The identity of this taxon is questionable. The record of usage[
] refers to a plant in China and the Himalayas; however, the Flora of China[
] does not contain Vaccinium sprengelii, but has a record for Vaccinium harmandianum Dop, which it questions as to whether it is the same as Vaccinium sprengelii. In India the taxon Vaccinium exaristatum Kurz is said to have been wrongly treated as Vaccinium sprengelii.(J. Bombay Nat. Hist. Soc., 104 (3), Sep-Dec 2007 p375).
Agapetes sprengelii G.Don
Vaccinium sprengelii is an erect, evergreen to deciduous shrub with slender branches; it can grow up to 3 metres tall[
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food.
E. Asia - China to the Himalayas.
Woods, streamsides and thickets; at elevations from 1,300 - 1,600 metres in W. Hupeh[
]. Mixed forests, pine forests and thickets; at elevations from 2,300 - 2,700, occasionally to 3,200 metres[
Requires a moist but freely-draining lime free soil, preferring one that is rich in peat or a light loamy soil with added leaf-mould[
]. Prefers a very acid soil with a pH in the range of 4.5 to 6, plants soon become chlorotic when lime is present. Succeeds in full sun or light shade though it fruits better in a sunny position[
]. Requires shelter from strong winds[
Dislikes root disturbance, plants are best grown in pots until being planted out in their permanent positions[
A polymorphic species[
], it is closely related to Vaccinium duclouxii[
Plants are deciduous in cold climates[
Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[
Fruit - raw or cooked[
]. The black-red to purple-black fruit is about 5mm in diameter[
]. No more details are given.
Seed - sow late winter in a greenhouse in a lime-free potting mix and only just cover the seed[
]. Stored seed might require a period of up to 3 months cold stratification[
]. Another report says that it is best to sow the seed in a greenhouse as soon as it is ripe[
]. Once they are about 5cm tall, prick the seedlings out into individual pots and grow them on in a lightly shaded position in the greenhouse for at least their first winter. Plant them out into their permanent positions in late spring or early summer, after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 5 - 8cm with a heel, August in a frame[
]. Slow and difficult.
Layering in late summer or early autumn[
]. Another report says that spring is the best time to layer[
]. Takes 18 months[
Division of suckers in spring or early autumn[