Blueberries are one of the healthiest and tastiest fruits you can grow. They have unique qualities and benefits few other fruits or vegetables have. An example of one of these fine delicacies is the Bluegold Blueberry. The Bluegold is one of the most delicious and sweetest varieties of blueberries. While it’s is smaller than many other blueberry shrubs, they produce a bountiful harvest of easy-to-pick berries.
If your garden doesn’t have the space needed for larger blueberry varieties, keep reading to learn about the Bluegold Blueberry. It may be the right fit for your garden space.
History of the Bluegold Blueberry
The Bluegold Blueberry was first grown as a commercial crop in the early 1900s. It was discovered by Elizabeth White and Frederick Coville in New Jersey while they were experimenting with different plant cultivations. The Bluegold is native to the Northeastern United States and was one of the original cornerstones of the blueberry growing industry.
Characteristics of the Bluegold Blueberry
The Bluegold Blueberry is a northern highbush variety plant with an upright, deciduous stature. Unlike many other northern highbush blueberry plants, which stand between 5 and 8 feet tall, the Bluegold usually tops out at around 4-6 feet. It’s noteworthy for the waxy, bell-shaped white flowers that bloom prior to the berries that follow. When fall rolls around, and the plant has been picked clean, its dark green leaves change to various shades of red and purple.
Bluegold Blueberries require 800 to 1000 chill hours.
This unique blueberry plant has flowers that start blooming in May. After the flowers have bloomed, they fall away and are replaced with light blue blueberries that ripen anywhere between late June and early July. You’ll know that your berries are ready for picking when they turn to a light to medium blue color.
The Bluegold blueberry is extremely popular because of its delicious taste and texture. A healthy Bluegold shrub will produce berries that are sweet, but not overbearingly so. They are very firm in texture, making for a delightful crunch as you bite into them.
Bluegolds are also prized for the large to medium-sized berries that they produce. They’re known for the large batches of fruit each shrub can produce. They have one of the highest yields for blueberry bushes of their size, and they’re also one of the most dependable blueberry varieties.
If you want to get the most out of your Bluegold Blueberry plant, you should figure out what hardiness zone you’re located in. Bluegolds are best suited for USDA Hardiness zones 4-7.
Size and Spacing
While the Bluegold Blueberry is slightly shorter and smaller than other blueberry plants, you still want to allow room to grow. They typically max out at 4′ tall, but some can grow up to 6′ in height. If you want to plant a few of them, make sure to leave 4 to 6 feet in between each plant and each row.
Like many other varieties of blueberries, the Bluegold Blueberry is self-pollinating. However, cross-pollination with other northern highbush blueberry varieties will produce bigger berries and larger crops per plant.
Blueberry Shrub Care
Bluegold Blueberries are favorites because of their hardiness and durability. However, there are a few things that you should know if you plan to grow and care for any blueberry shrub.
These plants are grown in the summer for a reason – they love sunlight! You should plant your blueberry in an area where it will get at least four hours of sunlight — preferably full sun followed by partial shade.
Bluegold blueberries require acidic soil with a pH level of 4.8 to 5.2. It should also be organic, rich, and moist but with excellent drainage. Like most blueberries, the Bluegold doesn’t do well with standing water.
For the first two years of its life, a Bluegold Blueberry should receive around 1-2 inches of water per week. After it has its bearing and starts to mature, an inch of rain every week and a half is sufficient for plants over two years old.
Because Bluegolds love acidity, you’ll want to make sure that you fertilize with an acidic fertilizer. Early spring is the best time to add fertilizer to your Bluegold Blueberry plant. Make sure that you follow the instructions on whatever fertilizer you choose to avoid over or under-fertilizing your plant. You can follow up your fertilizer with a layer of rich, organic mulch.
The Bluegold Blueberry is relatively low-maintenance after the first several years. It’s a good idea to remove the flowers that appear during the first spring after planting. This helps your blueberry shrub become established. After the first two years, you only need to prune your Bluegold as needed to prevent overgrowth. Pruning should be done in late winter, just prior to spring. Follow this link for more information about blueberry bush pruning.
Disease and Pests
Bluegolds are hearty and durable bushes that are resistant to many diseases.
However, humans aren’t the only ones that enjoy their delicious fruit. Birds, worms, bugs, and many other pests are common problems when it comes to blueberry bushes. They feed on the fruit as well as the leaves and stems and can cause serious problems. It would be a wise investment to cover your bushes with netting and to invest in pest control.
For information about how to identify, eliminate, and deter pests, read our blog post on the 9 common pests you’ll encounter with blueberries.
When to Harvest Bluegold Blueberries
Bluegold blueberries are best when harvested in late June to early July. They’re a mid to late season berry, and, depending on where you live, you may be able to harvest them earlier or later. For more answers about harvesting your blueberries, check out this page on our website!
Common Uses For Bluegold Blueberries
Bluegolds are most commonly used in desserts and baking, or they can be eaten raw. It’s hard to go wrong with this delicious berry.
What Does This Blueberry Taste Like?
Bluegold blueberries have a sweet taste bordering on very sweet.
These berries are best when used in cakes, pies, and muffins. However, they can also provide a sweet glaze for meat dishes of all kinds.
Like I said before, these are one of the best berries for eating raw.
There are tons of tasty dishes out there that you can prepare with the Bluegold blueberry. Here are a few good ideas to start you out.
Simple Blueberry Jam (just three ingredients!)
Health Benefits of Bluegold Blueberries
Aside from being delicious snacks and tasty treats, blueberries have many health benefits. They’re extremely rich in antioxidants, potassium, fiber, and vitamin C, K, and B. Here are some of the known benefits of blueberries.
- They help with weight loss.
- They lower blood pressure and reduce the risk of heart disease.
- They help with recovering from heart conditions such as strokes.
- They contain cancer-fighting ingredients.
Where to Buy Bluegold Blueberry Plants or Seeds
Bluegold blueberries are very common, and the plants and seeds are readily available at most hardware, home improvement, and nursery stores, such as Lowes, Ace Hardware, and Home Depot. You can buy a Bluegold Blueberry online at Nature Hills Nursery.
Where to Buy Bluegold Blueberries
If you want to skip the waiting part and get right to the goods, go ahead and purchase a pint of Bluegold blueberries. Most farmer’s markets, nurseries, and blueberry farms sell these berries.
Wrapping Up the Bluegold Blueberry
If you haven’t figured it out yet, the Bluegold Blueberry is one of the best-tasting and easiest-to-grow blueberry plants. It’s loved for its delicious fruit and beautiful leaves and flowers.
Even in the winter months, after its leaves have fallen but before its flowers bloom, the branches and stems turn a golden yellow. No matter the time of year, the Bluegold is a year-round beauty and a treasure of the Northeastern United States.
Excited for more blueberry content? Then check out our blueberry page to learn all about how to grow, care for, and harvest this delicious fruit!