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USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map

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Varieties for Cold Climates

Northern highbush (Vaccinium corymbosum) and northern low-bush blueberries (Vaccinium angustifolium) are cold-hardy and require winter chilling hours in order to produce fruit. The highbush variety is hardy in U.S.Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 3 through 7 while the low-bush variety is hardy in zones 2 through 7. Highbush blueberries produce larger fruit than the low-bush type, making them more desirable in the home garden and for commercial growing.

Varieties for Mild Climates

Rabbiteye (Vaccinium ashei) and southern highbush (Vaccinium corymbosum) varieties don't need the winter chilling hours required by the northern varieties, making them ideal for mild southern climates. Rabbiteye is a wild southern native that produces well in mild climates. Horticulturalists developed the southern highbush by crossing northern highbush varieties with the wild rabbiteye types. Hardiness varies depending on the cultivated variety for both rabbit eye and southern highbush, but they are generally hardy in zones 6 through 10.

Blueberry Growing Conditions

All blueberry varieties thrive in acidic soil. For the northern varieties, a pH range of 4.5 to 5.5 is what you should aim for. When growing southern and warm climate types, the soil can be slightly closer to neutral with a range of 5.5 to 6.0. Soil amendments at planting time and mulches that increase the acidity levels in the soil include pine needles, leaf mold, pine bark and peat moss. Blueberries thrive in a sunny spot.

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