I have two small blueberry bushes that I planted last summer.

During winter I've had a hare/rabbit that has chewed them up. Only the 2-3 innermost biggest core branches of each plant remains and these have been cut to 3/4 of their original size.

On these remaining branches part of the bark on the top of half has been stripped off by the animal.

The plants have lost about 1/2 of their original mass.

It's still winter right now. Should I expect these plants to be able to recover this year or maybe next year and eventually produce some fruits?

Or should I just uproot them come spring and buy new ones?

  • 2
    Do I assume correctly that you know how to prevent the chewing critter damage in the future? Until you have, your question seems moot. I don't really have an answer for you, but plants evolved to cope with this kind of thing. Of course that doesn't mean every individual plant will survive, but I am always inclined to clean up the damage and see what comes. But you might buy a few new ones too/instead anyway.
    – user13580
    Commented Mar 6, 2016 at 5:10

1 Answer 1


Since poorly maintained blueberry bushes can be pruned right to the ground, it's likely your plants will survive their animal pruning. You will need to tidy them up though, and protect them from animal damage in the future. The good thing is you are in the right month in the northern hemisphere to prune.


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