Growing Cranberries at the Allotment

Growing Cranberries at the Allotment

Cranberries are not just for Christmas, and they are packed with Vitamin C, making lovely juices and healthy snacks throughout the season.

Cranberries tend to be planted from cuttings or young plants rather than seeds and take a few years to become established before producing fruit.

After the last frosts in spring you can plant Cranberry plants out. Cranberries need a totally weed-free spot in the soil; dig a hole approximately 6-8 inches deep, removing all the weed roots too. Allow a good 2 feet perimeter for this spreading plant to grow. Water well but not so it is water-logged and add some sand, some blood and bone meal and high nitrogen fertilizer before planting your Cranberry plant approximately 2 inches deep.

Keep the soil moist with regular watering until the plant becomes established; it is worth mulching it too, to retain moisture.

You can also grow Cranberry plants in large containers, although they will do better in the ground.  After a few years and then subsequently every few years, cut away dead wood; not the main fruiting stems and trim runners as well, to encourage fruit production.

When you can finally harvest berries, pick them before the first frost of the autumn, your plant will require protection over the colder months with fleece, or heavily mulch which can be removed again in spring.

Cranberries can be stored in an airtight container, refrigerated for a couple of months and turned into juices, chutneys and can be eaten fresh in salads or dried for a healthy snack.

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Growing Cranberries in Summary

Planting Cranberries

  • Best planted directly in good soil conditions
  • Planted from cuttings or young plants
  • Allow room for spreading

Growing Cranberries

  • Keep well-watered until established
  • Mulch well, cut away dead wood
  • Protect from frost and colder weather

Harvesting Cranberries

  • Pick fruits from 3rd year onwards
  • Pick before first frost of autumn
  • Can be eaten fresh, dried or stored for juices and chutneys