Behold superfood - highbush blueberries, which are high in antioxidants, versatile and delicious, easy to freeze and beautiful to look at in the garden, both when their tiny white blossoms unfold and when the berries emerge. But behold quickly, no procrastinating, because pretty soon birds will pick these bushes clean. Blueberry experts in my world have had the same experience I, a certified amateur, have had - even netting won't deter them. I figure birds have to eat, too, but I wish I had a way to save some for my own use. The berries go from green to bluish/purple pretty quickly, but not all of them ripen at once, so it's best to pick over your bushes a few times before abandoning hope. Fruit growers extol the virtues of blueberries - they're pretty easy-going, attract few pests (unless you consider birds in that category) and require only an acidic soil and the proverbial good drainage to thrive. So far, my young bushes haven't needed pruning; at some point, the dead branches will need to come out. These guys are slow to spurt, but are reputed to have a long life span, maybe 20 years or more. Alan Buckingham, author of Grow Fruit, a book published just last month by DK Publishing ($22.95), suggests buying either bare-root or container-grown plants that are certified disease-free and two or three years old. (Container varieties will grow faster than bare-root plants.) He also suggests planting more than one - ideally, three different varieties or more - so they can cross-pollinate each other, although blueberries are supposed to be self-fertile, meaning they can pollinate themselves. Neat trick! Spring and fall are the best planting times. As for the acid soil requirement, fear not. Buckingham says that if you're doing well with rhodies, azaleas, camelias and other acid-lovers, you should be OK to plant blueberries. Go blue!