About Huckleberries

Overview

Huckleberries are flavorful berries that remind many consumers of blueberries. They are native to the United States and have not yet been commercialized, though huckleberries have been placed in gardens. Horticulturalists are working hard to develop versions of huckleberries that can be grown in commercial settings. They are often collected from the wild recreationally.

Identification

The flowers of a huckleberry look like the flowers of blueberries bushes. Instead of producing clusters of berries, huckleberry flowers produce single berries. Blue huckleberries also look like blueberries.

Geography

Huckleberries are native to eastern and southeastern parts of the United States. As of 2010, they were not domesticated. They can only be harvested in the wild. Huckleberries are often picked recreationally. Black huckleberries usually grow on acidic, sandy loam soils. They often begin growing 10 years after an area is burned out. They do not survive well in heavily shaded areas. Blue huckleberries usually grow in wetter areas. They often emerge from rotten wood.

Benefits

Huckleberries are desired due to their flavors, which are considered similar but better than blueberries due to their richness and sweetness. Some find these huckleberries too strongly flavored. Nutritionally, huckleberries are high in vitamin C, potassium and dietary fiber. One cup of huckleberries has 81 calories.

Warning

Finding huckleberries is difficult and these huckleberries must be picked by hand, since machinery is often difficult and impractical to move to huckleberry locations. Some individuals choose to move huckleberries from the wild to their gardens, where they attempt to grow them. When huckleberries are found blossoming, the huckleberry blossoms are very vulnerable to frost, which can easily destroy them. They survive better in elevated areas. These blossoms can be protected by tarps and other coverings. Those picking huckleberries in the wild should be careful of weather conditions and bears.

Gardening

Huckleberry seeds are extracted from their berries by squashing the berries. The seeds can be extracted from the pulp by putting the pulp in a strainer and rising water over the pulp. The seeds usually pass through strainers. Huckleberries are best grown in January within a house or a greenhouse. Water-soluble fertilizer added every two weeks will increase the health of the huckleberries. Prepare soil for huckleberries by adding sawdust or bark. Huckleberry plants are best transported from the house to the garden when they are 6 inches tall.

Keywords: huckleberry seeds, water-soluble fertilizer, blue huckleberries, black huckleberries, sandy loam

About this Author

Charles Pearson has written as a freelancer for two years. He has a B.S. in Literature from Purdue University Calumet and is currently working on his M.A. He has written three ebooks so far: Karate You Can Teach Your Kids, Macadamia Growing Handout and The Raw Food Diet.