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Japanese Blueberry Tree Pros And Cons You Need To Know

Japanese Blueberry tree is popular for its glossy foliage, attractive blossoms, and unique beads, but you must be aware of the plant’s pros and cons as it might be unfit for some habitats.

Generally, the Japanese Blueberry tree is a moderately growing hardy tree with high drought and salt tolerance, suitable to beautify versatile landscapes. However, the tree can also make your garden messy and susceptible to various pests and diseases.

The Japanese Blueberry tree (Elaeocarpus decipiens) is an amazing ornamental plant that thrives best in USDA zone 8 through 11.

Before adding it to your outdoor garden, go through this complete article to learn the Japanese Blueberry tree’s pros and cons.

Japanese Blueberry Tree Growth Rate

Japanese Blueberry tree is a medium grower and can grow well in full sun to partial shade.

When the plant is young, it has a relatively faster growth rate. When you plant a young Japanese Blueberry seedling, it can grow about 2 meters per year for the first few years.

Japanese Blueberry tree white flowers
Flowers of Japanese Blueberry are beautiful but can become messy after they fall.

Upon maturity, you won’t see this tree growing as much as it used to. The growth occurs about 35-40 inches per year in older trees.

It’s because the tree focuses on storing energy and making its trunks and branches strong as it grows older.

However, the growth also depends on the environmental condition, disease invasion, and pruning. The healthy and frequently pruned tree has a relatively faster growth rate.

Japanese Blueberry Tree Pros And Cons

The Japanese Blueberry tree is a very adaptive and disease-resistant tree. You can also use this tree to decorate urban landscapes like street sides, parks, and other polluted areas.

However, you have to make sure to monitor the tree’s condition regularly as it is vulnerable to pests and diseases like scales, mites, powdery mildew, etc.

Japanese Blueberry Tree Advantages

Japanese Blueberry tree bears beautiful foliage and even retains them in the fall. So, if you want beauty to remain in your garden for a whole year, planting this tree is a good choice.

  • This hardy tree can tolerate various soil types like loam, sand, clay, etc. However, the soil must be well-draining.
  • You can even grow this tree in coastal areas due to the high salt tolerance.
  • This ornamental tree can beautify every type of landscaping design.
  • You can prune the tree in your desired shape to fit in your garden without worrying about its tolerance.
  • The small pink or white flowers with pleasant aroma can add freshness to your garden’s aroma while making it look incredible.
  • Also, the small blue fruits can attract various wildlife, making your garden full of life.
  • The tree provides unique beads called rudraksha, which is used by Hindus to worship lord Shiva.

Japanese Blueberry Tree Disadvantages

Although the Japanese Blueberry tree has great ornamental value, it grows slowly. So, if you are thinking of having a big tree in your garden for a short duration, Japanese Blueberry is not a good choice.

  • As Japanese Blueberry is an evergreen tree, the leaves may fall for a whole year. This may require frequent efforts to clean your garden.
  • Moreover, the fruits may ripen and fall off, making the garden ground messy.
  • The fallen fruits may also attract various pests that spread harmful diseases. It may be problematic for the whole garden.
  • These trees are generally hardy but have a very low tolerance to cold, making them unsuitable for colder regions.
  • Although the plant is drought-resistant, you need to water it frequently during dry periods, especially during young age.
  • If you leave the plant unpruned, the tree height may exceed, making the garden unappealing.

Japanese Blueberry Tree Care

While planting a Japanese Blueberry tree, ensure you select a sunny location with well-draining soil. If possible, amend the soil with compost for better growth.

  • Water your Japanese Blueberry tree frequently when young whenever the soil feels 2 inches dry.
  •  During the dry season, mulch around the base of the tree to retain moisture.
  • Use a frost blanket to protect the tree from excessive cold during winter.
  • Use balanced fertilizer to feed your Japanese Blueberry during the growing season.
  • Clean the fallen fruits and leaves to avoid the risk of unwanted pests and diseases.
  • If you notice any pests or disease invasion, prune the damaged parts and use neem oil, pesticides, and fungicides.
  • Trim the lateral branches before new growth occurs to maintain the desired shape and aesthetic of your garden.

From Editorial Team

Additional Information!

Besides ornamental benefits, the Japanese Blueberry tree is also a valuable medicinal plant used traditionally in Ayurveda due to the plant’s antioxidant and anti-inflammatory activities.

However, the pollen from the flower can be allergic to people with sensitive skin. So, make sure you know your skin type to save yourself from infections, rashes, etc.