Those looking to improve their mind and body need not look any further than their own patio or yard because homegrown berries are nutritional powerhouses. They are low in fat and have high concentrations of antioxidants, which help protect our bodies from the damage caused by harmful molecules called free radicals.
All berries are loaded with fiber, a nutrient important for a healthy digestive system and one that may also help control blood sugar. Berries may even help manage diabetes. Blueberries, for instance, have a low glycemic index, meaning that they’re less likely to cause blood sugar spikes compared to other carbohydrate foods. Just one serving of blueberries contains almost 25 percent of the daily recommended requirement of Vitamin C.
The antioxidants found in blueberries and blackberries, called anthocyanins, may even help keep one’s memory sharp. And raspberries contain ellagic acid, a compound with cancer-fighting properties.
For a nutritionally packed punch right at your fingertips, add a trio of berry bushes to your garden that include blueberries, blackberries and raspberries. The easy-to-grow Bushel and Berry™ collection includes compact-sized plants that offer exquisite beauty and lots of flavor. Small space gardeners can put these plants in containers for an element that is just as functional as it is beautiful for patios or balconies.
Plus, the benefits of gardening are endless in themselves. Caring for berry bushes and plants encourages outdoor activity and helps to reduce stress levels, which can help prevent a number of lifestyle diseases including diabetes and obesity and improve quality of life.
Top 3 Berry Bushes to Plant
Add all three berries to your yard or patio for fresh harvests with essential health benefits.
1. Baby Cakes®, a thornless and easy-to-grow blackberry bush, grows to be about 3 to 4 feet tall. It’s even perfect for households with children with tiny hands. In most regions, Baby Cakes will produce sweet berries twice in one season. This plant is just as decorative as its fruits are edible — add it to your patio or entryway in a container to brighten up your outdoor space. Grow in full sun in plant hardiness zones 4 to 8.
2. Raspberry Shortcake® is a revolutionary thornless dwarf raspberry that grows to be 2 to 3 feet tall. It produces mid-summer fruit that has a sweet, traditional raspberry flavor. Raspberry Shortcake is compact, with a rounded growth habit and thrives in a patio pot or in the landscape. Perfect for children and adults, this carefree nutritious raspberry requires no staking or big garden spaces. Grow in full sun in zones 3 to 9.
3. Pink Icing® blueberry is a four-season showstopper that grows 3 to 4 feet tall. Spring brings a lovely new foliage color that has varying shades of pink mixed with blue and deeper greens. In winter, Pink Icing’s foliage takes on a stunning iridescent turquoise blue hue. Perfect for small spaces on patios or decks, Pink Icing has a slightly spreading habit. Enjoy its large, sweet berries during mid-summer. Grow in full sun in zones 5 to 10.