Goji Berry Plants

January 7, 2007

Normally gourmet garlic seed is the last thing planted in my garden each fall, but this year a new plant filled that role in my backyard… Goji Berry Plants!

New Fruit Variety for the Home Garden

You may already be familiar with Goji Berries if you keep up with the latest and greatest in the world of nutritional supplements. Goji Berries have been receiving a lot of press recently for the reported health benefits and high levels of antioxidants that have been linked to this exotic fruit from Tibet.

Bare-Root-Goji-Berry-Plant.jpgDespite its uncommon roots and foreign background, I became acquainted with the Goji Berry a couple of years ago and soon afterward discovered that the plant can be cultivated here in the U.S. So of course my interest in ornamental and unusual edible fruits led me to try growing Goji Berry plants in my own backyard garden.

The main attraction, in addition to their uniqueness was the fact that the berries appear to be an extremely care-free plant to grow. Add to that their ability to produce huge harvests of nutritious and delicious fruit and it sounds like the perfect fruit for the home gardener.

While Goji Berry plants have rather exotic origins, they are not tropical and can survive the winter even in cold climate regions. Because this fruit is relatively new to growers in the U.S., there’s not much concrete information regarding their performance in various parts of the country, however Goji Berries appear to be extremely adaptable as well as hardy.

Goji Berry Growth Habits and Appearance

To top off the other favorable characteristics for including Goji Berries in the backyard garden, the plants are also ornamental, producing attractive purple and white tropical looking flowers that are followed by bright red, tear-drop shaped berries.

Initially I thought that Goji was a vining type of plant that required support, but it turns out that the growth habit is more similar to a shrub than a vine. The plant is reported to grow to heights of twelve feet tall and as wide as eight feet, but it can be pruned and trained to smaller dimensions, or even raised as an indoor house plant.

If I sound unsure about this ornamental edible plant it’s only because that is the case. This is a new one for me and my first attempt at growing this fruit. If you have more experience growing Goji Berries and would like to share a few of your own tips feel free to send me an e-mail or leave a response in the comment section below.

Obtaining Goji Berry Plants and Seeds

Goji-Berry-Plants.jpgOnce I decided to try my hand at growing Goji Berries I immediately ran into a problem in locating and obtaining seeds or plants to start this uncommon fruit. The one company that I stumbled upon that offered plants for sale only sold and shipped them during the winter months, and they were completely sold out at the time.

It was a little puzzling to me why they would sell and ship outdoor plants to northern gardeners during the midst of the harsh winter season. Well it turns out that they ship dormant plants for fall or winter planting. I went on their mailing list and was finally able to order a couple of Goji Berry plants this past December.

I purchased my Goji plants from Timpanogos Nursery. They sell dormant plants for fall planting, and now also sell seed kits and potted Goji Berries for planting in the springtime. If you search the Internet you may find a couple of additional sources for the plants or Goji Berry seeds.

Growing Fall Planted Goji Berries

When I placed my order this fall I did have some reservations over what the weather would be like by the time that the Goji Berry plants arrived. Thoughts of cutting through frozen soil in below freezing weather to plant my Goji Berries were not comforting at all. Fortunately when the plants arrived the weather was mild and perfect for planting.

The planting process was pretty routine, no special treatment was required and Timpanogos supplied a very detailed cultivation manual that described every aspect of growing Goji Berries including planting, pruning techniques, harvesting, and even recipes for using the freshly picked berries. The seed kits also include thorough instructions and a DVD outlining the germination and care of the seedlings.

Dormant-Goji-Berry-Plant.jpgIf you’re interested in growing your own Goji Berry plants you may want to opt for the spring delivered plants at this point, or you can try one of the Goji Berry seed growing kits. I’ll keep you posted on this end as to how my Goji Berry plants survive the winter and what they look like next spring.

Other Related Vegetable Gardening Posts:

  • Thank you for this very interesting piece on a new and different plant. I’m going to try to keep it in mind when I get my own garden, soon I hope.

  • Millie Kaping

    Was just given some Goji seed to try. Thanks for the info. I am at the Southern edge of the old zone 6, so may try planting some out this year with protection. I’ll also hold some over in the greenhouse… just in case. Millie

  • Hi! We also grow and sell Organic Tibetan Goji Berry Plants and Seeds with very detailed growing instructions. We have these on our website & on Ebay. The Goji Berry plant is an amazing plant full of life and energy. It is a little tempermental growing from seed, but once they are a couple of months old they are very hardy and drought resistant. Good Luck and Have an Awesome Day!

  • Bud

    We provide wholesale and retail goji berry plants and seedlings as well as grafted Japanese maples, plants and shrubs.

  • Dale Callaway

    I would like to know about Goji plants and hungry wild animals. Do deer and woodchucks mean high fences are required? I live in CT

    Thanks, Dale

    P.S. I found seed picked from dried berries germinate easily in damp paper towels, though you must be patient.

