QUESTION: Do you need two blueberry bushes to produce fruit? Or can you grow them with just one bush and still get some blueberries out of it? I’m not sure if I have room for two bushes, but I guess I could make it work if I had to. – Olivia E
GARDENING CHANNEL REPLIES: No, you don’t technically need two blueberry bushes to produce fruit in most cases. However, you might want them.
Most blueberry cultivars are considered self-pollinating. One of the more popular varieties, rabbiteye blueberries, are one of the few which aren’t self-pollinating.
Be sure to do your research as to which variety of blueberry you’re growing to ensure you know if you must have two blueberry plants or not.
Even if the variety you grow is self-pollinating, blueberries have a difficult time performing the task on their own.
In turn, this reduces the amount of fruit you’ll receive from a single plant. Whereas, if you grow multiple blueberry plants together, they cross-pollinate which should increase both the size of your fruit and overall yield.
Another benefit to planting multiple blueberry bushes of different varieties, is they may set fruit at different times.
This should stagger your harvest which may make picking more manageable. Plus, if you happen to have a late frost, you should only lose one harvest and not all of it.
Finally, whether you’re growing one blueberry bush or many, it’s always wise to invite pollinators to your growing space.
Bees can help single plants trying to self-pollinate perform the task a little easier. Blueberries don’t usually face many issues with pests and diseases.
Therefore, you shouldn’t have much of a reason to use harsh chemicals around your plants. If you have a garden area, be mindful of what you use to treat potential issues of other plants as you want to protect pollinators and not harm them.
If you’re someone who raises bees, you may receive an extra treat at the end of the season. We raise bees, and we’ll receive blueberry honey on occasion from them helping our bushes pollinate.
In summary, depending upon the cultivar of the blueberry bush you grow, you may not need two blueberry bushes for it to produce fruit.
However, having multiple bushes and pollinators around your garden can help increase your overall harvest in quantity and size of the fruit. Consider your growing space to decide if having multiple blueberry bushes is right for you.