Pruning Blueberries

17 Mar

Today I pruned our blueberry bush. Two years ago, our first summer here at this house, we didn’t realize that the very hardy looking bush in the backyard was a blueberry bush. And then one day (truly almost overnight) its little green berries turned into luscious blueberries. For several weeks that summer the bush was laden with the most wonderful fruit. We had hundreds and hundreds of berries. But the next summer, the bush hardly produced any berries at all; and the berries it did have were much smaller than the year before.
Apparently you have to prune a blueberry bush (and an acidic mulch doesn’t hurt either) in order to have a productive blueberry crop.
To learn how to prune blueberries, I watched a video from YouTube. When I finally went out to the bush this morning armed with pruning shears, I found it difficult to chop away at branches that looked dead yet had a little life. What if they would start producing if I just let them grow? But the whole reason for pruning is to cut away the old in order to aerate and nurture the new. In the end, I just cut anything that was questionable.
Lent is a little like pruning a blueberry bush. In the soul-searching, self-sacrificing themes of Lent, we often give up something. I gave up unhealthy eating. At first, it felt like loss. I love salty, fried food. I crave chocolate. I live for cheese and crackers. It has been six weeks now that I have been eating healthy and I find I’m losing my cravings. And the healthy food that seemed so inadequate in the beginning is now becoming the food I actually do want.
By getting rid of the old habits I’m starting to nurture better habits. Who would have thought? Do you have an experience of giving up something you loved? Write a comment, I’d love to hear from you.

See you in the pews! Jane






Posted by on March 17, 2012 in Blogging With Jane


3 responses to “Pruning Blueberries

  1. Rich Pleva

    March 17, 2012 at 8:39 pm

    A year and a half ago I pruned our peach tree. Three years ago it was loaded with fruit two years ago – nothing! I was brutal in cutting it back – it felt AWFUL!! Last year was a growing back year and it appears (much too early, but that’s another story) that’s it prepared to be loaded with blossoms this spring. I’m hopeful!

  2. Gail Lawlor

    March 19, 2012 at 9:52 am

    Nice metaphor. If you would like to add raspberries to your berry crop, I could give you some shoots this spring.

  3. John

    March 20, 2012 at 11:21 am

    I hope all the good weather this early won’t impact the crop, after your careful pruning.


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