  • Kenny Point

    Hi Dale, this is my first year growing goji berry plants and I have them surrounded by a piece of wire garden fencing, but I’m not aware of wild animals taking a particular liking to goji berries or doing damage to the plants. If deer are a problem I would definitely protect the young plants until they grow large enough to survive being nibbled and pruned by wildlife. The nursery where I purchased my plants did indicate having a problem with wasps feeding on the ripening berries, forcing them to enclose their goji berry plants within a fine mesh material cover.

  • Dale Callaway

    Thanks Kenny-

    I use individual nets (Wedding Veil from fabric stores is good/ cheap) for my blueberries. I drape over and losely knot it at the bottom. I was thinking of puting the Gojis along side them. Do you think they would like soil as moist as the blues, and what about the companion plant chemistry interaction???
    I bet those smart wasps and yellow jackets love them. I be forewarned!

    Thanks, Dale

  • Kenny Point

    I think the Goji Berries would be compatible with the blueberry bushes, my only concern would be that the blueberries prefer soil that is more acidic than what the goji berries would usually grow in.

  • Hi Dale, Goji Berry plants will grow in any type of soil, from sandy to heavy clay, but they prefer a well drained soil of moderate quality. The Goji does not like a lot of water, so do not plant in wet or soggy soil as they will not last more than a couple weeks. As I remember from being a child in Michigan & picking blueberries with my grandmother, blueberries like it moist to wet, so I am not sure that they would be a very good companion plant for the Goji.

  • Dale Callaway

    I’m getting a good picture in my head of what it’s like to be a Goji!! They sound more like those gone wild rosebushes that like to take over CT meadows: space to sprawl, good field soil, full sun, and enough lime to lean slightly toward alkalinity.

    Thank you all for the help, Dale

  • Brian

    I think they (Goji Berries) are a terrific plant. I started a few inside, and some are doing well, others are not. What I wonder is what zones they are compatible in. Im zone 5. I cant wait for the fruit!

  • Alex

    does anybody know if you need more than one Goji plant for pollination to get fruit?

  • Jason

    How many goji berries can you expect to have (on average) annually for each plant?


  • We are starting to do some work and growing of gojis here in northern Michigan(zone 6). You can start goji from the dried fruit you buy in the store, we used organic sourced.
    The germination rate was about 50%-60%, not to bad for packaged dry fruit that were not intended to germinate. There are many seeds in each berry so you only need a few berries to get started. Suggest not planting the whole seed as this will make a messy clump of seedlings. Better to remove a few select seeds for each pot.

    The seedlings grow slow, at first at least, and are about 2 weeks old now and about 1″ high.

    We wish to produce gojis on our organic berry farm close to Traverse City, MI

    Spread the GOJI throughout the world!

  • Kenny Point

    Alex, I’ve never seen any indication that you need to grow more than one Goji Berry plant for pollination in order to get fruit and I know that there aren’t separate male and female plants like with Kiwis.
    Jason, I just planted my Gojis last fall and can’t advise you on their production numbers. They start to bear fruit after two years and come into full production after about four years.

  • Jason

    Thank you for your replies. Keep us all updated on your progress. ^-^

    I hope to buy some goji seeds and start growing my own as well. I live in an apartment in Toronto, so it might prove to be more difficult. But I will keep working at it.

    I want to learn a lot about how to maintain them etc before i start.

  • Janet

    I am interested in trying to grow goji berries in Sarasota, Florida. Does anyone have any experience with goji berries in subtropical climates?

  • Sinclair

    My Experience Growing Goji

    Lycium, wolfberry or goji berry will grow and thrive in Northern Ohio.

    Ten years ago, I started some from seed purchased in the form of Chinese herb stock berries. I used bottom heat, placing the seeds in wet paper towels on a radiator. The resulting plants thrived next to the porch in a rented house, where the landlord finally cut them down as a nuisance several years after we moved.

    Last year I read about “Goji” berries and wondered at the claims that there is a better species or sub-species from Tibet. Some sources said it’s true, others claimed it is BS.
    I wanted to plant some from seed and not to chance lose out, I ordered an ounce of the Tibetan berries for something like $15. The seller also offered “viable” Tibetan Goji seeds for ten dollars for three. I bought some although I did not believe his claim that the harvested, sun-dried Goji berries contain non-viable seed. After all, even the allegedly “inferior” Chinese berries, from the cheapest Asian supermarkt samples did germinate for me in past years.

    I tested the expensive allegedly “viable” seed against some of the seed from the sun-dried berries. Percentage of germinating seeds seemed about the same, so spare your money.

    I placed the sprouted seed into large plastic pots in the quart and gallon range last spring. This spring I have eight plants that are doing very nicely.

    We just purchased a house and I’ll be planting the Goji plants there, where I intend to propagate them and grow a bunch more. Another name for the plant is “matrimony vine,” and they have rather narrow, long, spiny thorns (maybe not true thorns like a hawthorn or rose).

    Summarizing, these are one of the easier plants to grow from seed, and they thrive in this zone (Northern Ohio), They do grow up without needing a trellis. The leaves have usages in herbal medicine too: crushed leaves soothe insect bites and I’ve read of people adding them to the vegetable juicer with other items.

    Try growing Goji from seed. You can’t go wrong. Use seed from the “Tibetan” berries if you can get them, “just in case,” because who knows… they may be the better herbal product.

