Blueberry Facts

Blueberry Facts
Blueberry is a flowering plant that belongs to the family Ericacae. This plant originates from North America, but it can be found on almost all continents today. Blueberry prefers colder climate and it grows on the sandy, acidic soil. Wild species of blueberry tolerate drought and fire. Certain types of blueberries produce more fruit after forest fire. According to some studies, blueberry has been part of human diet at least 13 000 years. They are known as one of the healthiest types of fruit which can prevent development of numerous diseases. Besides beneficial effect on the health, humans cultivate blueberries because of their ornamental morphology.
Interesting Blueberry Facts:
Blueberries grow in the form of bush. Depending on the size, they can be divided in two groups: highbush and lowbush blueberries. Lowbush blueberries, also known as wild blueberries, are usually 3.9 inches tall. Highbush blueberries can reach 13 feet in height.
Depending on the variety, blueberries have either deciduous or evergreen leaves. They are oval or lanceolate in shape. Deciduous plants change color of the leaves seasonally. Light green foliage is characteristic for the spring, red for the fall.
Blueberry has bell-shaped flower. It can be white, pink or red in color. Flower contains both male (stamens) and female (pistil) reproductive organs.
Honeybees and bumblebees are main pollinators of blueberries.
Fruit of blueberry belongs to the group of berries. It changes the color from greenish to reddish to dark purple when it ripens. Blueberry is rare example of food that is naturally blue in color.
Blueberry is rich source dietary fibers and vitamins C, K, A, E and vitamins of the B group. It also contains valuable minerals such as iron, manganese, phosphorus and potassium.
Blueberries are usually sold fresh, frozen or dried. They can be consumed raw or in the form of sweet desserts such as blueberry pie.
Blueberries are used for the production of juices, jellies, jams and breakfast cereals.
Blueberries are used in the manufacture of delicious and healthy blueberry wine.
Blueberries produced from the highbush varieties are mostly used fresh. Blueberries produced from the lowbush varieties are often used in food processing.
Blueberries are rich in antioxidants that prevent inflammation. Some studies indicate that blueberries may prevent development of certain types of cancer.
Studies on rats showed that blueberries control blood pressure and reduce brain damage after experimentally induced stroke.
Blueberries improve memory and motor skills. They are known as anti-aging fruit because they delay senescence of cells.
USA is the greatest manufacturer of blueberries in the world. More than 500 million pounds of blueberries are produced in the USA each year.
Lifespan of blueberry depends on the variety and environmental conditions. Under ideal conditions, blueberry can survive up to 60 years.

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