A berry that brings natural healing
Learning about how to care for and the many health benefits of the goji berry
For some of you, this seems to be a funny or strange word to pronounce and for many, this may be a fruit that you are hearing of for the first time but what reports are saying about the goji berry is that this berry is known as a super berry because of how it is looked upon medically.
Goji berries are said to make a healthy juice that can really supercharge our bodies with its nutrients so for those of you who love smoothies adding some of these berries will work wonders.
What we will be looking at however is how to grow and care for your own homegrown goji berry shrub so you can have an abundance of these berries at your fingertips to make delicious smoothies and other healthy treats which I think is really cool.
Growing goji berries
Goji berries grow best in zone 5-9, goji berries belong to the nightshade family which consists of peppers and tomatoes. The goji berry is widely grown in Turkey, Japan, China, and Russia.
How to grow
- Look for an area that gets lots of sunlight
- Provide your plant with sufficient room to grow
- Using organic soil will go a long way in improving soil structure
- The soil PH level should be between 6.8-8.1
- If starting your shrub from a 3-gallon container or larger, the Planting hole should be twice that of the root ball in width so the root ball can sit comfortably
- Backfill planting hole with organic soil and pack soil gently around your shrub
- Give your plant a good drink of water, monitor and keep the soil moist
- Keep soil moderately moist
- Organic fertilizers that contain nitrogen compounds will keep your berries in tip-top shape
Insects of goji berries
Birds, insects, and other garden pests can become a big problem to your berry shrub but follow these steps to help in keeping these insect pests at bay.
Keeping birds and other garden pests away
- Wait until after pollination (after bees do their job) of your shrub to install a mesh netting over your plant, this netting will keep birds away. For other pests such as rabbits, deer, etc.. installing a tall fence or motion sensor sprinkler systems will help
keep insects away from your berry bush
- Insects pest poses another problem which causes berries leaves to become yellow then narcotic before defoliation (leave drop) takes place. To keep insects population at a level where they will not be damaging to your shrub planting herbs in between your goji berries such as garlic, basil, rosemary, and chives will discourage them
Diseases of goji berries
Powdery mildew is a white mass that forms on the surface of berry leaves. Treating with a fungicide will bring about control, also water plants during the day hours will help the leaves to dry before night falls because moisture at nighttime will encourage disease.
Goji berries ripen at different times of the year during the growing season in different climates. When berries turn a bright red that’s an indication that they are ready to harvest. keep a close eye on your goji berry shrub from June to October.
Vitamins of goji berries
Vitamins of goji berries include Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Zinc, Iron, Fiber, Calcium, Protein, Vitamin B2, Riboflavin, Potassium, Copper, Thiamin, Riboflavin and Selenium
The health benefits of goji berries
Benefits of goji berries include
- Promotes lung health
- Improve eyesight
- Fight depression
- Aid in weight loss
- Has antioxidants that help to rid the body of free radicals
- Improves hair growth
- Enhances muscle growth
- Helps to balance hormones
- Detoxify the liver
- Regulates blood pressure level
- Help to fight cancer
- Promotes brain health
- Improves the immune system
How to use goji berries
Here are some ways to enjoy your goji berries
- Add them to your breakfast cereals
- Include them in your fruit salads
- Eat them with your oatmeal
- Add goji berries to your smoothies
- Eat them just as they are for a healthy snack
- Add goji berries to your trail mix
- Sprinkle a few over your garden salads
The final word
Goji berries are really great. The growth and care of these plants are not hard at all. Following these steps will ensure that you are reaping a good harvest of these berries for years to come. So plant these shrubs and reap the benefits.