Howling Woods Farm

Highbush Blueberry

 

Vaccinium corymbosum

Vaccinium corymbosum, the northern highbush blueberry, is a North American species of blueberry.    This blueberry species is a 6-12 ft. high and wide shrub with numerous upright stems and twiggy branches. Reddish-green spring leaves turn blue-green in summer and red, yellow, orange and purple in fall. White or pink, bell-shaped flowers in drooping clusters are followed by edible, blue fruit.

Most blueberries found in the supermarket derive from this shrub. Elizabeth White and Dr. Frederick Colville produced the first cultivated crop of blueberries, which were grown in New Jersey, at the turn of the 20th century. Since then, dozens of varieties of cultivated highbush blueberries have come to flourish across in the U.S., Canada, South America and beyond.

It is often found in wet areas, but closely related growths occur in dry sites. These plants are very important to wildlife: their berries are relished by songbirds, game birds, bears, and small mammals; the twigs and foliage are eaten by deer and rabbits. Because of their food value and spectacular red fall foliage, these shrubs are excellent for naturalized landscaping.