  • I collected some goji seeds from some dried goji berries that I bought at our local Wegmman’s. I planted most of a flat in potting mix (3-5 per cell)and put it under lights on a heat mat. about half sprouted in the first week, and by the second week I had what I estimate to be nearly 95% germination! I’m guessing that these little seeds really like warm feet for germination. I have since transfered them to 4 inch pots (still with potting mix) and they are growing vigorously! Now I just need to decide where to plant my goji plantation!

  • Ken

    Janet, I live a not south of you in Venice and I have 3 plants that are doing OK. They are starting to bloom right now. Now to see if they will produce fruits. They do not like wet feet, I used to have 15 of them I started from seed, I gave away 8 of them and kept 7. I lost all the plants that were in low areas in the yard. Only the ones planted high along a bank are doing fine. Of the 8 I gave away I know 4 died and one is hanging on and the other 3 that are planted on a mound are doing well. Good luck.

  • Corey

    I have been growing Goji’s for over a year now, I have multiple plants and some started in the front yard. I would suggest everyone use the fertilizer supplied by Timpanogos Nursery. You will notice a huge gain in growth. The plants tend to be stronger when fertilized. If you plan on planting in your yard I suggest using some sort of soil conditioner (peet moss, vermiculite, perlite, etc) to make sure your goji has a good home for its roots. I am also starting to grow these hydroponically, no results on this yet but I will have more to come.

  • Peter Banham

    Hi Ken,
    I found your website when I was looking for info on the Goji Berry.
    I live in Hampshire in Southern England (U.K.) & I have just purchased three plants thru the QVC shopping channel. I planted two in large pots (1 in ericaceous soil & 1 in soil from my compost heap) the third I planted down in my veg plot which is green clay.
    I will endeavour to let you know how each turns out.

  • Hi, another Brit here. I’ve recently purchased 6 Goji plants from a company in Guernsey. I’ve got 3 in pots and 3 on my allotment. 4 are doing well and 2 are struggling but still alive. I live in Kent which is commonly known as the garden of England so if Goji Berries don’t grow here I’ve got a problem. The soil is a bit clayey but has plenty of horse poo dug in. We’ve had lots of the usual British sunshine and showers, so far I’m really pleased on how the Goji Berry plants are doing. They are causing a bit of curiosity with the old boys down on the allotments. They have never heard of them before, they are all growing potatoes and cabbages, then comes in a woman growing strange berry bushes!!
    I am a bit concerned as to how big they will grow, one site says they can grow to 8ft by 12ft, is this true? If so I will definately have to move them.

  • Rob

    Hi Ken, How are the Goji plants doing now ? I have a couple hundred of the Tibetan Goji growing now in 1 Gallon pots that I started in seed trays hydroponically 7 months ago. They are doing much better now but even at this age most can not handle full hot sun quite yet. But they are getting close. I am guessing they are self pollinating but have yet to hear of or found any confirmation as to such. I suspect the seed must be of the wild variety as there is little uniformity in size and shape of each plant or group of plants. They do like water in the seedling state but too much will cause new growth to collapse too. Growing lights appear to work well in these beginning stages.
    If you have further information or recommendations I would be most Thankful. Rob

  • Kenny Point

    Rob, Thanks for the info on your goji plants. I just posted a Goji Berry status update on the progress of my seedlings. By the way, what do you plan to do with a couple hundred Tibetan Goji Berry plants?

  • Esther

    Hi, I ordered a wolfberry plant (Gojo berry) from Raintree Nursery. It arrived in April (zone 5) and although it was only rated for a zone 7, I have kept it warm with straw insulation. It was about 2 1/2 ft. tall. It has since grown to about 5 feet tall (in 3 months) and spread out. I have trellised it, as they said to. I don’t have any blooms yet. It seems to do well even though we have a lot of rain. I did put a cup of the organic fertilizer called Yum Yum mix in the hole when I planted.

  • What climate do you need to grow these in?

    We live in Australia and it is a very hot place here, not very humid and certainly not rainforest type weather.

    Can you grow Goji Berries in this type of weather?

  • Ken

    Australia can’t be much hotter or humid than Venice Florida and I can now announce success! My 3 plants bloomed and produced little bright red berries. OK do I only managed 1/4 cup of them but hey its a start. Plant them on a mound if you get lots of rainfall as they do not like wet feet. So yes they will bloom and fruit in an area that does not experience cool weather.

  • Joni

    We planted five young, very tender Goji berry bushes this past spring. After a long period of struggle, two are still doing poorly (never really grew and are now actually smaller than they were when we planted them!), and three are finally doing fairly well. We have had VERY HOT and dry conditions and I am watering, but not frequently. My question is, when should we prune them and how much? Many thanks for any suggestions.

  • Corey

    In my experiments the Goji plants DO NOT like change. When I first started growing Goji plants I started them indoors and tried to move them into the yard in later spring. Out of 12 plants only one survived and it is now my indoor plant.

