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Is anyone growing Cranberries?

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Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby Mostly Weeds » Jun 03, 2012 9:50 pm

Saw some cranberries "Stevens" in Wal-Mart tonight... I came home to do some reading and I think I might go back and buy a few plants. They would make a really nice edible groundcover. I think I have pretty decent conditions in a few spots around my perimeter garden, although I might mix some more peat in where they'd go.

I've never seen them in a store or nursery before so I was really surprised. Are any of you growing cranberries?? :P

Adam
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Re: Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby OGrubber » Jun 04, 2012 10:35 am

Interesting.
They're considered a bog plant, yes?
If so, I have a really wet spot that would grow them, I think. My problem would be getting enough water to flood at harvest time - unles... now you have me thinking. laf
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Re: Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby Mostly Weeds » Jun 04, 2012 10:56 am

Here's an interesting read, and it mentions the 'Stevens' variety - http://www.cranberrycreations.com/growing.html

A few notes:

fine root system that sends out runners like a strawberry
fruit is born on uprights
does not like to compete with weeds
nice low ph soil, high organics, peat, sand is best
fruit harvested sometime in september in our area likely

It's not necessary to grow in a bog, or to flood for harvest. Apparently that's just done because it's the easiest way to harvest the fruit in a commercial setting. Who knew?!

I found the plants for sale in the Upper James walmart Inge, they had maybe half a dozen of them. I'm going to try and go today and snap up 2. I'm sure other area stores might be carrying them too. The Ancaster garden centre at the walmart is pretty nice. I'm sure Brantford has some good stuff too.

Adam

PS - cranberries as edible groundcover mentioned in a Mother Earth News article too - http://www.motherearthnews.com/Happy-Ho ... overs.aspx
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Re: Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby Dumbo » Jun 04, 2012 6:07 pm

OGrubber wrote:They're considered a bog plant, yes?

I thought the same. Mainly because I recall watching that show on the Discovery Channel called "Dirty Jobs". In that show on Cranberry Farming it was "wet harvesting".

The actual "Dirty Jobs" show on cranberry farming can be viewed online here:
http://dsc.discovery.com/videos/dirty-j ... armer.html

Right in the intro (which I never noticed till i just played it now) they state there are 2 ways of harvesting:
Dry harvesting which claims an 80% fruit yield success.
Or wet harvesting which is a 95% fruit yield.

So I guess the bog thing is a method of harvest only.

Adam seems to be competing with Mike Rowe of Dirty Jobs... ;)
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Re: Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby OGrubber » Jun 05, 2012 12:11 pm

Ok, so I've done some reading....
It looks as though cranberries would be problimatical for me.
For starters they don't like clay which means I'd have to do massive amending, and they like sand dusting which clay doesn't like. They also have a very low weed tolerance.
And, considering that a "good" yield is only 1lb per 5 sqft... I would probably go through 40+ lbs per week x 4 weeks [hopefully!] - that's a lot of ground to amend and keep weed free.
And here I thought harvesting would be the main issue. Hmm.
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Re: Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby Mostly Weeds » Jun 05, 2012 12:35 pm

That's exacltly the conclusion I came to as well, to be honest. LOL, false alarm folks!!

The harvest isn't exactly huge for the space they'd occupy. They are a seemingly picky plants to spend a bed for and tend.

The more I looked at pictures and stood staring at them in the store I was probably most turned off that they really are a sort of dingey dull rusty coloured foliage too, so unless I was going to be filling bucket after bucket of edibles they sorta need to justify their spot when not setting fruit, no?

Ahh well, I set them back and walked out. A pair of gorgeous Trumpet Vines jumped into my buggy though and I couldn't get rid of them before checkout so I gave them a ride home. I'm going to let them eat up a new arbour. :lol:
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Re: Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby B_BQ » Jun 05, 2012 1:01 pm

Mostly Weeds wrote:A pair of gorgeous Trumpet Vines jumped into my buggy though and I couldn't get rid of them before checkout so I gave them a ride home. I'm going to let them eat up a new arbour.


Hope it's a very very strong arbour!!! lol
Beautiful vine but can get out of hand and can literally eat up anything it's growing on/up/over!
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Re: Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby Mostly Weeds » Jun 05, 2012 2:48 pm

DOH I actually meant Honeysuckle, not trumpet vine ~ not sure why I wrote that.

But yes, it is a sturdy arbour. The Honeysuckle is much less woody than a Trumpet Vine, correct?
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Re: Is anyone growing Cranberries?

Postby B_BQ » Jun 05, 2012 3:09 pm

Mostly Weeds wrote:DOH I actually meant Honeysuckle, not trumpet vine

That's when brain is not quite engaged - happens all the time to me! lol

Mostly Weeds wrote:The Honeysuckle is much less woody than a Trumpet Vine, correct?

Certainly, it's a less invasive, lighter vine, but still can get out of hand and needs a sturdy arbour. I have one in my small patio area, doesn't get a great deal of sun, but obviously enough. I was so tired of it a couple of years ago, (it's messy when the flowers fade), and it was a bit straggly. I cut it down completely and said if it survives it can stay, if it dies I won't mourn! It survived and got really thick and healthy, but it still makes a mess as the flowers fade and I have to keep cleaning out the tiny pond that is nearby.
Mine is the yellow variety, 'Lonicera', but there are several varieties.
BTW they also attract aphids, but the hummingbirds and bees love them! A bird's nest is built in mine every year, usually by a robin!
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