A member of the fragrant honeysuckle family and native to western North America, honeyberries ripen in early spring as 1" blue-purple seedless berries. Berry flavor is noticeably similar to blueberries and is wonderful for fresh eating or making preserves. Honeyberries have higher a higher level of antioxidants that blueberries and are tolerant of most soils.
Plant at least two different varieties to ensure good fruit production. Prune after fruiting is over, in late winter while plants are dormant, before buds swell. Pruning encourages new, vigorous growth which will be the fruit-producing wood the following season. Provide steady watering to young bushes, as roots are shallow. Feed plants twice annually in early spring and after fruiting, with a well-balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer.
Plants start producing at a very young age, and reach full production by year 3. Honeyberries fruit very early in the season, a few weeks before strawberries. Picking lasts for 2-3 weeks. For the sweetest fruits, pick berries when fully dark blue in color. Berries can be eaten fresh or stored frozen.