Legacy BlueberryVaccinium corymbosum 'Legacy' (PP# 15,146)
View more from Blueberry Bushes
30 day - ARRIVE AND THRIVE™ guaranteeLearn more
Probiotic Root Stimulant
Vaccinium corymbosum 'Legacy' (PP# 15,146)
Outdoor Growing zone
Full Sun, Partial Sun
The Legacy Blueberry is both a very late-ripening northern highbush blueberry that extends the season for fresh berries, and also one of the best-flavored blueberries available. Together these qualities make it highly desirable, grown alone or as part of a collection. It is also a handsome shrub, with attractive white spring flowers and brilliant red fall color, so you can grow it among your flowering shrubs, without needing a special area. It grows well in containers if you don’t have the necessary type of soil for blueberries.
The Legacy Blueberry will grow best in full sun or a little partial shade. Plant it in moist, well-drained soil, although this variety, once established, is more heat and drought resistant than most others. The soil must have a pH value between 4.5 and 5.5, so if you don’t have that, plant it in a large tub or container, using acidic compost you can easily mix at home.
Not only are blueberries the second most popular berry fruit in America, they are attractive and ornamental bushes you can grow among your flowering shrubs, so they are ideal if you don’t have the space or inclination to create a special fruit garden. The period when the berries are ripe on any one bush is short, though, so if you want a long season of fresh berries, you should plant varieties that ripen at different times. This is where the Legacy Blueberry steps into the picture. It ripens its fruit at the very end of the season, after other varieties have finished. And that’s not all. Considered the best-tasting blueberry variety, the sweet and rich flavor will make this berry a big favorite in your house, especially for eating fresh, although it’s just as good in a pie, or for preserves, where its special flavor will come shining through.
The Legacy Blueberry is a northern highbush blueberry. It is a medium-sized deciduous shrub reaching 6 feet tall and wide. In fall the leaves turn bright red making a great show and making it worthy of being grown right among your garden plants. It blooms in spring, with pink buds in clusters that open into small, hanging white flowers, shaped like urns. The berries ripen towards the end of the blueberry season, in late July and into August in most areas. The medium-sized berries are bright blue and sweet, with a pronounced ‘blueberry’ flavor, so they are excellent eaten fresh, and they shine in baked goods too. Blueberries are one of the healthiest fruits, because they are full of vitamins and minerals, as well as a special group of antioxidants called bioflavonoids, known to fight inflammation.
You can grow this bush in your shrub beds, because it is very attractive, with pretty blooms and bright fall colors. This means that you can grow it in a smaller garden, even if you don’t have the space for a dedicated food growing area. It can be grown as a screen, planted in a row, spacing the plants 4 feet apart, or planted alone, or in a small group, in your beds. If you don’t have suitable garden soil, plant it in a container, where it can be kept on a patio or terrace.
The Legacy Blueberry is hardy in at least zone 5, and probably, like other northern highbush types, in zone 4 as well. It has superior resistance to heat and drought, so it is also suitable for zone 8, where most other northern highbush varieties don’t do well.
Grow your bush in full sun, or a spot that has no more than a few hours of shade each day. The soil should be moist but well-drained, and acidic, with a pH between 4.5 and 5.5. This bush is more heat and drought tolerant than many other varieties, but it is still best to water it regularly – it just means that if it should get dry for a while you won’t lose the crop or damage your bush. Water young plants regularly, as drought resistance develops with maturity.
The simplest solution, if your soil is not acidic enough, is to grow your blueberry bushes in large planters or pots. These must have drainage holes. Make a suitable soil mixture, starting with potting soil for acid-loving plants, such as azaleas. Blend that in equal parts with sphagnum peat moss and shredded pine bark (1:1:1) and fill your planters with that mixture. Mulch the pot surface with more shredded bark, and water regularly.
You will harvest a good crop from just one plant of the Legacy Blueberry, because it is self-pollinating. If you do plant other northern highbush varieties nearby, all of them will benefit from that and give you even bigger yields.
During the first growing season, remove any flowers to encourage the bush to grow and not ‘waste’ its limited energy on making berries. There is no need to prune for the first three seasons, but after that you should shorten back the strongest branches in winter and remove weak branches, and those that grow low down in the bush. Besides regular watering, this bush doesn’t need a lot of care, and it is normally not bothered by pests or diseases. The use of blueberry fertilizer will improve the growth of your bushes and the size and quality of your crop, especially when growing them in pots.
The northern highbush blueberry, Vaccinium corymbosum, is native to much of the eastern parts of Canada and the USA. It can be found growing from Nova Scotia all the way down to Florida and across into Texas. The fruit was as popular with Native Americans as it is with us, and in many areas they burned the forests to clear space for blueberry bushes to grow more vigorously, so that they could harvest more. Wild berries are also eaten by bears and many species of birds. Many varieties have been created for both commercial growing and home gardeners. The variety called ‘Liberty’ was developed in a breeding program by James Hancock, a renowned blueberry breeder, and professor of horticulture in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and AgBioResearch at Michigan State University. In 1991 he took pollen from a variety called ‘Elliot’, perhaps the latest ripening variety available, and used it to fertilize a variety bred in Australia called ‘Brigetta`. He had 54 seedlings from this cross, and in 1997 he selected one which was the most valuable. It was named ‘Legacy’ and patented in 2004, with proceeds going to further research at Michigan State.
Growing a late-ripening variety is the best way to extend your blueberry season. With the Legacy Blueberry you can do that with a berry that also has superb flavor and quality, and one that is more heat and drought tolerant than most others. This variety is always in high demand, so order now, or we won’t have the plants available to fulfill your order.