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You own the farmland and don’t know what to do with it. Invest in health. Plant a fashionable fruit culture, red diamond, happy berries, “superfruit.” Plant goji berries.
Goji berry growing can be done throughout the year, from April until late in the fall. If you are planting seedlings in the summer, be sure to provide plenty of water for them. Therefore, do not forget about watering regularly. To find out more about goji berry growing, continue reading our article.
Goji berry growing table of content:
- Growing goji berries
- Goji berry plantation maintenance
- Goji berry disease protection
- Harvesting goji berries
- Storage of goji berries
- Drying goji berries
- Placement and added value to the product
- Medicinal properties of goji berries
- Goji berries in culinary arts
- Interesting things about goji berries
The cultivation of goji berries thrives best on sunny surfaces and wet terrain. Goji, Latin Lycium barbarum or Lycium chinense, is a woody and shrubby plant belonging to the family Solanaceae. Goji shrubs can grow from 40 to 120 inches long and produce long orange-red berries that are 0.4 to 0.8 inches long and contain 20 to 40 seeds. Goji plants can be planted in an orchard or garden and can grow up to 80 inches in height.
Growing goji berries
Goji berry growing can be done throughout the year, from April until late in the fall. If you are planting seedlings in the summer, be sure to provide plenty of water for them. Therefore, do not forget about watering regularly.
Goji is planted in a pit 1500 x 1500 x 1500 and the distance between the plants should be about 60 inches. Fertilizer is placed at the bottom of the excavated pit, followed by a layer of soil. After that, the pit remains 6 to 8 inches deep. Before the seedlings are laid in the soil, a substrate is placed. The seedling is covered with soil and watered with water. It is recommended that you attach the young plants to the cane to support them when growing.
Goji shrubs bloom from June to September, and the fruits are ripe for harvest between August and October.
Soil for growing goji berries
Goji berries grow on alkaline soils with a pH value of 8.2 to 8.6, so provide them with a pH value of 6.5 onwards. Diluted and nutritious soils will best suit them.
Temperature for growing goji berries
For good cultivation of goji berries, plant them on sunny grounds. Ideal planting sites are those where sunlight is present throughout the day.
Water for growing goji berries
In the summer months, goji berries will be disturbed by dry periods and will have higher moisture and water requirements. This is especially true for young plants that need to be watered regularly. Depending on the soil type and moisture present, in the summer months water them in the morning and evening.
Goji berry plantation maintenance
The plant must be irrigated (considerable input cost) and nutrients may be added to the water. Foliar feeding of the plant on a monthly basis is also recommended.
Cutting and pruning goji berries
To achieve good cultivation and the best conditions for producing goji berries, you need to prune them properly. Bare shrubs are most often cut into cylindrical, umbrella and three-tier models.
A technology called the umbrella: already in the first year, you should start tearing sprouts so that it leaves two or three main branches up to 80 inches in height. We tear the top and leave 20-30 stumps at the very top, and then we again tear the tops on those each one after they reach a length of 8 – 12 inches, and innumerable branches emerge from them.
Goji berry disease protection
Goji is still relatively resistant to disease and pests in our geographic and climatic areas, so organic plant cultivation is recommended. Be careful because there is a risk of rabbits and voles attacking. It is recommended that you install a guardrail on time.
Harvesting goji berries
The first crop of goji shrubs can be given in the second or third year, depending on the age of the seedling. When the plant reaches full yield, it can yield as much as 11 pounds of fruit.
Harvesting takes place on several occasions and must be done before the first frosts occur. The first fruit is expected in late August or early September and can bear fruit until the first frosts. Due to the sensitivity of the fruits, manual harvesting is recommended.
Storage of goji berries
Goji berries are used in fresh form and dried, as we often see in stores. If you want to make your berries last longer, dry them in the sun or with a mechanical dehydrator.
If stored properly, they can last up to a year.
