Honeyberries (also called Haskap) are a species of edible honeysuckle bush, native to the cool-temperate to boreal regions of the northern hemisphere, including Canada, Russia, and Japan. Honeyberries are easy to grow and very cold-hardy; the plants withstand -55 F, while the flowers tolerate temperatures as low as 20 F. The bushes can live 50+ years, reliably producing nutritious, oblong blue berries as many as two weeks before June strawberries. This makes it one of the very earliest fruits available for our region.
Honeyberry bushes can be expected to grow in a relatively neat, non-suckering sphere shape, approximately 4-5' tall and wide. They are not picky about soil type, and can tolerate partial shade (with some reduction in fruit). While some varieties are partially self-fertile, two genetically different varieties are recommended for fruit production.
The varieties of honeyberry we are growing include:
Indigo Gem - Early variety, produces large berries that are sweet and somewhat tangy, with a slightly chewy texture. One of the most preferred fresh-eating varieties.
Indigo Treat - Later-ripening than 'Indigo Gem', also produces large sweet berries. Good disease resistance and heat tolerance.
Blue Bell - Vigorous, upright bush produces medium size berries very early - this is our earliest ripening variety. This variety is especially good for pollinating either of the 'Indigo' cultivars.