Herb: Kamchatka Bilberry


Latin name: Vaccinium praestans


Family: Ericaceae (Heath Family)



Edible parts of Kamchatka Bilberry:

Fruit - raw or cooked. The taste is sweet and fragrant, somewhat like a strawberry. A delicious flavour. The fruit is about 12mm in diameter.

Description of the plant:



Plant:
Deciduous
Shrub

Height:
15 cm
(6 inches)

Flovering:
June

Habitat of the herb:

Mossy bogs, swampy woods (often on rotting fallen tree trunks), elevated places and slopes in northern Asia.

Other uses of Kamchatka Bilberry:

A good ground cover for cool moist shady areas.

Propagation of the herb:

Seed - sow late winter in a greenhouse in a lime-free potting mix and only just cover the seed. Stored seed might require a period of up to 3 months cold stratification. Another report says that it is best to sow the seed in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe. Once they are about 3cm tall, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts. Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 8cm with a heel, August in a frame. Slow and difficult. Layering in late summer or early autumn. Another report says that spring is the best time to layer. Takes 18 months. Division of suckers in spring or early autumn. Larger divisions can be planted out direct into their permanent positions, but we have found that in general it is best to pot up smaller divisions and grow them on in light shade in a greenhouse or cold frame until they are growing away well. Plant them out in the summer or the following spring.

Cultivation of Kamchatka Bilberry:

Mossy bogs, swampy woods (often on rotting fallen tree trunks), elevated places and slopes in northern Asia.

Medicinal use of the herb:

None known

Known hazards of Vaccinium praestans:

None known

Plant information taken from the Plants For A Future.