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Blueberries: More Than Just Delectable Fruit

Articles: Blueberries: More Than Just Delectable Fruit

Clematis viticella ‘Polish Spirit’ draped over a high-bush blueberry (Vaccinium corymbosum ‘Sunshine Blue’) with ripening fruit. Author’s photograph

After much effort and expense devoted to constructing arches and trellises for a number of clematis vines, I thought I finally had all the vines trained and neatly fastened to their structures. I could just stand back and admire my tidy collection. Then, one day, I happened upon Clematis viticella ‘Polish Spirit’ refusing to grow upon its arch. Instead it had happily flopped on and meandered through a neighboring bedmate, a ‘Sunshine Blue’ blueberry. Happy companions they were, the purple flowers and blue berries complementing each other. The vine, at ease and recumbent on the shrub, needed no tying—what could be simpler?

I have been growing blueberries in my garden for about ten years now, and clematis about as long. It turns out that blueberries and clematis enjoy similar growing conditions: sun to part shade; cool, humus-rich, evenly moist soil; and acid fertilizer for the blueberries, which did not seem to be a problem for the clematis (they normally favor...

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Articles: Calochortophilia: A Californian’s Love Affair with a Genus by Katherine Renz

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