Vaccinium myrtillus is a small deciduous shrub, originally from Northern Europe, known as the blueberry; many species of vaccinium are widespread in most of the cool or temperate regions of the Northern Hemisphere. These are small densely branched shrubs, sometimes climbers or ground cover plants, which remain below 40-50 cm in height. The blueberry leaves are oval or lanceolate, thick and leathery, bright green, take on a golden-yellow or reddish color in the autumn and tend to remain on the plant even after they have withered; in late spring the Vaccinium myrtillus produces small bunches of bell-shaped flowers, slightly waxy, white in color, at the leaf axil. In early summer or early autumn, depending on the species, the rounded, purple-colored fruits ripen, covered with a layer of pruina which makes them opaque. There are many species of vaccinium, with fruits of variable size: V. corymbosum, originally from North America, has fruits with a diameter close to two cm; V. macocarpon has red fruits, like V. vitis-idaea. In general, blueberry fruits ripen in succession over 3-4 weeks. These fruits are highly appreciated to be consumed fresh or in jam and are also used both in herbal medicine and in the pharmaceutical industry, being rich in vitamins and flavonoids.
These small plants can be planted in full sun, or preferably in partial shade, especially in places with very hot summers, choosing however places with a good degree of brightness, a fundamental factor for the production of abundant fruits. They generally do not fear winter cold, even if there are species more suitable for heat, and others more suitable for cold; in general it is advisable to plant blueberry shrubs away from the wind, which can cause damage to the leaves and which causes rapid evaporation of water from the soil. To keep the soil moist and to avoid the excessive development of weeds it is advisable to place bark, pine needles, or dry leaves around the plant.