I’ve got about 15 blueberry bushes, SHB and RE, small to midsize, in the ground. Due to bird damage, we’ve decided to move them all in front of our house into pots. I was going to wait till winter, but as most of them are still loaded with unripe berries, I thought it may be nice to move them now and be able the kids to harvest something. I thought as the roots are usually shallow and small we might get away without shock.
I think you’d be way better off moving them in winter. Even with daily watering you are asking for trouble moving them now. Yes maybe it could be done. But I think it more likely they’d drop most of their leaves.
Based on experience I’d have to agree with @fruitnut. We had the same problem with the birds, so a couple summers ago I moved 4 bushes. They were all healthy, and only 2 made it. Not sure what part of the country you’re in, but down here in NE Florida we’re already at close to 100. I personally wouldn’t chance it.
Do you think the birds can’t fly around the house to the front? They will go to great efforts to get some nice sweet blueberries.
Can’t speak for the OP, but I don’t seem to have the same problems at the front of the house as I do around back…it’s strange.
I’ll Transplant them in winter.
My hunch is that you will get more blueberries in the end if you leave them where they are and work on growing them big so they out produce what the birds eat. In my opinion the only reason it might matter what side of the house your berries are on is if one season you have a nesting pair of mocking birds or some other territorial bird nesting nearby running other birds off. Where in the yard that happens will change from year to year.
When I was a teenager we used very realistic looking rubber black racer snakes to keep the birds off. You just had to move them every day. Despite looking, I have not been able to find said rubber snakes in the stores for less than $10 each since. Today you see dragons, dinosaurs and the like.
Really, the best thing to do is leave your bushes be, and concentrate on encouraging vegetative growth for now. As long as they are small, the birds will get all the berries. Moving them will make them small longer and will insure that the birds are able to eat all the berries longer. Putting them in pots will guarantee that they will always be pretty small and that the birds will always get the berries. God bless.
Thanks. The blueberries are currently in a separate location A kilometer or two away that’s completely unattended most of the time. I did a test run this year with three blueberry plants in front of our house in pots ( transplanted in winter), and the results are good so far. The birds are very clever here and do get some. But my daughters enjoy picking them on the way out the door to school. We also have a dog next to them, and a free roaming cat, and a street with traffic, all of which tend to distract the birds. I can also care for them better, additionally regular ammonia sulfate feedings. So I think everyone will benefit more from having them outside the house.
I can’t find a long pot that is also wide and shallow, to simulate what I imagine blueberry roots are like. Maybe something like the large strawberry planters would work.