Tag Archives: fruit

How to tell when blueberries are ripe

Maybe everyone else knows this, but I recently worked out when to pick blueberries. As with a lot of fruit, they come off the bush easily when they’re ripe. If you have to pull hard to get the fruit off the stalk, it’s a sign you should leave it for a few days.

With blueberries, they are so small and numerous that gently pulling at each one to see if it’s ripe is quite time consuming and you can end up damaging the bush in the process. I think I’ve worked out a way to tell just by looking.

Blueberries on the bush

The berry in the top-left has a darkening stalk where it attaches to the fruit, showing it is nearly ripe.

At first I thought the colour of the berry was important, and it is, up to a point. The berries aren’t ready when they’re green or red in colour, but even the blue ones often have some way to go.

What seems to count is the colour of the stalk where it joins the berry. As you can see in the photo above, the stalk will go very dark blue at the berry end, indicating that it’s ready to come off. I’ve now learnt that there’s little point in trying to wrestle them off the bush until the stalk has gone dark.