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Anyone grow cranberries at home?

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Papuli Oct 10, 2012 04:37 PM

I'm actually looking to interview someone about this, but also, any tips or expertise to share on growing cranberries non-commercially?

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    gimlis1mum RE: Papuli Jan 30, 2013 03:57 PM

    Wish I had some tips for you, my cranberries have not done very well.

    2 Replies
    1. re: gimlis1mum
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      sr44 RE: gimlis1mum Jan 30, 2013 04:15 PM

      Because?...

      1. re: sr44
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        gimlis1mum RE: sr44 Jan 31, 2013 07:24 PM

        I don't really know why. I put a couple plants in on one side of the house, that were lost when we re-did the driveway. But, they weren't really thriving - they didn't get very big after 3 years and I only ever harvested a handful of cranberries.

        I put 10 more (very small) plants into my new side garden on the opposite die of the house last spring and they didn't grow very much this year - in contrast to pretty much everything else, which grew like gangbusters. (We put a foot of compost down as the top layer in a retaining wall rebuild project).

        So different sides of the house, somewhat different amounts of sun (more in the new garden than next to the old driveway), and different soils (low-pH New England loam vs. rich compost). I did spread a little sand around the plants in the new garden, hoping that would encourage them, but last fall's hurricane washed most of it away.

        It might be a case of misplaced expectations - I'd thought that cranberries would make a nice ground cover in my fruit & edibles garden. But the grow habit is kind of long & spindly; maybe they just grow that way are are slower to fill in than I'd hoped.

    2. OCEllen RE: Papuli Feb 1, 2013 12:55 PM

      They absolutely need acid soil to produce.

      1. earthygoat RE: Papuli Feb 3, 2013 01:27 PM

        Cranberries thrive in moist and acidic peat bogs. It's almost impossible to replicate those conditions at home.

        4 Replies
        1. re: earthygoat
          coll RE: earthygoat Feb 7, 2013 03:43 AM

          Yeah, I thought they had to grow in actual water? The wild ones around here you have to wade out to pick.

          1. re: coll
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            Papuli RE: coll Feb 7, 2013 12:32 PM

            They actually grow on shrubs, too. Though they take much longer and have a much lower yield.

            1. re: Papuli
              coll RE: Papuli Feb 7, 2013 01:56 PM

              Good to know, maybe next time I won't need my wading boots....hoping to come across some beach plums in the general vicinity too!

              1. re: Papuli
                earthygoat RE: Papuli Feb 8, 2013 02:10 PM

                I think you may be referring to the "high bush cranberry", which isn't a true cranberry and a different species altogether. I've never tried high bush cranberries, but supposedly the North American variety is tasty and the European kind is bitter.

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            skier RE: Papuli Feb 8, 2013 05:50 PM

            I spent some time trying to find some varieties of cranberry that grow in Vermont and didn't have much luck. do you have any idea where to find plants to grow?

            1 Reply
            1. re: skier
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              gimlis1mum RE: skier Feb 8, 2013 06:49 PM

              The ones I bought last year were from Fedco, who has growers in Maine. Forget where I got the others, probably Stark Bros...?

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