    I started 8 outdoor plants from seed keeping them in the full (hot 100+) sun. When the reached about 12 inches tall I planted them in very well drained soil which is a mixture of the natural clay in my yard, peat moss, steer manure, and mulch. They have been in the front yard in full sun for about 2 months now. They have grown to about 2-2.5 feet. I water them two to three times a week making sure to check saturation of the soil. I have found that these are very easy to grow as long as they start and stay in the same conditions.

    One note about indoor vs outdoor growing. I have found that the outdoor plants are much stronger and have a larger root system than the indoor plants. I have one indoor plant that is about 5 ft tall and it required support very early on. The outdoor plants on the other hand have not required any support (this may or may not change)
    The outdoor plants also have much thicker and darker green leaves than the indoor plant. I keep the indoor plant in a window with 8 hours direct sunlight whereas the outdoor plants get full sun all day long. The soil for both is roughly the same mixture.

    For those who would like to grow these plants, I would suggest starting them from seed. I have gotten 100% germination success. I use 4 inch plastic pots with the same soil mixture listed above, making sure the soil remains moist (not soggy). In two to three weeks plants will begin to emerge. When they reach 2-3 inches tall I lightly fertilize to give them a good start. This may not be the best method but as stated above I have had wonderful success

  • Rick Fanning

    After reading that Lycium Barbarum is naturalized in all but 2 states in the continental U.S.,I thought I might try a little experiment. I cleaned the soil in a large pot that has been used to grow a cherry tomato plant and added a little compost to the top of the soil. I then planted a number of goji seeds in the dry soil of the planter and left it out in the elements. I was away on Labor Day weekend and when I returned I found that it had rained sufficiently to germinate 2 of the goji berry seeds and they were growing quite well right out in nature in 85 plus degree temps and only enough rain to keep the soil moist. No soaking in paper towels, setting in pots with cellophane over them or anything like that. When they grow a little more, I will move them from the planter to a suitably prepared spot in front of my place. I suspect more of the goji seeds will germinate in the coming days. The two that I have germinated in about 5 days! I am considering planting a few directly into the garden soil and see what happens.

    I live on the Cumberland Plateau in East Tennessee.


  • Jenny

    Hi – I planted my goji berry seeds at the start of our English summer (a summer that has been increidibly wet, with a few sunny days thrown in!) in a small polythene covered frame, in small pots of compost. They took a few weeks, but all of them germinated. The frame is in a postiton where it gets about 2 or 3 hours of direct sunlight. Once the seedlings were a few inches tall, I re-potted three in larger containers, with the same compost. I wasn’t sure if it is advised to pinch the top of the seedlings, so when these repotted seedlings reached about 5 inches, I pinched one but not the other two. One of the others is now approximately three months old, and roughly 22 inches tall, still very fragile, and needs support. It is very tall and thin, but has recently got some new shoots at the base. The plant I pinched is bushier that the one I just mentioned, and the leaves are a slightly darker green, and larger. Could anyone let me know what is advised where pinching is concerned, and also if my plants sound at about the right stage for their age!!! I almost gave up on them as they didn’t grow at all for quite a while, but they have suddenly taken off again. We are now at the end of our summer, and I am planning to keep them in the polythene frame over the winter. Thanks for reading this! Jenny :o)

  • Jon

    Hey Sinclair… I am also in northern Ohio… I would love to connect and discuss goji berries with you…disband9@yahoo

    take care

  • ROSE

    does anyone can donate some seed of goji for someone like me. im here in the philippibnes im iinterested to plant it in my yard. it was said its good for the ill im eagerly to help my friends to cure by these plant so that i w ill plant it in my yard to help my friends and my family.

  • Jerrica

    I was given goji berries for christmas to grow inside. I am totally new to the world of gardening and was wondering how I should go about taking care of the seeds that I planted about 3 weeks ago. Do i have to worry about over watering? How do I know that I planted them correctly? Please help! 🙂 I just don’t want to kill them. Also, I live in seattle so sun light is not an option, especially this time of year.

  • Janet

    Ken in Venice…..would you be willing to part with some seeds, or another plant for a neighbor in Sarasota. Was hoping to find dried berries in local stores, but have had no luck.
    I ‘do’ container vegetable gardening in our backyard, so they’d have a fighting chance.

  • Corey

    Try http://www.localharvest.com

    They sell goji seeds. Good quality I was able to get 10+ plants from one pack of seeds.

  • Janet

    Thanks, Corey. Just ordered some seeds. Hope to grow a natural fence of them down one side of our yard!

  • Sam

    I live in Northern California, San Francisco Bay area to be exact. I am intrique with the goji which I happened to see in a deli recently. Where can I get goji seedlings or seeds to start. Is there any kind souls out there would spare me a few goji seeds just to try.

  • Kenny Point

    Sam, if you saw the berries than you have a good source for Goji Berry seeds right there. Even if the berries are dried the goji seeds will usually germinate. Good luck!

  • Virginia

    I live in southern New Mexico with soil that will grow most anything. I am about to start my experience with growing Goji bushes which I have ordered and are bare root and 36″ tall. Does any one live in this part of the country and have experience with growing these plants. All help and advice is appreciated.

