Japanese Blueberry Tree a Complete Guide

The Japanese blueberry trees, whose scientific name is Elaeocarpus decipiens, are the high growing (approximately 60 feet), low maintenance, and versatile trees belonging to Japan and China.

Captivating for the entire year, these trees are known to provide something or the other in about every season. They provide us with a majestic presence with their appealing Christmas tree look.

The Japanese Blueberry trees draw a lot of attention from people because of their eye-pleasing landscape uses. They are of great choice for landscape decorations and excellent service in too hot or too wet environments as they provide an evergreen luster to the ground. The tree has a blissful accent, but it is underused in hindsight because not many people are aware of this fact.

Insights of Japanese Blueberry Tree:  

The Elaeocarpus is a kind of tree that needs moist and loamy soil to grow. The land on which it is growing should be laid with perfect drainage systems. Salt can hinder the growth of the Japanese Blueberry Trees and hence should be avoided as much as possible.

Although viable in all climatic conditions, the Japanese Blueberry Tree prefers partial to full sun exposure for its full maturation.

The tree is a slow grower that can reach a height of about 60 feet, though it can be kept shorter considering your needs. These trees are known to prefer cooler areas of Florida compared to dry, hot climatic places.

The newly grown trees have an attractive orange-red tinge, which moves on to the emerald green and then to lustrous green. A fully mature tree has leaves with an orange hue, which turns into crimson during the fall season.

The Japanese Blueberry’s ever-changing pattern is added with small, bell-shaped, off-white flowers and some blue, eye-catchy but inedible berries, giving the tree its name. But this colorful view of the Japanese Blueberry Trees is a site of attraction for many birds and other nature’s wildlife.

– Landscape Features:

The Japanese Blueberry tree height is of great help when your landscape asks for tall privacy screens or even border planting. Their versatile growth pattern allows them to be used effectively for almost every need. Its dense growth pattern keeps them apart and enables them to spread to the full ground. If left alone, they can grow openly, and they respond pretty well to trimming and shaping for any formal occasions.

It can also be manicured or branch cut for use in casual and eclectic landscapes. The Japanese Blueberry trees can be blended with one or two finer or coarser shrubs to make an attractive composition. But, to be frank, the texture of these trees usually mixes well with nature.

– Ornamental Features:

The Japanese Blueberry trees produce nodding creamy white flowers that approximate a bell’s shape. The leaves of these trees are glossy and sharp, which is highly ornamental. Leaves generally tend to remain dark green throughout the winters. The berries are showy royal blue drupes for birds that prosper in the late fall. Having an abundance of juice, the berries may prove messy if dropped on the ground and may require additional cleanups.

The Japanese Blueberry Tree Sale: 

 The Japanese Blueberry tree height and its optimistic color combinations make the sale of these trees very high. These trees’ seeds are sold for 25 to 30 US Dollars, whereas the full-grown trees are sold at 150 to 200 US Dollars.

These trees are highly preferred in the market because of their landscape features. As mentioned above, these trees can be used for many purposes as screening, border fencing, wedding occasions, and many formal celebrations.

Because of its leaves having different colors every other season, it gives the owner an absolute rejuvenating nature every season.

Its sale also experiences a hype because the foresters also tend to plant these Blueberry Trees a lot, as it is an attractive tree for many birds and the natural wildlife which live in the forest. The fruit it produces and the leaves which it keeps are a point of magnetism for birds.

It produces blueberries that are pet friendly. These trees are preferred more over the others, which tend to shed fruits with poisonous properties.

Japanese Blueberry fruits

Q: What are key Japanese blueberry tree problems?

Though there are some uncommon Japanese blueberry tree problems, here we cover few of them which are most common.

The Japanese Blueberry tree problems:

  • This tree is vulnerable to chlorosis, which is caused due to a lack of nutrients. Characteristic symptoms include yellow coloration of leaves.
  • Severe leaf scorch is caused due to dry conditions combines with chlorosis. Iron deficiency is the most common cause of chlorosis. An iron deficiency arises when the soil pH rises above 6.5.
  • One more common problem is that it needs a lot of space to spread out. So if it is grown with other plants and weeds, it is forced to compete for nutrients.

Q: How to plant Japanese blueberry tree?

Being a very compact plant, you can plant this tree as close as 4 feet from your house. However, if you plan to plant this tree in a row, make sure you space them 4 to 5 feet apart. You can even grow them 8 feet apart to leave more room between each of them. To give the Japanese Blueberry trees a natural look, you should plant them in a group.

japanese blueberry trees in a row

Q: How to take care of your Japanese Blueberry Tree?

  • While you are planting, you should add organic humus mixed with compost cow manure to the hole.
  • These trees do not like sandy soils. So use organic waste to keep the soil moisturized and boost the growth of the tree.
  • Shearing of the plant should be done every 2 or 3 times a year, depending on the type of looks you want to give to the trees. Do not over shear, as the trees usually have a slower growth rate, so it might take a while to flush out again.
  • Pruning can indeed be done but only during hot climatic conditions.
  • Watering the plant is necessary but be careful not to keep the area overly wet. Water them at least once a week during summers.
  • Always fertilize three times a year, i.e., in spring, summer, and autumn, using a top grade fertilizer.
  • During the first growing season, water the Japanese Blueberry tree to keep the soil moist and help the tree to establish a healthy root foundation.
  • Addition or sprinkling of general-purpose fertilizer annually in springs would improve the ground, and the tree can produce leaves and berries effectively.

Q: Are Japanese Blueberries edible?

Elaeocarpus is not known for edible blueberries. Japanese Blueberries are not edible. They have ornamental use. Birds may sometimes eat those berries, but human beings cannot use them for consumption.

Q: Is Japanese Blueberry poisonous to dogs?

No, the Japanese Blueberries are not poisonous to dogs. They are usually considered a Pet-friendly plant. However, the fertilizers used for proper growth of the Japanese Blueberry trees contain ammonium sulfate or potassium sulfate. Extensive exposure can cause laziness and breathing, and mobility issues in dogs. So be careful while using the fertilizers if you have a pet dog. One should use it judiciously.

Q: How fast do blueberry trees grow?

Considering the Japanese Blueberry trees’ growth rate, they usually tend to have a slow to moderate growth rate. The planted seed would approximately take two years to commence growing. They are handy for screening purposes but considering their growth rates, instead of producing roots go for planting half-grown ones to get the desired results quicker.

Q: Do Japanese blueberries (Elaeocarpus decipiens) lose their leaves?

Yes, they do! It is no doubt that the Japanese Blueberry Tree belongs to an evergreen tree family, but as with all the broad-leaf evergreen trees, the Japanese Blueberry trees too shed their leaves every 2 to 3 years to pave the way for new and healthy new foliage. The healthy trees would replace these lost leaves in a few weeks.

japanese blueberry tree


The Japanese Blueberry Tree is an exemplary ornamental tree with great landscape features and numerous decoration uses. Though the fruit it produces is not edible for human beings, these fruits are the favorite treat of many birds. Its blissful coloring leaves are undoubtedly the best way to attract birds from all over the globe.

Its changing color patterns and growth by occupying a lot of space differentiate it from other plants. The Japanese Blueberry trees do not have any known diseases. However, if the soil quality is not maintained, it may cause some problems in its growth and development. Planting these trees makes the place around it alive!






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