Vaccinium

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Vaccinium are Blueberries but also Cranberries. Classified among the 'small fruits', they are shrubs from the Ericaceae family cultivated for their edible and delicious berries, red for cranberries (Vaccinium macrocarpon), or almost black for the famous blueberries. They are harvested in summer or autumn, for example to garnish the famous blueberry pie, make excellent jams, or accompany certain savory dishes. The main species cultivated in our gardens derive from the European Blueberry - Vaccinium myrtillus - a shrub of 30 to 50 cm (12 to 20in), and its American counterpart - Vaccinum corymbosum - or Blueberry, a bush that reaches 1 m (3ft) to 1.5 m (5ft) depending on the varieties. The Cranberry - Vaccinium macrocarpon - on the other hand, is a small groundcover shrub of 30 cm (12in) in height. All produce tasty berries which are sweet or tart. To bear fruit, blueberry plants need one to three companion plants planted beside them, of the same or different variety. Cranberries, on the other hand, are self-fertile, only one plant will bear fruit. Vaccinium shrubs are very cold-resistant and require a rather acidic soil, such as heathland soil, which remains moist throughout the year.

 

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