  • Fatima

    I am looking for Goji seeds and fruit. I found one fruit looking like Goji as I saw on different web sites. I am not sure. Can you please help me by describing completely its shape, size and also the shape, size and colour of its seed. How many seeds are in one berry. Please guide me how can I get them. I am in Pakistan. Can they be grown during hot summers.

  • Gerry

    Ken in Venice, I am interested in growing Goji in Florida also, in the Charlotte County area. The problem seems to be that they need to go dormant in order to flower. Did your bushes go dormant over there in Venice. What do you think of the chances of good cultivation here in Florida?

  • Janet

    Planted some goji seeds in plastic seed starter trays on Jan. 26. Kept watered at the bottom and misted on the top in a sunny area on the back porch. Three weeks later, a couple of sprouts have shot up. Hope to see more in the next few days. I am in Sarasota, FL.

  • Corey

    Janet, That is great. Keep us posted.

    I have a funny Goji story. I have an indoor Goji that my 2 year old son destroyed. The plant was about 5 ft tall with many branches. Now it stands about a foot tall and, until today, had zero leaves. It looks like I will have 6-10 new branches to look forward to. Once established these things are strong plants.

    PS I now have the plant at work where my son cant get at it anymore.

  • Randy

    I would like to know if the goji berry would grow in zone 9? Thanks

  • Kenny Point

    Randy, Timpanogos Nursery raises goji berry plants and they are located in Henderson, Nevada so I would think that you should be able to grow goji berries in your region.

  • Natalie

    Do the Goji berry plants need full sun or can they grow in partial sun or shaded area.

  • Corey

    They do best in full sun, but they will grow in part sun and shaded areas. The more sun they get the faster they grow and the better the berries will be.

  • doug clegg

    I bought some dried goji berries and extracted seeds from 6… yielded about 100 seeds. I stuck them in soil, put them in a sunny south window and they germinated like crazy. I will let you know how they do in Idaho this year.
    I love the fruit and have found them excellent re-hydrated in my morning oatmeal.
    Nampa Idaho

  • Hey Rose and Fatima – let me know your addresses and I’ll send you a few dried berries! Email me: vgts (at) caseyconnor [dot] org

  • Tom Rudy

    Bought 2 Crimson Star Goji plants 4/20/08. It is 50 degrees where I live (Seattle) right now. Is it ok to plant? Best soil? How far apart? Do they climb? Best nutrition? Have got aged horse manure.

  • Kenny Point

    Tom, I think you’d be safe to set your goji berry plant into the ground now. Average, well drained soil is recommended. Fertilizing isn’t required but will help speed the goji’s growth and production. Use a nitrogen rich fertilizer to improve plant growth and a one that is high in phosphorous during the flowering and fruiting periods. From what I understand the goji plants will take on more of a bush form and grow between six and eight feet wide.

  • Cedar

    I recieved a cutting in a plastic bag from an old Chinese herbalist who was my teacher. He had been growing Gojis in Seattle for at least 10 years. I put it in a 5 gallon bucket with the hopes that I would have a home garden to plant it in soon. It’s been about 3 years, the plant is (unfortunately) still in the bucket, but it’s growing and leaves are sprouting. It’s survived plenty of neglect in the backyard, and has now been moved to Eastern Washington and is still doing well. I’ll be checking back for more tips as this is a very sentimental plant. Thanks for all the info!

  • judy smith

    Hi, I purchased dried goji berries just to try! Thought they were NOT NICE!! but loathe to waste things and just popped the remainder in compost & covered and put in greenhouse. Forgot all about until suddenly overcome with loads of green shoots. Complete forgotten what I had planted and then remembered the goji packet rejected for eating. Have now repotted and find I have more than 40 of them!! Grateful for all the info you have given on growing on and pleased to hear that they should be hardy (good job as we live in North Cumbria, UK). Will keep some inside greenhouse and plant rest out and hope they survive our winters.!! Now need to find something to do with the berries as personally couldn’t stand the things… so they MUST be good for you!!

  • Kenny Point

    I wasn’t too excited about the taste of dried goji berries either, but they are supposed to be very good for you. 🙂 Just hoping that fresh vine ripened goji berries taste a lot better than the dried fruits… they weren’t terrible, just not my idea of fruit for snacking. Good luck with your crop goji berry seedlings!

  • Hi everyone! To those that didn’t like the taste of the dried Goji Berries. Don’t give up! Try some from a different company. Not all goji berries taste the same. Through the years I have tried different suppliers berries and some are sweet and others are more sour. The health benefits are definitely worth searching for a Goji Berry that you like! Have an Amazing Day!

  • I am very interested in the gogi berries. Where can I find sweet ones to buy the dried berries, seeds or plants.
    If I can get seeds or dried berries I can get them started now. Some times a health food store will carry the dried gogi but I want to be sure that they are good and sweet. Is there a place here in the usa or canada?
    Thank you
    Please e-mail me at vlucille543@gmail.com

    Lucille Crabtree
    Florence, Oregon.

