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How To Prune Blueberries
Selection of a training system will help guide how you prune your blueberries. Many fruit gardeners prefer to retain two to three main canes that will anchor the bush’s fruit production. Young blueberries are carefully trained to maintain close base at the root crown and an open center to
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allow sunlight to pass through and allow air movement.
  1. Visually observe the blueberry bush.
  2. Imagine what the plant should look like when pruning is completed.
  3. All diseased and broken canes should be removed first.
  4. Canes that are seven years old or older should be considered for removal.
  5. No more than two to three mature canes should be removed each year to avoid pruning out too many fruit buds.
  6. Selective pruning will help to stimulate new cane growth each year.
  7. Remove branches that are touching and any dead twigs.
  8. The bush should be: a) narrow at base, b) open in the center, and c) free of vegetative clutter.
Shoots harden-off as canes with a grayish-brown color and will be approximately pencil size or greater in diameter. Normally, fruiting buds are not counted on blueberry bushes to determine the maximum fruit load.
Remember, if you prune too much this year, in a couple of years the growth will return.   You might slow yield down for a year or two, but you really can't kill the bush by incorrect pruning.
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