Companion plants around blueberries

Asked October 5, 2018, 3:08 PM EDT

I planted 3 blueberries. Until the plants grow they take up a lot of garden space. I was wondering about planting a companion to take advantage of the empty space and maybe to keep unwanted "predators/disease vectors" away. Someone said that blueberries had shallow but extensive root systems and didn't do well with competition from other plants close by. What do you recommend? Shall my bluebs remain lonely until mature?

Benton County Oregon

1 Response

You are correct that blueberries have shallow roots and don't like a lot of competition for water and nutrients. They also have a specific soil pH requirement that may narrow down the list of plants that are able to grow in similar conditions. That being said, if you can keep the area nearest the plant free of weeds and competition, all plants benefit from flowers blooming nearby to attract pollinators.
Blueberries bloom according to the variety at different times in the spring - which can correspond with native blooming plants and some spring blooming annuals or perennials. At our home we have the blueberries in the rose bed. Planted several feet apart and with good sun and regular irrigation, we are able to mulch the blueberries according to their needs and the roses also thrive. The most important siting detail, at least in our yard, is that they are both behind the deer fence. And the bed is bordered with low-growing blooming flowers.
Attached is a great document (you can download the PDF or view online) with many more blueberry growing hints.