The Cranberry is currently very popular in the form of juices and dried fruits. In spite of its preference for a very moist acid soil, it seems to do quite well in containers if kept well watered (with rain water if possible) in the summer. It does best in full sun and having a very prostrate habit it scrambles and roots where it goes. Pretty pale pink flowers and dark red fruits.
Ours are the wild American type, cultivated forms can now be got quite easily in some garden centres, but we find ours are hardy and pest resistant producing reasonable sized fruit. In America they are harvested in the autumn with a sort of large wooden comb, or on a commercial scale the beds are flooded and the fruit somehow floated away and corralled. We can usually pick all we need for a bit of jelly, or a source by hand but it is a bit fiddly.
We also have a few plants of the native species of Cranberry, (Vaccinium oxycoccus) available. Not so useful in the fruit production department but great for your bog or wildlife garden, or even your rockery if the soil is lime free. It's a much more delicate plant altogether, looking for all the world like a miniature version its American cousin...
(More pictures on our facebook page)
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