Do Blueberries Have Seeds?
Blueberries are a category of perennial flowering plants with blue or purple berries that are extensively dispersed and ubiquitous. Within the genus Vaccinium, they are categorised under the section Cyanococcus. Cranberries, bilberries, and huckleberries are all members of the same genus. All commercial blueberries are native to North America, both wild (lowbush) and cultivated (highbush).
Does blueberries have seeds? Yes! Inside each tiny blueberry, you can find even more tiny seeds. Blueberry seeds are contained inside the fruit, rather than externally like botanical berries (which aren’t truly berries) such as strawberries.
Blueberry bushes can grow wild or be cultivated at home, and perhaps you are interested in growing your own. Being one of the healthiest fruits around, the health conscious among you may be hoping to grow enough berries for a fully homemade smoothie or muffin recipe.
These tasty fruits can be store bought or picked wild (subject to the laws of your local area of course), and no matter what you’ll come away with more than enough seeds for some blueberry seedlings. Your average blueberry fruit batch will get your garden started, for future healthy eating!
Why do Blueberries Have Seeds?
Blueberries contain seeds as they are a fruit, as are all blueberry varieties. Fruit grows from a plant’s blossom, whereas the rest of the plant is classified as a vegetable. The definition and distinction of fruit and vegetable can vary depending on whether you ask a gardener or a chef.
A boatanist will tell you a tomato is a fruit for example, growing from a flowering ovary and containing seeds. For cooks, tomatos have been used as vegetables since time immemorable. Seeds from blueberries are contained in the berry, and the berries themselves form from the blossom of a bush.
Lowbush blueberries, also known as wild blueberries, flow in much the same way as cultivated blueberry bushes. Mature blueberry plants are the best way to get viable blueberry seeds. you can get seed from blueberries which are store bought however.
Despite their small size, you can get as many as fifty seeds per blueberry! That’s right, so many tiny seeds are packed into a ripe blueberry that you can grow delicious berries for years, and grow food for decades. There are more than forty species of vaccinium shrubs (blueberry bushes) so you’re spoilt for choice.
Nutritional Benefits of Blueberries
As far as antioxidant foods go, blueberries are a bit of a super food. These succulent berries are jam packed with goodness, helping you live a healthy lifestyle and a tasty treat at the same time. However, you should be careful if you’re not store buying berries.
Edible berries in the wild can look similar to toxic ones. Always ensure proper care is taken to identify a plant before you harvest it, and make sure to follow the local or regional laws regarding berry picking and wild harvesting. In some states and Canadian provinces, it can be illegal.
With so many seeds per berry, not ingesting the pea sized berries and instead using them to gather seeds is a fine alternative. When picking blueberry shrubs, you should avoid the small green berry that blueberries begin as. These will not contain seeds.
Riper and overripe blueberries will have seeds prevalent, and they tend to make more tasty foods. Not yet mature berries are not the same super food you can buy in your local supermarket, so always exercise caution with them.
Learn more here about the Top 17 Vegan Protein Snacks.
Are Blueberry Seeds Safe to Eat?
You’ll be glad to know that blueberry seeds are perfectly safe for human ingestion. While apple seeds contain cyanide (thankfully in small enough a dose that it can never harm a human), there is nothing alarming contained in a blueberry.
This can be relieving information, now you know just how many blueberry seeds you could be ingesting with each tasty berry. If frozen, thawed blueberries will still have delicious and nutritious seeds ready to be enjoyed by you at home.
We also made an article about Are Nature Valley Bars Healthy. This snack has a blueberry variant, find it here!
How to Separate Blueberry Seeds
Before you get to blueberry seed planting, you will need to freeze some blueberries. This will end their seed dormancy after three months, after which thawed blueberries can be blended or put into a food processor or other grinder with blueberries. This will separate seeds from the blueberry pulp.
If you are using store bought berries, then make sure to check you aren’t buying seedless blueberry. Details such as these may seem like common sense or knowledge, but can be easily missed in the middle of a larger shop. Take note to avoid heartbreak when you get home.
Then, using paper towels, prepare the seeds for germination. Covering the seeds in damp paper towels and refrigerating for a few days will get them ready to germinate, and then you can prepare them for a nursery pot for early growth.
Fill a small box with ground sphagnum moss if possible. Sphagnum peat moss is an ideal and nutrient rich plant bedding for the early stages of your blueberry bush’s life span. Soil quality can directly influence how long your bush lives, and how bountiful its yields will be, so you can get a bumper blueberry harvest.
Blueberry Seed Planting
Blueberry seed planting can be a fun hobby, although arduous. Once you have separated the seeds and ended their dormancy, you will need to find a sunny spot where they have good access to acidic soils, oxygen, and moist soil.
Keeping your soil moist is important as blueberries enjoying a lot of water. If you haven’t got appropriate soil, then you can make your own mixture. One third part soil, another sand, and a final one third part peat is more than ideal bedding for your budding bushes.
Adding an extra layer of fertiliser or mulch can also prevent fluctuations in soil moisture, and the growth of harmful weeds. Before fully planting in your garden, use nursery pots to encourage a healthy seedling. When the nursery plant is a couple inches tall, it can be transplanted.
Blueberry seed plants require great care, but bushes are generally more resistant. If you see your blueberry leaves turn red, then it is a sign of poor soil quality, and you may have to uproot and move the bush before it dies completely.
Read our next article here: Which Seeds To Soak Before Planting