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7 messages
05/05/2013 at 13:45

I haven't seen bilberries for sale in greengrocers/supermarkets for decades, but I remember the wonderful bilberry pies my Granny baked back in the 1950's, probably with fruit she picked in the wild. 

I would really love to grow my own but hear that they are exceptionally hard to get started ( although they don't seem to suffer in the wild! ).  I have just bought 50 seeds.....what next?  I have plenty of rough acidic ground and am in Aberdeenshire, so it's certainly cold enough!

I'm not a fan of the American blueberry, what I want are good, old-fashioned British bilberries!

Any advice would be gratefully welcomed.

09/05/2013 at 22:24

so...I take it I'm the only bilberry fan out here!

 

09/05/2013 at 22:28

Never come across one - so lets call me a potential fan.  How different are they from blueberries ?

09/05/2013 at 22:44

I have a couple of young bilberry plants I bought last year in large containers of ericaceous compost and which look to be doing well.  I understand their crop is per plant considerably less than a similarly sized blueberry plant, so will be trying to propagate more from cuttings.  Bilberry seeds need cold stratification and may take a long time to germinate, so don't give up if nothing appears.  I'd be tempted to sow them in a mixture of your acid soil and lime-free compost and then leave in a cold frame until something happens.  Some good info here:

http://www.herbs2000.com/herbs/herbs_bilberry.htm

01/09/2013 at 12:55

Brenda, I love bilberries and like you grew up with grandparents who made yummy pies!  I don't like blueberries as i find them tasteless. I have just been up to Scotland and managed to get hold of some plants and have planted them in containers with John Innes ericaceous compost. I will await next year with baited breath to see if they take, but knowing how temperamental they are........

01/09/2013 at 14:01

My mum used to make wimberry (spelling??) pies in the 50's - they were gorgeous. I've often wondered if they were the same as blueberries.

12/04/2014 at 18:27

Winberries/bilberries are not the same as bluberries. I'm about to plant some seeds bought from ebay ref 320945863335

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