Drying goji berries
When ripe, the berries are delicate and must be carefully picked. After harvesting, they are placed in special boxes, where they are then dried either in the sun or by mechanical dehydration consisting of progressive batches of heat for 48 hours. The main world exporter is China, whose total exports in 2014 were $120 million. This is production obtained from 82000 hectares of national production, with a total yield of 95000 tonnes.
The goji berries are spread in a thin layer and dried in the shade or in the sun. When the pericarp folds and browns and the fruit remains soft, it means that they are dry. They can also be dried in ovens at 105 – 115 °F. The dried goji berries have a slightly sour-sweet taste. When tasted they taste like cranberries or dried grapes.
The root bark is collected in spring and autumn. The root is dug out, then well rinsed and the bark removed which is sun-dried or in the oven. The dried bark from the goji root is used to treat inflammatory and skin diseases.
Placement and added value to the product
Before you go into production, inquire about buyout fruits near you, the existence of cooperatives engaged in goji production, the minimum quantities a grocery or health food store chain would require, demand and prices.
The art is to know how to get a good sales price. For some of you, the comfort and relaxation of production for a buyer who takes care of the placement will suit you. But all of you who do not want to make a living for others from your work, you will need to invest extra in the marketing of either fresh fruit or processed products. Whether it means paying a nearby dryer for goji berry drying or processing the berries will depend on your options.
On the market, this fruit comes in the form of juices, teas, whole fruit pastes, dried fruits, seed oil, etc. It is a good idea to make goji berry wine. But you might still get the best profit by producing a minced diet supplement. And lastly, goji berries are on the menu of exclusive restaurants in combination with rice, chicken, and pork. The hardest part is finding a way to the customer for mutual benefit. Why not offer goji treatments at cutting wellness centers and spas or private nursing homes?
Medicinal properties of goji berries
Goji berries are also called wolfberries and are considered to be the fruit with the highest nutritional density. They are often called red diamonds and happy berries because they are one of the most potent plants, and when consumed, people feel good and happy. To have a health effect, you need to eat 10 to 30 grams a day. In alternative medicine, fruits are most commonly used, although, in Chinese medicine, leaf, bark, and seeds are also used.
Goji berries are rich in essential fatty acids, antioxidants, and amino acids, making them a superfood. They are ranked number one by antioxidants according to the US ORAC rankings. Next up is pomegranate with significantly fewer antioxidant units than goji. It is high in vitamin C and iron.
Scientists have found that only 5 percent of the goji berries in the juice can affect the sunburn burns, and with it reduce the occurrence of skin cancer. They have the power to repair retinal and eye damage due to type 2 diabetes.
Goji berries also contain a polysaccharide that can boost immunity, cleanse the body and keep it safe from harmful substances.
If you feel pain in your back, muscles and joints, and pain due to various inflammations, try the effect of goji berries. It will also help with chronic cough, asthma, and respiratory problems. Because consuming these happy berries reduces the desire for sugary foods, it is also thought to be an ideal ally for weight loss.
In addition to great nutritional values, they also have a great effect on skin health. They are ideal for restoring the radiance and glow of your skin and for fighting wrinkles.
But be careful if you are taking medicines for blood pressure, diabetes or for blood clotting. Consult a doctor in these cases before consuming goji berries.
Goji berries in culinary arts
Goji berries are generally eaten fresh or dried and eaten as a dietary supplement. They are very tasty, berry-chocolate flavored and are often eaten as a substitute for sweets. They can be made into jams, juices, and liqueurs, and are often used in the preparation of tea. Add them to yogurt or salads, and you can refine them with wine.
Interesting facts about goji berries
Goji berries grow in their natural habitat in the Himalayas, where they are often used in medicine in addition to the kitchen. They have been used in England since the 18th century when they were used in the meal preparation and as decoration. In the early 21st century, their popularity increased as scientific research confirmed that they had a beneficial effect on health.