Blueberries have been growing in North
America for a very long time--botanists guess about 13,000 years.
When the colonists arrived, two varieties were found growing wild--the
highbush and the lowbush. Today, the lowbush variety still grows
wild in the state of Maine as well as in Eastern Canada. It is
harvested mostly for use in baked goods and processed foods.
|Find the state of Maine and the provinces
of Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia on your map. Color them
|Thanks to agricultural research that began
in the early part of this century, blueberries are now a cultivated
crop. The wild highbush variety was domesticated and improved so
that the bushes could be planted in fields and cared for by farmers.
Today, cultivated blueberries can grow just about anywhere in the
U.S. and Canada -- in the MIDWEST, the EAST, the NORTHWEST, and
even in the SOUTH. In the MIDWEST, cultivated blueberries grow in
Michigan and Indiana. In fact, on average, more than 40% of all
cultivated blueberries grown in the U.S. come from this region.
||Find Michigan and Indiana on your map
and color them blue.
|In the EAST, New Jersey is the major blueberry-growing
||Find New Jersey and color it green.
|Oregon and Washington in the NORTHWEST
grow blueberries as well as the neighboring province of British
||Color Oregon, Washington and British
|Cultivated blueberries can grow in warmer
climates too, like Georgia, North Carolina, Mississippi, Louisiana
and Florida. The blueberries that grow in the SOUTH are harvested
in the Spring before it gets very hot.
||Find these states on your map and color
|Which blueberry growing area on your map
is closest to where you live? You may find that some of the blueberries
in your supermarket come from the area closest to you but some may
come from farther away. Can you explain why?
||Draw a line from home to the closest
blueberry-growing area. Have you had blueberries from there? You
can find out where your blueberries come from by reading the label
on the package, container or can.