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Overwintering container 'Sunshine Blue' Blueberries 6b

Posted by cearbhaill Zone 6b Eastern KY (My Page) on
Sun, Oct 20, 13 at 15:27

I don't know how to overwinter my container 'Sunshine Blue' blueberries in zone 6b. I know they need some cold weather, but how cold is too cold? What low temperature Fahrenheit do they require and for how long?

They could stay outside under a covered patio tucked up against the house. I have burlap and straw available to wrap them in if need be.

They could come in to an unheated garage. I am not certain of the temperatures as I have a greenhouse structure in there with HPS lights in it during winter and I know they do drive the temps up somewhat. I'd be sure and stick a thermometer out there to judge how much that affects the rest of the garage.

I am mostly curious as to how cool they need to be for how many days. I can move them around with a fair amount of ease, so if they could stay in a protected area outside until it gets to below XX degrees and then come into the garage, that would be fine.

Mainly looking for specific temperatures to aim for, and for how long.

Thank you!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Overwintering container 'Sunshine Blue' Blueberries 6b

Sunshine Blue doesn't require much,about 150 chill hours,between 45-32F.They are suppose to grow in zone 5,so they should be okay outside,especially if using your cover material.The garage could work too,if it's under 45.
One Winter,I made a frame out of coat hanger wire and put plastic over it to protect them from the snow,since they didn't lose their leaves. Brady

This post was edited by Bradybb on Sun, Oct 20, 13 at 17:12

RE: Overwintering container 'Sunshine Blue' Blueberries 6b

I'm in Northern KY and have a smaller, 3yr old Sunshine Blue that I left outside in it's pot uncovered last winter. It survived 7F a couple of times but had some minor die back. It has been fine this year and put on some growth. The roots are probably the more important part to protect. You can probably just leave it outside but put some dirt, straw, leaves, or gravel around the pot to protect the roots. The burlap would probably be fine for the top of the plant, just try not to lay it directly on the branches. If you have a couple of thicker gauge wires, make 2 intersecting (crossing) loops from the wire over the branches and then drape the burlap over the plant, keeping it just off of the branches. I had a couple of tifblue rabbiteye blueberries planted last year and they also did fine uncovered all winter.

RE: Overwintering container 'Sunshine Blue' Blueberries 6b

Thanks guys- I will probably just wrap it, leave it under the patio roof, and bring it into the garage during the super cold snaps.

Although if my wooly worm observations hold true it should be quite a mild winter. Fingers crossed!

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