[NAFEX] whortleberry (Vaccinium myrtillus)

Melissa Kacalanos mijwiz at yahoo.com
Mon Apr 5 10:16:03 EDT 2010

We planted some blueberries and lingonberries last year, and they did great. We apparently got the acidity right. My husband is so encouraged by this success that now he wants us to try whortleberries, Vaccinium myrtillus. He wants these because he got a very tasty jar of whortleberry jam imported from France.

By googling around, I see that practically every species in the Vaccinium genus is called "whortleberry" by someone, so I don't really know what species was in this jar. I'm assuming it was V. myrtillus, because it grows in France. Also, the jam was almost black, and V. myrtillus is dark blue or purple all the way through, not just on the skin like blueberries. Hence one of their common names, "Black-hearts." That sounds really cool anyway, and it's probably full of antioxidants.

But is anyone selling V. myrtillus plants? I see a few places selling seeds, but plants would be faster. This place lists plants:
with no price, and it's hard to tell if the nursery is still in business. They might just be too busy to update their website I suppose. I emailed them yesterday and got no reply.

Hartmann's is selling a plant they're calling 'Eagle' Bilberry, but their paper catalog says it's a V. uliginosum, not V. myrtillus. I'm sure V. uliginosum is tasty too, but I read that it's white inside, not dark purple like V. myrtillus.


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