Berry Bushes and Seeds
From blueberries and raspberries to strawberries, elderberries, and huckleberries, at Gurney's you can shop popular berry bush fruits and seeds. For beginning and experienced gardeners alike, berry bushes are some of the most rewarding fruits to grow. Berry shrubs are manageable, often start producing fruits within a year or two, and are easy to fit into gardens and the landscape. Many also double as ornamentals, making them good for the edible landscape—and the sun-ripened fruits are both delicious and nutritious. At Gurney's, we grow and test lots of fruit bushes in our trial gardens, and our berry bushes for sale offer the best-performing and best-tasting varieties for home gardeners.
What is a Berry Bush?
A berry bush or berry shrub is a broad term for plants that produce berries. They can be as small as strawberry plants to as large as elderberry and cranberry shrubs. Edible berry bushes include fruit-producing shrubs like blueberries and currants, brambles like raspberries, blackberries and boysenberries, and grape vines.
How To Plant Berry Bushes
Most bush berries perform well throughout a large section of the United States. When selecting berry bushes, check their hardiness zone range to make sure they will perform in your area. When selecting a place to plant berry bushes, keep in mind that almost all berry bushes require full sun, or six or more hours of direct sunlight daily. They also thrive in well-drained soil. Mixing compost into the soil before planting is one way to improve drainage in the soil and increase its organic matter. Finally, make sure they have enough space to grow and receive air circulation.
Planting berry bushes is easy. Dig a hole large enough to accommodate the roots. Fill the hole with dirt, tamp down the soil and water. Many bushes with berries benefit from an all-natural, slow-release plant food or fertilizer that is formulated specifically for their needs. Follow the label instructions for feeding berry bushes at planting time.
When to Plant Berry Bushes
Most berry bushes can be planted in the spring or the fall. At Gurney's, berry bushes are shipped at the proper time frame for planting berry bushes in your grow zone.
Popular Berries That Grow on Bushes
Strawberries, blueberries and raspberries are often the first fruits that come to mind when considering fruits and berries that grow on bushes. However, home gardeners have lots of other choices, including many that fit beautifully into the landscape. For example, currant bushes are excellent for growing as a low hedge. Elderberries are very ornamental shrubs. With a little planning, you can grow a wide variety of unique and delicious berry bushes. Learn more about the varieties of berry bushes for sale:
Common Berry Bush Diseases
While berry bushes are fairly easy to grow, you may notice that your berry bushes are not growing as expected or showing signs of disease. Don't get discouraged by this. Learning how to detect and address the disease can help you grow healthy berry bushes. Also, practicing good gardening practices can also help control diseases. Here are some common berry bush diseases:
Anthracnose is one of the most common berry bush diseases. Anthracnose disease is a fungal infection that can live in your bush's soil and can be spread during rain or irrigation. This type of disease normally thrives in warmer, wetter climates, and can affect both the foliage and fruits of the berry plant. The plant's leaves may have sunken, brownish-red spots and purple margins. The plant may also have dried up fruits and lesions.
A multi-pronged approached is recommended for controlling anthracnose disease. Here are some tips:
- If possible, select berry bush varieties that have anthracnose resistance.
- Avoid overhead watering.
- Prune old and dead wood from berry bushes.
- Sanitize tools to avoid spread of the disease.
- Harvest fruits when ripe and avoid letting overripe fruits lay on the ground and rot.
- Provide your plants with proper airflow, sunlight and fertilization.
Cane blight is another type of fungal disease that commonly affects brambles such as blackberry and raspberry bushes and can lead to reduced fruit yields. Often, you'll see sudden death of side branches and dark brown or purple spots on the canes in early summer. The fungal disease usually spreads during warm, wet weather. To control, mark the affected canes, but wait to prune them until mid to late winter when the plants are dormant. Use sharp pruning tools and disinfect after each cut. When planting berry bushes, make sure they have proper spacing, receive plenty of air flow and good drainage, and control weeds.
Gray mold is another fungal disease that can cause fruit loss. If your berry bush has a hairy mold on its ripening fruits, it's likely gray mold disease. This type of berry bush disease spreads fast, especially during cloudy, wet weather and is difficult to get rid of. Like other fungal diseases of berry bushes, control starts with selecting a planting site that receives plenty of sunshine, air circulation and good drainage. Also, practice good weed control. If using a fungicide to slow the spread of the gray mold, make sure to follow label instructions.
Leaf Curl Disease
Leaf curl disease is a virus that's often spread by aphids and other insects and can be extremely damaging to your berry bushes. You can identify leaf curl disease on your bush plants by looking for thick and curling leaves. Berry bushes diseased with leaf curl also may have leaves that turn yellowish-green, stunted growth, or may not produce fruits. Leaf curl slowly infects your plants, usually spreading from the roots to the canes. Because it is a fatal disease, removing infected plants is recommended. Other control measures include planting berry bushes away from wild raspberries and infected plants and controlling aphids.