  • Norman

    My wife uses goji berries mainly in the Chinese soups she prepares. They give a nice mild sweetness which goes well with the more exotic tastes in there. They are traditionally used that way in China
    I planted three “dry roots” this year in our part of northern UK. One in a clay pot, two outside. Of the outside pair, one in full sun and one in partial shade. Of the three, the partial shade one grew leaves first and is growing upwards and outwards. It is a sandy/clay soil. The one in full sun has put out a couple of vertical shoots but seems more keen on growing horizontal creepers which are already almost two feet long. It is in a sandy soil. The last one, in the pot with potting soil and sand, is growing verrrry slowly but has a more conventional shape. It was very slow to produce leaves and I had almost given up hope.
    I am going to have to cut the creepers on the rapidly expanding one, which is a pity because they look so healthy!

  • Corey

    I have 5 Goji’s in my yard now. Two of them are doing amazingly well and 1 of them is producing a large crop of berries on its second year. The others are also doing well.

    I bought more seeds and started another 10 plants that I need to get in the ground soon. I have also learned how to propogate these plants. This is a great way to get more plants and decrease the amount of time before the plant produces berries.

    Kenny if I send you some pictures can you post them on your site?

  • Kenny Point

    Hi Corey, I would love to see the photos of your goji berry plants and may be able to include them in an upcoming article that I’m planning about propagating goji berry plants. You can email the photos to the address listed on my “contact me” page, thanks.

  • Joni

    Hi Corey – I would love to hear details about your experiences in getting your plants to thrive. I have several plants in the ground, also in their second year, and they are producing some berries too. One plant in particular is just growing like crazy. I am seeing some berries turn dark or get spots on them before ripening, though. And some of the leaves are drying and falling off some of the plants as well. Does anyone have any ideas on why this may be happening? Another question is that how large do the berries usually get? I was expecting something a bit larger than what I’m seeing with these plants (much smaller than wild blueberries). Thanks!

  • Corey

    Joni, How are you wattering? What kind of soil are your plants in? Have you noticed any insects or animals around your plants? You may need to add some organic fertilizer rich in potassium. This will improve your plants immune system.

    If you are allowing your Goji to grow naturally it will most likely have a lot of new shoots coming from the roots. If you want more of the plant energy to produce berries, prune the new shoots when you see them starting.

    The Goji berries are very small berries, but since your plant is only in its second year the berries will be smaller. Plants in the 4-5 year range produce larger crops consisting of larger berries.

  • Greetings from KwaZulu-Natal South Africa.
    Four weeks ago I planted some whole berries that I soaked for 8 hours in a seed tray using potting soil and worm castings. This was kept wet by spray every day. After 3 weeks I have over 200 little plants about 1cm high. Each berry has produced about 20 seedlings and more are starting to sprout. I have transplanted 60 into individule little seed pots about 4cm wide and 6cm deep and these I have placed in trays taking 21 in each tray. I live in apartment 8 floors above the ground. The plants are located by the window facing the sun. At the moment I am watering them lightly. Peace be with you. Om Shanti.

  • Miss D

    Did you know you can eat the leaves too? They are known as Gau Gei Choi or sometimes Chinese Box Thorn leaves and can be used in a similar way to spinach, although apparently shouldn’t be eaten raw (according to my source, anyway). They are sometimes used in soup in Chinese cooking. I’ve only tried them once as they can be difficult to get hold of in the UK, but if you’re growing your own then you have a ready supply on hand!

    I haven’t grown any yet, but I really want to try! Does anyone know the best time of year to plant the seeds? I read on another site that the seedlings have to be kept warm for the first year after germination, is this true?

  • Surfkat

    Hi, I planted 3 Gojis this year. They are growing GREAT, but they aren’t upright, they are sprawling like a spider. What should I do??? Thanks

  • Kenny Point

    My goji berry plants are growing like that also. I just use a tall stake and tie as many of the upright branches to the stake as possible to help support the plant and then let the side shoots sprawl if they want to.

  • Surfkat

    Thanks Kenny..I didn’t know if I should prune them or what. Have a great day!

  • kim

    I just got a bunch of seedling started from the dried goji I got at Whole Foods. They are doing well so far. I grew up with goji berries, but didn’t know the “value” of them. My grandmother in Canada grew them all over her backyard. I remember seeing the berries everywhere. She picked every single one of them, and dried them. She and my mom used them in soups. I ask my mom to ask my aunt who lived in my Grandma’s old house, to see if there were any of the goji plants left. Unfortunately, they’re all gone. I hope my seedlings will turn into nice plants. I have another kind of goji growing in the backyard of a rental house I own in Portland. My mom planted them decades ago. This goji is grown for it’s leaves. It does have berries, but are very small–so they’re not worth drying. I’m going to Portland next weekend, and will be bring back some cuttings so I can grew them in L.A.,

  • Guy

    How do you tell when a goji berry is ready for picking “ripe”. I have goji berrys onthe plant and there soft and red. Is a soft berry ripe?

  • Betty

    just want to say that goji berries are not meant to eaten dry! I am Chinese and we always put the dried goji berries in chicken soups to provide a sweet taste. goji berries are regarded highly in chinese culture/herbal medicine for thier health benefits. Unlike western medicine, which only look at the vitamins or fiber counts, Chinese herbal medicine is based on ‘experience’. As an example, plums are highly touted in America, but Chinese(medicine) consider plums ‘bad fruits’.

