Mmmmm... Blueberries

Mmmmm...there's nothing better on a warm summer day than fresh, delicious, home-grown blueberries! These little bundles of sweet-tart flavor are the perfect treat in pies, muffins, scones, smoothies, jams or just fresh off the vine. Right now, we have fresh blueberry plants at Windmill Gardens and, as some presidential candidates would say, "they're huuuuuuge!!!" You don't need a big yard to get big returns from just a few blueberry plants, and right now is a great time to plant them to enjoy now and every summer for years to come. But, more than just tasting good, blueberries are also good for your health. Just take a look at some of the things this powerful little berry boasts:

Antioxidants: These help our bodies fight against disease and exposure to toxins in the environment. Fighting Cancer: Studies suggest that blueberries help our bodies' ability to defend against cancer by inhibiting the reproduction of
cancer cells. Brain Power: The flavonoids and antioxidants in blueberries have been found to improve memory. Eye Sight: Blueberries may reduce age-related macular degeneration. Blueberries can also enhance nighttime visual acuity. Heart-Healthy: In studies, subjects who ate blueberriers had less belly fat and less resistance to insulin, major factors linked to heart disease and diabetes. UTI Prevention: Blueberries, like cranberries, acidify the urine and make the bladder walls less likely to harbor bacteria. Healthy Digestion: Like prunes, blueberries contain a lot of fiber that can enhance regular bowel movements and prevent
constipation. Anti-Aging: With their powerful antioxidant properties, blueberries help fight sun damage on the skin.

Planting Blueberries: Blueberries prefer acidic soils. An easy way to make them happy is to incorporate peat moss into the ground. Make sure they have some drainage (raised beds are an excellent place to plant them). Blueberries also do well in containers on patios and decks, perfect for small yards, condos and apartments. Right now, it's harvest time for many blueberry plants. As we get into the warmer days of summer, be sure to give them proper irrigation. As we transition into fall, cultivate to control weeds and continue to water until the autumn rains take over. Give them a little mulch to winter over, and your blueberry plants will return year after year with a bounty of deliciousness.

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Kids and grown ups alike love picking blueberries fresh from the yard.




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