|Minnesota Report 203|
Northcountry BlueberryJ. Luby, D.K. Wildung, C. Stushnoff, S.T. Munson, P.E. Read, and E.E. Hoover
|Northcountry was selected in 1973 from the cross B6xR2P4 made in 1968. B6 was selected at Excelsior, Minnesota from a progeny of G65xAshworth (Vaccinium corymbosum). R2P4 was selected at Grand Rapids, Minnesota for its low stature and winter injury resistance from a population of open-pollinated seedlings derived from fruit of half-high blueberry plants collected in the Harvard Forest, Massachusetts.
The fruit of Northcountry is medium sized _ inch diameter) and enveloped with a waxy bloom of attractive sky-blue color. The flavor of the fresh fruit is sweet mild, typical of the lowbush blueberry (V. angustifolium). Quality of the processed fruit is equal or superior to Northblue, Northsky, and popular highbush cultivars.
Mature plants of Northcountry are 18 to 24 inches high and 30 to 40 inches in diameter. Plants can tolerate midwinter temperatures down to 35° F with little injury. Productivity of Northcountry normally ranges from 2 to 5 lb. of fruit per plant. Under optimum conditions 8 year old plants can produce up to 7 lb of fruit. The ripening period begins approximately 5 days earlier than Northblue and extends for 2 to 3 weeks.
|Like other blueberry cultivars, Northcountry is most productive when grown in full sun on a well drained site with light textured, acid soil (soil pH between 4.2 and 5.5 is optimum). Northcountry is self-compatible and therefore can be planted without another pollenizer cultivar. Pollination by domestic or wild bees is essential. Protection from rabbits, deer and birds is necessary where these animals are a problem. Pruning is usually unnecessary on young plants except from removing injured or broken wood. Remove unproductive larger stems when plants are 5 to 7 years old.
Northcountry is propagated by cooperating nurseries under a royalty agreement with the Minnesota Nurseryman's Research Corporation.
In accordance with the Americans with Disabilities Act, this material is available in alternative formats upon request. Please contact your University of Minnesota Extension office or the Extension Store at (800) 876-8636.