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Hairy Highbush Blueberry Vaccinium fuscatum

Other Common Name(s):

Previously known as:

  • Ctanococcus virgatus
  • Cyanococcus atrococcus
  • Cyanococcus fuscatus
  • Vaccinium atrococcum
  • Vaccinium corymbosum var. atrococcum
Phonetic Spelling
vak-SIN-ee-um FUS-kah-tum
Description

Black Highbush Blueberries are a deciduous shrub in the heath family native to North America.  It can be distinguished from other high bush blueberries by the hairs and dingy color of the underside of its leaves and its dark fruits that lack a white (glaucous) coating.  

Its natural habitats include bogs, pocosins, swamps, wet woods, edges of lakes, and also in uplands.  Its prefers moist or wet soils that do not contain lime.   Soils high in acid are ideal.  It will grow in both full sun and part shade, however, full sun location will yield the most fruits.  Sheltering for high winds is desirable.  

Not liking its roots disturbed, it can be grown in a container until its permanent position has been established.  Allow the new plant to have at least one winter in an indoor location, such as a greenhouse.  A shady spot in the greenhouse is ideal.  Wait until the last frost before relocating to its permanent home.

The large, sweet, and juicy fruits can be eaten both raw or cooked.  Wildlife also enjoy the fruits.

Insects, Diseases, and Other Plant Problems:  None noted.

 

 

 

More information on Vaccinium.

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Tags:
#deciduous#fall color#perennial#deciduous shrub#native shrub#upright#NC native#edible fruits#pollinator plant#larval host plant#food source summer#edible#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#Piedmont Mountains FAC#Coastal FACW#native#bird friendly#mammals#food source soft mast fruit#butterfly friendly#audubon
 
Cultivars / Varieties:
Tags:
#deciduous#fall color#perennial#deciduous shrub#native shrub#upright#NC native#edible fruits#pollinator plant#larval host plant#food source summer#edible#food source herbage#food source nectar#food source pollen#Piedmont Mountains FAC#Coastal FACW#native#bird friendly#mammals#food source soft mast fruit#butterfly friendly#audubon
  • Attributes:
    Genus:
    Vaccinium
    Species:
    fuscatum
    Family:
    Ericaceae
    Life Cycle:
    Perennial
    Woody
    Recommended Propagation Strategy:
    Layering
    Seed
    Country Or Region Of Origin:
    Eastern North America
    Distribution:
    AL, AR, DE, KY, LA, MS, NC, NJ, SC, TN, TX, VA
    Wildlife Value:
    Attracts birds. A host plant for butterfly larvae. Special value to native bees.
    Play Value:
    Attracts Pollinators
    Easy to Grow
    Edible fruit
    Textural
    Wildlife Larval Host
    Edibility:
    Fruits are highly edible fresh or cooked.
    Dimensions:
    Height: 3 ft. 0 in. - 12 ft. 0 in.
    Width: 3 ft. 0 in. - 10 ft. 0 in.
  • Whole Plant Traits:
    Plant Type:
    Edible
    Native Plant
    Shrub
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Habit/Form:
    Erect
    Multi-stemmed
    Maintenance:
    Medium
    Texture:
    Medium
  • Cultural Conditions:
    Light:
    Full sun (6 or more hours of direct sunlight a day)
    Partial Shade (Direct sunlight only part of the day, 2-6 hours)
    Soil Texture:
    Loam (Silt)
    Sand
    Soil pH:
    Acid (<6.0)
    Soil Drainage:
    Good Drainage
    Occasionally Dry
    Occasionally Wet
    Available Space To Plant:
    3 feet-6 feet
    6-feet-12 feet
    NC Region:
    Coastal
    Mountains
    Piedmont
    USDA Plant Hardiness Zone:
    4a, 4b, 5b, 5a, 6a, 6b, 7a, 7b, 8b, 8a
  • Fruit:
    Fruit Color:
    Black
    Blue
    Green
    Pink
    Red/Burgundy
    Fruit Value To Gardener:
    Edible
    Showy
    Display/Harvest Time:
    Summer
    Fruit Type:
    Berry
    Fruit Length:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Width:
    < 1 inch
    Fruit Description:
    Green ripening to black fruit displays from June to August. No glaucus coating unlike other blueberry fruits.
  • Flowers:
    Flower Color:
    Green
    Pink
    White
    Flower Inflorescence:
    Raceme
    Flower Value To Gardener:
    Showy
    Flower Bloom Time:
    Spring
    Flower Shape:
    Bell
    Urn
    Flower Petals:
    fused petals
    Flower Size:
    < 1 inch
    Flower Description:
    Early spring white bell-shaped flowers bloom on axillary racemes from February to May.
  • Leaves:
    Woody Plant Leaf Characteristics:
    Deciduous
    Leaf Color:
    Green
    Leaf Feel:
    Leathery
    Deciduous Leaf Fall Color:
    Brown/Copper
    Gold/Yellow
    Orange
    Red/Burgundy
    Leaf Type:
    Simple
    Leaf Arrangement:
    Alternate
    Leaf Shape:
    Elliptical
    Lanceolate
    Ovate
    Leaf Margin:
    Entire
    Hairs Present:
    Yes
    Leaf Length:
    1-3 inches
    Leaf Width:
    < 1 inch
    Leaf Description:
    Undersides of leaves are dingy and hairy. Veins raised and visible on the underside. The leaves may sometimes persist through the winter months.
  • Bark:
    Bark Color:
    Dark Brown
    Green
    Light Brown
    Surface/Attachment:
    Exfoliating
    Bark Description:
    New wood is green while older wood is brown with exfoliating bark.
  • Stem:
    Stem Color:
    Green
    Red/Burgundy
    Stem Is Aromatic:
    No
    Stem Description:
    May turn red in winter
  • Landscape:
    Landscape Location:
    Meadow
    Naturalized Area
    Patio
    Pond
    Vertical Spaces
    Walkways
    Woodland
    Landscape Theme:
    Butterfly Garden
    Edible Garden
    Native Garden
    Pollinator Garden
    Winter Garden
    Design Feature:
    Barrier
    Border
    Hedge
    Mass Planting
    Screen/Privacy
    Attracts:
    Butterflies
    Pollinators
    Small Mammals
    Songbirds
    Resistance To Challenges:
    Wet Soil