Thursday, January 31, 2008

Himalayan Blueberry

Himalayan Blueberry
Vaccinium moupinense
(vak-SIN-ee-um) (mu-pin-EN-see)
Ericaceae (er-ek-AY-see-ay)

I planted a couple of these last summer kind of to see how they would do and I was quite impressed. There seems to more and more people planting Blueberries as an ornamental and for good reason. They are a hardy, showy plant that doesn’t require too much care. I have several types of the larger species but the Himalayan Blueberry I have decided to use more as a groundcover. It is classified as an evergreen shrub so we will see what happens in the spring when this gorgeous winter color gives way to the new growth, which is also reddish tinged. I haven’t seen the flowers yet but they are typically Blueberry shaped (kind of an upside down urn) and a dark red. The berries, which are produced in the fall, are purple and can be eaten.

So far I have enjoyed this plant in the garden and will probably pick up a few more. I am going to shear mine in the spring to keep them at about 12 inches. They normally grow to about 18 to 24 inches tall with a spread of 2.5 to 3 feet. I have noticed that Blueberries like regular watering, especially during establishment.

Yesterday the Digital Flower Pictures Blog had its highest traffic day ever, 490 visitors. Thanks to everyone that did visit. I have certainly enjoyed speaking about some the plants I have seen over the last couple years and sharing some of my flower and plant pictures. Since a lot of research goes into this blog it has been a real learning experience for me.

Winter must be getting close to being over as I got two calls to look at work yesterday. I guess it is time to start waking up from hibernation.

For 2008 I vowed to read more garden books. I have a large reference library and I often flip through the books for inspiration or facts. My goal was to read one book a week but it looks like one book every two weeks is probably a better goal. The one I am reading now is called

Image courtesy of Amazon.com

The Sun King's Garden: Louis XIV, Andre le Notre and the Creation of the Gardens of Versailles
by Ian Thompson. Bloomsbury Publishing PLC.

I have found the book quite interesting and a better read than I thought. Most of the books on my list are about plants and modern day gardening and I found this historical book fascinating. I will probably have to go to Versailles sometime now that I know some of what went into the creation of it.

Unknown Cymbidium Orchid

7 comments:

Jim/ArtofGardening said...

If you do get to Versailles, don't skip this other Le Notre garden-

http://web.mac.com/charlierj/ArtOfGardening/Home/Entries/2007/11/21_Andre_Le_Notre_garden_at_Chateau_Vaux_le_Vicomte.html

I always enjoy your great photography & plant descriptions.

misti said...

Congrats on all the views! I did noticed you had quite a bit of comments going on! Bravo!

The blueberry is neat. I like the foliage, something you don't see every day.

sarala said...

The gardens at Versailles are wonderful although I last saw them many years ago. Have you read much on the gardens of Italy? We saw some amazing ones in Tuscany.

Les, Zone 8a said...

Can you post the zones for the Blueberry, and have you tasted them?

Les

K M F said...

nice images on your blog
have a nice day

Digital Flower Pictures said...

Hi Jim, thanks for the tip. I will check out those pictures over the weekend. I probably won't be going to Europe until the dollar gets a little stronger (could be awhile at this rate).

misti, thanks for visiting again. Your comments are always appreciated. You, ma'am are one of my favorite bloggers.

Les, The Blueberries are very hardy, Zone 5, I think. You shouldn't have any problem ;) I think they can grow in Zone 8, heat wise. I didn't get any berries this year so I can't tell you what they taste like. Everything about this plant is smaller than regular Blueberries.

kmf, thanks. nice to see you hear again.

Bobbie said...

My daughter's wedding reception was decorated with many, many potted orchid plants, which were later given to the guests to take home with them. We had a number of varieties, but the cymbidiums that looked like the ones in this photo were the most popular. Everyone wanted that kind. (I should have photographed all of them before we gave them away, but I was a little busy that day!)