How To Pick Blueberries? SUITABLE Techniques

BY Shaafay Zia
Last Update:

Besides the health benefits of blueberries, they are also ranked in terms of their DELICIOUS TASTE.

I can’t even imagine anything more DELIGHTFUL than freshly picked blueberries.

But I think picking isn’t an EASY TASK.

One problem about TASTY BERRIES that worries many people is “how to pick blueberries.” 

If you are also one of them, it’s time to put your WORRIES ASIDE because we HELP you in this REGARD.

Yes! The GARDENING EXPERTS have spent years learning different suitable tactics for blueberries. Now we know a thing or two about these berries.

With our HELP you easily pick fresh and tasty blueberries.  

Learn! How to pick and store blueberries perfectly.

How To Pick Blueberries

How Do You Know Blueberries are Ripe?

How Do You Know Blueberries are Ripe

Blueberry is a DELICIOUS food that can be enjoyed in plenty of recipes like 

  • Blueberry pancakes
  • Muffins 
  • Pies etc. 

However, it can be TRICKY to KNOW when blueberries are ripe.

Here are SOME TIPS to be sure your blueberry is READY for picking and enjoying.


When blueberries RIPEN, they should be deep blue. If they are still pink or green-colored blueberries, they aren’t ripe yet.

Remember that blueberries aren’t also QUITE READY when they turn blueish.

Getting my point?

Uh! I know it’s so ALLURING to pick blueberries when they look ripe. But you must give them A FEW MORE days to be their best.

Check for Plumpness

Ripe blueberry is deep blue and looks FULL and plump. It shouldn’t be mushy or wrinkled.

The skin of a ripe blueberry should be smooth and slightly waxed.

These blueberries will continue to darken FURTHER after they have been harvested. So it is CRUCIAL to ensure blueberries are FULLY RIPE when you pick them.

Shake the Plant

When the blueberries are ripe, they will be EASIEST FRUIT TO HARVEST. It is because they just FALL AWAY from the stem.

  •  If you GENTLY SHAKE the bush, ripe blueberries should easily fall off.
  • In contrast, if they have to be PULLED OFF the stem, they still NEED some time for ripening.

Taste test

The BEST WAY to know if the growing blueberries are ripe is to taste one.

The ULTIMATE GOAL is to have berries with the BEST flavor and texture. So indeed, the only WAY to know is to taste the DIFFERENT SHADES of growing blueberries.

Isn’t that awesome?

Well! You know fresh blueberries should be sweet and juicy with a SLIGHTLY tart taste. They REQUIRE a few more days to ripen if they are still SOUR. 

Suggested reading: Do Squirrels Eat Blueberries?

When to Harvest Blueberry?

When to Harvest Blueberry

Regardless of the TYPE of blueberry, the QUESTION is when to harvest your own blueberries. Right?

LISTEN! Normally I PREFER to harvest blueberries when they are ripened FULLY. It is because green or white color berries usually will not RIPEN FURTHER after they are picked. 

But how would you know your blueberries have ripened?

  • Initially, don’t RUSH to pick the berries TOO EARLY. Look for FULLY blue color because if they are green or pink, they aren’t RIPE yet. 
  • Also, the ripe blueberries are plump and firm to the touch. They shouldn’t be mushy or wrinkled. So you can also check the ripeness just by TOUCHING them.
  • The best way to know if blueberries are READY to harvest is to TASTE one. Ripe berries should be sweet and juicy with a SLIGHTLY tart taste. If they are sour, they REQUIRE some more days to ripen.

Blueberries are usually READY to harvest from late May through mid-August.

But it usually depends on the region and the variety you have planted.

Pro Tip: You can plant two or more varieties for a BOUNTIFUL harvest.

But what about their fertility?

Hence, blueberries are partially self-fertile.

So, planting MORE THAN ONE type can extend the harvest season. Thus, inducing the plant to produce more berries.

How to Pick Blueberries Perfectly?

How to Pick Blueberries Perfectly

Blueberry picking is an ENJOYABLE and rewarding activity. But it is CRUCIAL to do it CAREFULLY to ensure the best quality fruit.

Here are CERTAIN tips I prefer to use before picking strawberries:

Check the Fruit

When picking, CHOOSE those berries that have RIPENED COMPLETELY.

  •  Look for berries that are COMPLETELY blue. White and green blueberries DO NOT RIPEN further once picked. So it is better to LEAVE them in the blueberry bushes to ripen further.
  • The longer the berries stay on the BUSH to ripen fully, the SWEETER the berries become.
  • Ripe blueberries are plump and firm to the touch.

Before picking, also look for the sign of damage and disease. Discard larger berries that are soft, moldy, or sometimes discolored also.

Choose the Best Time

Yup! Picking blueberry can be very SIMPLE and provide a lot of FUN.

Once your blueberries are READY, you must wait for the RIGHT TIME for blueberry picking.

But what’s the best time? Right?

Usually, I like to pick the best blueberries in the EARLY MORNING.

Because at that time, they are cool and less likely to be damaged by the heat.

Choose the Right Technique

There are many automatic and manual methods of picking blueberries.

But I THINK handpicking is the most common and traditional method, and also the best one indeed. 

So how can you pick the blueberries?

Gently grasp a cluster of berries from the base with one hand and pick the berries from the other.

Simple, Right?

Let’s talk about some precautions you MUST FOLLOW while harvesting juicy blueberries.


  1. Try to AVOID pulling or twisting, as it can damage the blueberry plants.
  2.  If you are using your WHOLE HAND to pick, provide support with the other.
  3. Be CAREFUL not to crush the fruit while picking.  

