Wolfberry Growing Conditions
Answered by: Inge Poot
Question from: Yvonne Prather
Posted on: August 12, 2007

Part of this spring’s order consisted of three Chinese wolfberry plants. They got worse and worse looking in my greenhouse but suddenly began to do well. They seem strong and are about 6 inches tall. My question is what type of soil do they want? Clay, peat or sand, etc?

They like well-drained, sandy, moist and alkaline soil. They are winter hardy to zone 5.

And what part do you use for medicinal use? Just berries or leaves?

According to Deni Bown’s book "Encyclopedia of Herbs and Their Uses" Richters catalogue # B2730, the fruits are used for high blood pressure, diabetes, poor eyesight, vertigo, lumbago, impotence and menopausal complaints. The root bark is used for chronic fevers, internal haemorrhage, nosebleeds, tuberculosis, coughs, asthma, verrucas and childhood eczema. Externally it is used for genital itching.

How old must they be before they produce berries?

If grown well, they fruit in about 4 to 5 years. They should then be cut back in spring to control growth and again once or twice later in the year to produce a compact bush that is well-branched for heavier fruiting and easier harvesting. The bark is stripped from the roots in winter, but be careful that you don’t harvest so much that you kill the plant. Fruit is harvested in the fall.

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