don’t need much care – and the fruit is 100% yummy!

  6. Sarah says:

    Looks like you’ll have a good crop from your plants if they carry on the way they are. I haven’t grown blueberries yet, but read somewhere that the berries need to be protected from birds and small children!

  7. Leanne Cole says:

    In a pot, I could grow them, it is a shame I don’t really like them, haha. Your blueberries look fantastic, perhaps, I will try one or two plants.

  8. Susanna says:

    Looking good. Mine are very sparse in the leaf department too, I thought I had bought a dud.
    Are there any ways to acidify soil using citrus fruits? Can you bung a lemon in there and do the job? Just wondering aloud, really

  9. L says:

    Looking great Liz! I’m currently being amazed by how much the fruit is swelling just on ripening. I was sad that all the fruit looked pretty small even at blush stage, but sure enough they are puffing up quite well in the last few days before totally ripe. My new plants are producing much much bigger fruit than the Nellie Kellys though – maybe because so much fewer berries set.
    American readers may know Nellie Kelly blueberries as ‘Sunshine Blue’.

  10. Katie says:

    Looking good! I have planted several blueberries, and managed to lose the lot. I suspect that my soil might not have been acidic enough for them, being more acid-neutral in my yard. I’m determined to try again, but in pots next time.

  11. Nina says:

    Liz, they look fantastic! I did mean to get some this year (a bit late now, do you think?) but I ran out of time. I saw them advertised a couple of towns away a little while back but I expect they are all gone by now. I might check, if I get a chance, just in case.

    Last year, a friend brought me a few punnets from a blueberry farm in East Gippsland and they were the biggest, juiciest, tastiest (and cheapest!) ones I’ve ever had. I can taste them right now!

    DEFINITELY next year (if not before)!

    • Liz says:

      I think you could definitely still get them now, you may not get a crop this year but you can still grow the plant on nicely for next year. By the sound of things I may need to make a pilgrimage to East Gippsland for the most delicious berries EVER.

  12. Natasha says:

    Hi Liz, the one you’ve photographed is most likely the Sunshine Blue blueberry which is the Nellie Kellie one (early harvest & evergreen) – my sunshine blues are about the same stage (pic here – I have four (Maybe 5) diff types – a good source of info is
    Two tips, 1. you can also mulch with pine needles to make the soil more acidic, and 2. make sure you net them to the ground if you actually want to harvest any of them. You should also remove the flowers for the first two years – but no-one wants to hear that 😉

    • Liz says:

      Thanks Natasha, I’ll check out Moonblue. I suspect both my evergreen varieties are Sunshine Blue or very similar but going under different ‘brand’ names. The pine needles advice is great. I have no self control whatsoever so will ignore Tip 2 completely.

  13. Barbara Good says:

    Mine (which is also a Nellie Kelly I think) is at the fruit swelling stage too and has started giving off a real blue hue and the berries are starting to get to be quite a good size. I’m hoping to get another plant this year, one is never going to be enough!

  14. Diana says:

    Last April, my mother brought back a Nellie Kelly blueberry plant back into the tropical Malaysia to try grow them. I thought it won’t fruit with the warm and humid weather. Surprisingly it bear fruits! I hope Bunnings still have them as I plan to bring some back again.

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