Note: Once you have DONE the harvesting, you can use the berries IMMEDIATELY or freeze them for later use. 

Tips for Storing Fresh Blueberries

Tips for Storing Fresh Blueberries

Blueberry is a delicious and healthy fruit that can be enjoyed in VARIOUS ways.

But improper storage of blueberries can cause them to LOSE their GOODNESS. So to KEEP them fresh and healthy, it’s CRUCIAL to store them properly.  

Here are CERTAIN WAYS to store your blueberries ACCURATELY:


Ripe blueberries are delicate and can SPOIL SWIFTLY if left at room temperature.

So, make sure to refrigerate your blueberries AS SOON AS possible. It will help to EXTEND their shelf life.  

  • You can KEEP your berries in an open refrigerator for up to 7 days.
  • The berries start LOSING their moisture content if they REMAIN LONGER than that.
  • Hence, it’s best to ensure the refrigerated blueberries are CONSUMED within seven days. 

Note: If you wish to use store the blueberries for a longer duration, freezing is the best option. 


If you can’t use blueberries RIGHT AWAY or want to store them longer, just freeze them.

Frozen blueberries can be kept for up to 6 months. But there are a few steps to make sure that the berries are frozen correctly.

  • Spread your blueberries on a baking sheet without TOUCHING them in a SINGLE LAYER.
  • Let them FIRM UP in the freezer for a couple of hours to get frozen berries.
  • After that, transfer the berries to an open container or resealable plastic bag. And POP them back in the freezer.

Keep Your Berries Dry

Fresh berries are prone to MOISTURE DAMAGE which can cause them to SPOIL more quickly.

To keep them dry, remove damaged and moldy berries, if any. And wash them only when you are READY to use them.

If you have RINSED your fresh fruit, then

  • First, allow the berries to dry COMPLETELY before storing them. Gently roll blueberries on a paper towel until no visible water is left.
  • After that, transfer the dried blueberries to an airtight CONTAINER in the freezer. 

How Do You Ripen or Sweeten Blueberries?

How Do You Ripen or Sweeten Blueberries

 TYPICALLY, all the berries ripen naturally and become sweeter as they remain on the plant.

Still, you can FOLLOW a few things to ripen your blueberries if you have harvested TOO SOON.

Note: Blueberries that have ALREADY turned purple DO ripen after being picked. It means green or white colored blueberries will not RIPEN.

Leave at the Room Temperature

First of all, if your berries aren’t RIPE FULLY, LEAVE them at room temperature to ripen further. Make sure to KEEP them away from direct sunlight and heat sources.

GETTING my point?

Certainly, this process TAKES some time. But it will SURELY help you to ripen your blueberries.

Place in a Plastic Bag

Generally, I prefer a plastic bag to SPEED UP the ripening process.

Well! You can also use it.

Fold the TOP of the plastic bag to seal and leave it at room temperature for a few days. 

But how it speeds up the process? RIGHT?

Actually, the ethylene gas produced by the fruit will be TRAPPED in the bag, which helps it ripen FASTER.

In this regard, sometimes I also choose to ADD a ripe banana. Ripe banana provides A LOT of ethylene gas to BOOST this process.

Note: These two methods only make the berries softer and juicer. It means it won’t make them sweeter.

Sprinkle Sugar

How can you sweeten your blueberries? That’s what you WANT to know. Right?

Here is a simple, tested way to SWEETEN the blueberries:

  • Mix a tablespoon of sugar with one CUP of blueberries and STIR to coat evenly.
  • Let them stay for a FEW MINUTES before eating to enhance their natural sweetness. 

Keep in mind that ADDING sugar to fruit can INCREASE the overall sugar and calorie count. So it’s better to CONSUME sweetened fruit in moderation. 

FAQs about How To Pick Blueberries

1. How can you tell if blueberry is sweet?

The sweetness of the blueberry can be DETERMINED by its color and taste.
· Ripe blueberries have a DEEP, dark blue color.
· Sweet blueberries taste juicy and flavorful, with a BALANCE of sweetness and acidity.  
· You can also look for plump and firm berries, as these are sweeter than soft or shriveled

2. Are blueberries hard to pick?

Harvesting blueberries is a SIMPLE PROCESS, but there are a few things to REMEMBER.
Wait till the berries become RIPEN completely. They should FALL OFF into your hand without tugging on the DELICATE berry. 

3. Can you eat blueberries off the bush?

Blueberries don’t ripen after the PICKING process.
So, YES! Fully ripe berries can be eaten directly off the blueberry bush as a healthy and delicious snack.
NOTE: It’s an excellent IDEA to wash the berries before eating to remove any dirt or debris. 

4. Should I soak blueberries in water?

GENERALLY, it is not necessary to soak the blueberries in water. A simple rinse of cold water is ENOUGH.
Suppose you want to ENSURE all the pesticides and bacteria have WASHED AWAY. A saltwater bath or a vinegar solution is preferable.
It is because soaking blueberries in water can lead them to lose their flavor and texture

What’s Next

You have GOT so many DETAILS about picking blueberries. Blueberries need to be PICKED only when they become ripen.

It is because UNRIPE berries usually DO NOT ripen further after harvesting.

Also, CHOOSE the right time and technique to pick the blueberries PERFECTLY. 

If you want to LEARN more about berries and other fruits, visit AsterGardening.

I ASSURE you that you will find trouble-free and ATTESTED techniques here. So if you have any HURDLES concerning gardening, REACH OUT to us. 

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Shaafay Zia

Hi, I'm a fellow green thumb who moonlight's as a writer. Gardening is something that brings me peace and I have been in the sport for many years now. With all of our expertise, we will always bring you the best content which will make you love your garden, even more.