Thursday, April 14, 2016


Rather than give you recipes for blueberries I thought these little tidbits from various states might spark some thoughts for some of your stories. Enjoy!

Blueberries and cranberries. The blueberries and cranberries, of which there are about eleven varieties in the state, include some well-known forms. Here are to be classified the bog huckleberry, the dwarf bilberry, the thin-leafed bilberry, the tall bilberry, the tall blueberry, the Canada blueberry, the low blueberry, the mountain cranberry or cowberry, the deerberry, the small and the large cranberry. Most of these are found only in the northern part the state, especially along the international boundary and the north side of Lake Superior, extending, as so many northern plants do, down the valley of the St. Croix, through which in early days Lake Superior drained into the Mississippi river.
Blueberries. The different kinds of blueberries or bilberries are to be discriminated by their foliage and by the flavor of the berries. The one most common is the dwarf or low blueberry, gathered in large quantities for the market. Its fruits are blue with a whitish bloom and are of very pleasant flavor, enjoyed alike by the Indians and the whites. The plant is a low shrub, with pale green leaves, not evergreen. Its flowers are vase-shaped, small, and white or pink.
The deerberry, which resembles the blueberry in some respects, is considerably larger—three or four feet in height. The berries, shaped like the blueberries, are greenish or yellow and not edible. This variety is also called the squaw huckleberry.
The Canada blueberry, found growing in much moister soil than the ordinary form, has smaller berries, of a blue color, with a bloom. It may be distinguished by the entire margins of the leaves, quite different from the notched margins of the low blueberry. The bog blueberry has pink flowers and small ovate leaves. The cowberry may be recognized by the sour red berries and the evergreen leaves. The flowers and fruits are in structure altogether similar to those of the blueberries.
Source: Minnesota Plant Life ©1899

New Hampshire
The Benton Range.
In the W. part of the town of Benton, and running nearly N. and S., is the chain of peaks which includes Owl's Head, Blueberry Mt., Hogsback Mt., Sugar Loaf, and Black Mt. Though not remarkable for altitude or mass, these summits are otherwise picturesque and interesting, and may be visited without great labor. The same town also contains the famous Moosilauke, another Black Mt. (now called Mt. Clough), and a part of the Blue Ridge. There are no accommodations for tourists here, and people who wish to explore the Benton Range must start out from Warren, Haverhill, or Newbury. The hotels at the latter points are better than that at Warren, and the difference in distance is small. Benton has but 375 inhabitants, and is famous for its quartz crystals and other minerals and ores.
Owl's Head is a spur of Blueberry Mt. to the S. W., and is faced by a fine preoipice, several hundred ft. high, of purple and other dark-hued rocks. Thousands of bushels of blueberries are gathered yearly on this ridge. The ascent is made from the highway, near Warren Summit, and is steep, but short. A vague path conducts through the lower thickets, and along the face of the ridge which looks off on the cliffs. Large crystals of epidote are found about the cliff.
Blueberry Mountain is the name given to the fine peak N. of and above Owl's Head. It may be easily ascended from Owl's Head in less thaii an hour, although a quicker route for tourists who do not care to visit the latter summit is to go up the N.-Benton road to a point about 7 M. from Warren, and then strike up the E. flank. For about 1 M. from the summit the mountain is free from trees and is covered with alternate bands of carpet-like moss and granite ledges moderately inclined. The work of ascent and exploration is thus rendered easy and pleasant. There is but a slight depression between Owl's Head and Blueberry Mt., the former being a bold spur of the latter rather than a detached mountain. On the highest point of Blueberry Mt. is a signal-beacon of the U. S. Coast Survey (2,800 ft. above the sea).
Source: The White Mountains ©1876

Dwarf Blueberry, Low Blueberry. Six inches to two feet high, usually forming straggling masses in dry woods and old fields. Common, and well known throughout the southeastern parts of the state. Fruit abundant, blue or black. The earliest blueberry of the markets.
Canada Blueberry. A straggling shrub, stouter than the preceding, which it resembles. Leaves and branches downy. Berries often oval, blue, somewhat acid. Probably never seen in the markets. Northern part of state.
Half-high Blueberry. Sugar Blueberry. Two or three feet high, with upright, slender, yellowish-green branches. Fruit harder, and keeps longer than that of any other species; usually very round, bright blue, and spicy. It has the most limited range of any of our blueberries. It is common on pine barrens, and sparingly found very near the Connecticut river as far north as the rapids at White River.
High Blueberry. A shrub ten to fifteen feet high, with stems sometimes two inches in diameter. It grows in moist lands and swamps. The wood is hard and very closeSgrained, useful for the handles of small tools. No attempts have been made to cultivate it, although it doubtless could be cultivated to advantage.
Male Blueberry, Stagger Bush. Shrub three or four feet high, with yellowish bark. In the same situations and much resembling the high blueberry, but the fruit a dry, globular pod instead of a berry. Sometimes poisonous to cattle. Southern parts of the state.
Source: The Forests of Vermont ©1886

The culture and improvement of the blueberry is also receiving attention. There are large areas in the State which at present are practically worthless but which with a little attention and the planting of a few hundreds or thousands of blueberry bushes might, in our opinion, be made to yield profitable returns. Again, if the little dry, unsatisfactory June berry is worthy of culture in the garden, and it is cultivated to quite an extent, there certainly seems to be a field for work in developing improved varieties of the much more promising blueberry.
Source: Agriculture of Maine ©1895

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