Pink Lemonade Blueberry – Backyard Food Growing

Have you ever seen a pink blueberry before? It looks like something that just shouldn’t exist! It’s bright pink and perfectly unique. If you don’t have any of these plants in your garden yet then I highly recommend adding a couple this year.

The best little surprise from the pink lemonade blueberry is that these these eye-catching little beauties have a taste quite different than a regular blue blueberry. You’ll be amazed, they actually have a distinct tangy sweet taste just like pink lemonade.

It’s very unlikely that will you see these berries picked for sale in the store like you do regular blueberries. As far as I know these are not grown in large scale fields like the blue ones. These delicious little pink delights are grown as a novelty only in smaller scale home gardens. 

Growth Habit

Their growth habits are very much the same as a regular high bush blueberry plant and they can be grown in containers with the same type of care. Use a large 24″ toy tub with holes in the bottom. The plant will grow happily there for years and produce big, plump and tangy sweet bright pink berries.

These pink blueberry plants that I have are growing at about 3 times the rate of the blue blueberry plants I have. They take some patience at the beginning to allow them to get established but once they do then they produce like crazy.

This variety was introduced in 2005 and named ‘Pink Lemonade’ Blueberry in 2007. Buy it here.

In my garden, the 5 year old Pink Lemonade plants are growing faster and larger than the blue blueberry plants. They have a slightly different shaped leaf, it’s dainty, a little narrower and a bit dusty in colour. It’s more of a frosty green colour rather than the deep green of the regular blueberry leaves.

They are only semi-hardy and can withstand winter temperatures down to 0º C. If you live in an area that usually has long cold winters, then this plant won’t likely survive unless you put effort into over-wintering it in a garage or heated greenhouse.

The plants in my garden have survived several winters with cold snaps that are sometimes colder than 0º C and they’ve kept growing without issues. The cold in this area never lasts very long at any given time so the plants can handle it.

Short term cold snaps should be ok and your plant will survive, but extended periods of cold will likely have a negative effect on the plants and they might die.

Pink Blueberry Facts

  • They do best in zones 4-8
  • Prefer slightly acidic soil pH of 6.1
  • They can grow 4-5 feet high and 3 to 4 feet around
  • They are a full sun plant, needing 6+ hours of direct sun per day
  • They need a lot of water during the fruiting season

Winter Chill Hours

The pink blueberry is a rabbit eye type of blueberry, most rabbit eyes need 500-1000 hours of winter chill time for best results but the pink lemonade only needs 300 hours of of time below 45º F.

Once established they will produce a lot of delicious fruit. After they’re done fruiting in the fall their leaves will turn a bright scarlet red before falling off in early winter as the dormancy stage begins.

Pollination

They are the same as blue blueberries when it comes to pollination. A pink blueberry will pollinate a blue blueberry plant and vice versa.

As with all blueberries they will do much better with ‘friends’ nearby. You must have at least two blueberry plants near each other, ideally of two different varieties for the best pollination. I consider this a great problem because you have to buy more blueberry plants!

One large container has enough space to have two plants together in it. Just remember that once it’s been planted and had time to establish itself they shouldn’t be moved or replanted. They have a very tender root system and can die easily if they are moved without care.

Pink Blueberry Pests

Thankfully when blueberries are planted in a favourable environment they are usually pest free. The best part is that birds in my area don’t recognize the pink blueberries as food, so they don’t eat them. The birds will have completely cleaned off my blue blueberry plants while the pink ones sit there untouched! Hopefully the birds in your area don’t figure it out!

If you have deer in the neighbourhood though, you’ll need to protect your pink blueberry shrubs from them. Bunnies will happily eat your blueberry shrub as well.

Also, the red shiny Scare Tape that glitters in the sun is a great way to deter birds too. It interferes with their internal radar and it makes it hard for them to find where to land on the tree, so they fly to somewhere that’s easier to land.

Another alternative to the Scare Tape is bird repellent disks.They use the same glittering and radar interfering method as the scare tape just with a different look.

Stacy’s Secret for Success: Always buy the largest plant you can afford

The more established this or any plant is when you take it home the better off it will be…and the sooner you’ll see results and a yummy harvest.

Tiny plants need a lot of care and protection in order to thrive and produce fruit. They may be cheaper in the beginning but the chances of it dying are much greater than if you pick a large plant right from the beginning.

I really don’t recommend starting blueberry plants from seed, unless you’re just interested in the amusement of sprouting seeds.

Growing a blueberry shrub from seed is very time consuming and labour intensive. They require a lot of care and it will also be a minimum for 3 years before it will produce fruit, if you can make it survive that long.

It’s best to let the growers and the nurseries do the hard stuff and produce healthy young fruit stock for us to take home once it’s a few years old. It’s more rewarding and much easier when you buy a thriving young plant that’s already well on it’s way to producing delicious fruit. 

I highly recommend adding a few delicious pink blueberry plants to your own unique backyard garden.

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