Please Share With Your Friends

Companion plants for blueberry bushes can and will protect and promote the growth of your plants, and encourage delicious fruit production, as long as you choose the correct companions to plant with them.

Keep gardening with organic methods and give your fruit and veggie plants the best space and requirements to grow – keep pests far away from your plants just by planting more plants!

There are three main reasons why we plant companion plants with our blueberry bushes:

  1. To keep pests away
  2. To attract pollinators
  3. To protect their shallow roots
  4. To prevent weeds growing
  5. To add nutrients to the soil

Let’s take a look at common, useful, and practical garden plants that grow well with your blueberry bushes.

6 PRACTICAL TIPS FOR YOUR BLUEBERRY PLANTS

  • Plant at least two different varieties of blueberry plants together so they cross-pollinate. Many gardeners swaer that this helps your berries develop into big, juicy fruits.
  • Find out which other plants enjoy and acid soil. That should be your first thought when selecting companion plants as blueberry plants need acidic soil with a pH level between 4.3 – 5.5.
  • Blueberry plants have shallow root systems so whatever your choose to plant with them, need to be planted outside of their root zone so these aren’t damaged or stunted.
  • Blueberry plants are best sown in spring or late fall but bear in mind that if you’re sowing from seed or starting off with a small necessary plant, it can take 2 to 3 years before your bushes start to produce fruit. This gives you plenty of time to experiment with your companion plants to know whats best for your blueberry bushes.
  • The growing season – when is the best time to plant the companion plant?
  • Blueberry bushes are sensitive to fertilizers, so don’t plant any companions that need heavy fertilizing to live and thrive.

What is a Cover Crop?

Consider planting companion plants that double up as cover crops too. A cover crop is a plant that is grown to reduce soil erosion and to help enrich the soil.

Before you start looking at planting cover crops around your blueberry bushes, give your blueberry plants a good, deep layer of acid mulch around the base of each plant: pine needles, pine bark, and shredded leaves.

Alternatively, you can also plant and grow the cover plants BEFORE you plant your blueberry bushes. Doing this will increase your blueberry plants’ vigor and will increase the yield of your little blue fruit.

Blueberry Plant Roots

it’s important to understand the shallow root system of the blueberry plant.

Cover the ground with pine needles that you can collect from evergreen pine trees near you or in the forest. Pine needles naturally lower the alkalinity of the soil, making it more acidic which is a perfect organic and inexpensive way to naturally help you move from an alkaline soil base to more acidic soil conditions.

Another way to increase the acidity of your soil is to dig in some peat moss before you start planting.

Best Blueberry Companion Plants

Do your homework. You can’t plant just any plant with a blueberry bush and ope it works. Blueberry plants have particular needs and you need to think about these when you are looking for great companions.

Planting companion plants can help your blueberry shrubs to grow well. Expand on this and develop a berry garden. Developing a blueberry bed and intersperse it with strawberry plants, gooseberry plants, cranberries.

Blueberry plants need full sun and an acidic soil pH so it is essential to getting the soil conditions just right, and then look for companions plants that have similar needs. Particular cover crops are extremely beneficial to your blueberry plants as they keep the soil cool, especially during the hot summer months, and help prevent soil erosion.

A good idea is to find a plant that will provide ground cover to protest the blueberry plants’ roots from the heat eg: strawberry plants.

The plants you choose should attract pollinators to assist the blueberry plants to pollinate, but having more than one blueberry bush planted close together is extremely beneficial too.

Really good companions will also add nutrients into the soil.

They shouldn’t grow taller than the blueberry plant as the blueberry needs plenty of sunlight to grow successfully

Let’s take a look at five good options that you can plant together, safely, with these really amazing garden fruits.

Cranberry Plants

Cranberry plants are a great companion plant for blueberries. You can safely plant cranberry plants with blueberry plants as they have similar soil requirements. Like blueberry plants, you also get highbush and lowbush varieties.

Lowbush cranberry bushes act as a protective ground cover, and grow between two and eight inches high. If you do plant highbush varieties, space them out at least 4 foot from your blueberry plant so they don’t compete for the sun. If you’re planting in containers it’s even easier as you can simply move the pots around as you need.

Rhododendrons

Rhododendrons are ideal companion plants that grow well with blueberry plants. They also enjoy the acidic soil, and they like to grow in the shade. These beautiful flowers add gorgeous pops of color to your garden and attract pollinators. Because they make such a good cover crop, they protect the shallow roots of the blueberry plants from the summer heat.

If you plant rhododendrons in the shade of your larger blueberry bushes, they will be happy, while at the same time looking gorgeous, and attracting pollinators. Win-win!

Strawberry Plants

Strawberry plants are also acid-loving plants and have the same basic needs as blueberry plants. These also make a great low growing groundcover option. What fun to stroll your garden and pick a selection of berries for your smoothies!

Basil

Basil is an excellent companion plant to add to your blueberry patch. The plants grow relatively low to the ground and will shade the roots and act as ground cover plant. Basil herbs are great to pick as you need, use the leaves of your basil plants to make pesto or dry them and grind for pure, fresh herbs in your kitchen.

Thyme

Thyme is another herb but it is one that flowers, so the small purple flowers and the Italian aroma will help attract pollinators to your blueberry plants. that is useful in your kitchen

The above options are some of the best companion plants for blueberry plants.

AVOID PLANTING WITH BLUEBERRY PLANTS

Tomato Plants

Tomato plants are not the best plants to grow with blueberry plants because they do not have the same soil requirements.

The second reason is because tomato plants are annual plants, so they will complete their growing and life cycle within one year. Then they need to be dug up and you need to start again from seed or plugs. This constant planting and pulling and digging up the plants will damage the roots of your blueberry plants, so best to avoid tomatoes all together.

Brassicas

Don’t plant brassicas together with blueberry plants. An individual plant takes a lot of energy to grow and it needs a lot of water. These plants are nutrient heavy and grow well in soil with a higher pH level.

Root vegetables

Beets, potatoes, carrots and other root veggies shouldn’t be planted with blueberry plants. The growth of these veggies underground will displace and damage the root system of the blueberries.

Beneficial Insects

There are certain bugs that can help your plants really succeed. Bees and ladybugs are the bugs that you want as they make great pollinators.

Have a a variety of plants in blossom at the same time as your blueberries so that they bees can do what bees do best! Good companion plants mean that they help your blueberry plants to grow and thrive; they protect them, enhance the soil, shade the shallow roots, and keep destructive pests away.

Storing Your Fresh Blueberries

Fresh blueberries picked off the plants will keep in the fridge for about 1 – 2 weeks if stored dry and correctly. But what if you’ve picked bushels, or gleaned a local farm and now have boxes and boxes of blueberries. How are you going to store them to enjoy in a few months time?