  • David

    I found this very reliable seller on eBay that sells live goji plants. I bought a few goji plants from him and they arrived very healthy. He doesn’t sell all year around, however, he lists them on eBay at least once or twice a month. They are usually sold very quickly. So, you will need to buy as soon as they are listed. His eBay user name is gojicenter

  • All the way from south africa…
    Got a few seeds from a friend from Australia(goji seeds)
    its now the second spring and my plants are doing well .Very excited

    email me anytime :falconza@ananzi.co.za

  • Neal in FL

    KEN IN VENICE! How is Goji dormancy achieved in FLORIDA?! If, as I read is true that, Goji needs dormancy to fruit, how does this occur in FL? Im in Pasco county, really eager to grow Goji.

  • jai

    I have plants from seed bought through JLHudson, Horizon and , I think, Sacred Suculents as well as from store-bought berries. Results: 50 or so mature plants bearing their first crop this year. I have staked and tied several of the larger plants, but this is less than satisfactory. Do you trellis them like raspberries? They are brittle and don’t like being blown about by the wind.
    I would like to cultivate between the rows and don’t want their branches lying on the ground.

  • Norman

    Hi Jai – I am pondering the same problem. My four plants are all a bit straggly. I am test-staking one and I cut one of the others back to see what would happen. The trimmed one is still looking like it wants to stay unkempt. However, this action led to an interesting observation. Instead of throwing away all the pieces I trimmed, I stuck them in the ground around the “mother” bush to see what would happen. Most of them appear to have rooted without any care from me and are growing and developing healthy shoots. Suddenly I have many new gojis to give away to friends!

  • Ron

    Hi, everyone. Sure is an enthusiastic blog. I went to Lassens heath foods and found goji dipped in yogurt. I melted off the yogurt in my mouth, cut the beery into 1/4s and put in small pots. i got 40 plants out of a few of the berries. In 2 weeks they germinated. I got around 60 small plants going when a ground squirrel ate 25 plants in one afternoon. He loved them. I now have a small bedding bench with clear pannels that keeps rocky out. Also, if any one has a recipe for goji and ground squirrel let me know.
    Also I am in Ventura county CA and would like to start a nursery for these berries. A green thumb to all, bye. Ron.

  • Michael O’Neil

    Hi everybody.
    I bought dried goji berries as a snack and opened up one of the berries.
    52 pips was found. I grew all 52 seedlings into 5cm tall plants by using cotton wool and water in direct sunlight and no wind. They are extremely fragile.
    They are most cleverest by addapting and dying multiple times to enrich the ground and adapt if neccesarry.
    They love sunlight, and hate wind until multiple brances grew out about 12 to 14 months later. lots of water with good draining ground. NO Tirf. I’m experimenting with tirf now. Biggest enemy is birds!

  • Hi,
    Nice to meet everyone here. I am happy to see many of you are interested in goji. I am from Zhongning China – “hometown of goji” and currently I am developing a web site (http://www.go-goji.com) to promote authentic Ningxia goji. There are a lot of misconception and confusion regarding goji’s production region and clinic benefits here in America, and this become my motiviation of developing this web site. I also introduce a super goji cultivar and other goji product like non-fruiting goji plant. It is my plan to provide useful tips on how to grow and manage goji plants (pruning, soil preference and climate preference, etc.) The website is still under construction but you are welcome to visit, and drop me a message if you need any advice and make comment. Thanks!

  • Sherry W

    I just got on a waiting list for plants to be shipped in Feb. Your suggestions and findings have helped me understand what I will have tremendously. I am in west central Arkansas, zone 7, and am intrugued by the health benefits of the berries hence my reason for purchasing. You’ve all got me excited to get mine going!!!

  • I started to sell ‘No1 of Ning-qi’ seeds(a super goji cultivar) now. please visit my website with your questions. Again, I have to claim, goji is go qi or gou chi zi or Chinese wolfberry. The production area are mainly in Ningxia, and other several provinces, but none of them are in Tibet. Do not be fooled by those online sellers who are selling Chinese wolfberry under the name of Tibet!

  • Betty,
    I am Chinese too, and I grew up in ‘hometown of goji’- zhongning county of ningxia. Actually goji can be eaten dry or fresh, but few people do that due to most people think they can only be used in medicine. Since I grew up from goji country I ate a lot dried and fresh goji berries. The only bad experience I remember was 30 years ago when I was a boy, one hot summer day I ate a lot of fresh goji berries from a goji farm in front of our house (at that time farms was run by communes so it was free in some sense) and got a nose bleeding – I asked a doctor later he told me goji is very rich in nutrients, too much goji for a small boy could cause ‘shang huo’ and nose bleeding.

