COMMON CANADIAN BLUEBERRY, HUCKLEBERRY Vaccinium myrtilloides
Vaccinium myrtilloides is one of the sweetest blueberries known! It is a shrub with common names including common blueberry, Canadian blueberry, velvetleaf huckleberry, and velvetleaf blueberry. It is common in much of North America, reported from all 10 Canadian provinces plus Nunavut and Northwest Territories, as well as from the northeastern and Great Lakes states in the United States. It is also known to occur in Montana and Washington.
Vaccinium myrtilloides is a low spreading deciduous shrub growing up to 50 cm (20 inches) tall, often spreading to form small thickets. The leaves are bright green, paler underneath with velvety hairs. The flowers are white, bell-shaped, 5 mm (0.2 inches) long. The fruit is a small sweet bright blue to dark blue berry.
Vaccinium myrtilloides grows best in open coniferous woods with dry loose acidic soils; it is also found in forested bogs and rocky areas. Vaccinium myrtilloides hybridizes in the wild with Vaccinium angustifolium (lowbush blueberry).
It is cultivated and grown commercially in Canada and Maine, mainly harvested from managed wild patches.
It is also an important food source for black bears, deer, small mammals, and birds.
This species is listed as endangered in Indiana and Connecticut, as threatened in Iowa and Ohio, and as sensitive in Washington (state).
Hardiness zones: 2-8
Seeds per pack: 20
Germination: These seeds should be cold stratified for 3 months. Place in a ziplock bag with a damp paper towel, and place in the fridge. After the cold stratification, push the seeds onto the surface of an acid medium (such as peat-moss and silica sand), watered, drained and covered with clean plastic and then set into a bright window (no direct sun). Do not bury the seeds are they require light for germination. The seeds should germinate in 2 to 8 weeks. should be stratified for 3 months, ie stored damp and very cool such as in the fridge. If they are stored dry and warm they will be dead after a year.