  • sharon

    I would love to try this goji berry I love to try new and different plants in ohio sounds like fun. I do wonder will it become a problem plant? Just reading every ones comments sound like the seeds start rather easy and new plants can start from stem on the ground will I have many plants growing out in my yard I wonder? From the berries that fall or perhaps birds. Just a thought. I still want to try and grow a few. Any one in ohio have these growing for a few years Love to have some seeds

  • I found the taste not so good, however I found they grow on me over time. When I was in the Philippines they use to put them in soup.


    In 2007 I bought a pot of seeds from Timpanogs nursery in Utah! 22 seeds sprouted. Planted in late May, they were 8 in. tall. Rabbits ate all but 1 in about a day. I caged it with concrete wire mesh about 2 feet round and put chicken wire on the inside of it.In 2 weeks i took about 20 cuts and ended up with 9 to plant July 1. They grew to 3′ tall. I did’t mulch. We had one of the coldest and snowiest winter on record in eastern Iowa. None of them made it. Did the same thing in May of 2008. 20 cuts and 9 plants.They all grew to 6′ and I mulched them with about 18″ of grass and leaves. Goji don’t propagate very good as i tryed in late Oct again. I would like to hear about your propagating methods!

  • Kenny Point

    Terry, propagating goji berry plants is an interesting topic that I have been planing to post an article about but just haven’t gotten around to it yet. Turns out that goji’s seem to be pretty easy to propagate but starting them from seeds may be the least preferable method. I think that using cuttings is the best way to go if you are trying to start new goji berry plants. Browse around in the comment sections of the goji berry articles on this site and you’ll find examples of gardeners starting plants easily from cuttings, with the extra bonus of them bearing fruit sooner than plants started from seeds. I had the same experience with rabbits eating a plant down to the ground, but the goji recovered and re-grew better than new. Good luck with your goji plants.

  • Janie

    Is Timpanogos Nursery still in business? On their website, in the past 3 months, I have signed up for newsletter, called their 800# many, many times, tried to find a local Utah #, and ordered (or thought I did) a seed kit. I’ve gotten no results from any of these attempts.

  • Corey

    Try LocalHarvest.com

    That is where I buy my seeds from. I have gotten 75-80% germination from their seed kits. I would suggest starting the seeds in peat moss. The young gojis love the acidic soil.

  • Seb,
    For the bad taste of goji berries, I’ve heard quite a few complaints similar to yours. One thing in my mind is the berries were not produced by medicinal Lycium Barbarum – for example pale wolfberry has bitter taste, it is another variety in Lycium family in SW United states. The other I guess is due to unfavorable growing environment. A Canadian guy complained bitterness of goji too and he mentioned the plants were from China many years ago. For any one who grows goji, my recommendation always is select the best cultivar and don’t mess up with any unknown varieties. If you have more questions, just go to my website go-goji.com. I am doing my best to correct people’s wrong idea about goji.

  • Corey,
    Goji prefers to ligh alkaline soil with pH ranges from 7.0-7.7. It can even grow in soil with pH of 8.5. So it was choice of crop growing in some northwestern China areas where soil is too alkaine for other crops to grow.

  • Corey

    Not in my experience. I experimented last year. 10 pots with different mixtures ranging from 100% peat moss to 100% yard soil (ph 7.8) The gojis in the 100% peat moss grew faster and taller than those in the other pots. After I saw this I added peat moss to two of my 5 2yr old plants. The two that received the peat moss grew faster and produced more berries than those that I left alone. Each of them received equal amounts of sun and water. I only speak from experience.

  • Corey

    Also my berries are very sweet and juicy. I must be doing something right.

  • Corey,
    Now I know what you mean. But I think the fast growth and healthy plants are not related to acidity of soil. Instead better aeration and drainage by mixing peat moss might play the role. I also add peat moss to soil for growing goji.

  • Goji surely can grow in acid soil but it grows better if soil pH>7. However soil dainage is essential for healthy plants and better yield. water logging can kill young goji plants in short period of time.

  • Mike

    How much did you guys pay for your plants? Have any of you tried to grow in Southern California, if so what obsticles have you ran into(planting from seed in spring)? Your help would be greatly appreciated. I bought some seeds and plan on selling them here at the nursery, and have no clue where to start.


    I am from Bahrain and would like to grow Goji berry in my house
    garden .
    Bahrain is very hot and wet in summer , we grow tomato in this time . We have alot of date palm trees which Bahrain famuse with
    if any one got advise about plantting rare plants please give me information
    my e-mail= FBUHAMAD@CAA.GOV.BH
    Thanks all

  • Cathy R.

    I have grown Goji berry for three years now. The plants grew very well and produced flowers and few berries in the first year. However, I noticed that the leaves have powdery mildew in the second year and then the leaves fell off. I cut it back and this year the plants grow well but still have powdery mildew on the leaves. Does any one have the same kind of problem? What do I do to get rid off the powdery mildew without using the commercial products? Please advise. Thank you very much.

  • Cathy,
    Where is your location? Is it due to warm and humid climate? It is not common for goji to have such problem in major goji growing areas in China. Have you tried multi-purpose fungicide?

  • jim hale

    Goji berry plants. How much to purchase four.

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  • Andrew in Sydney

    Hi I’ve started growing this hightly sought after fruit and deeply want to grow them for their nutrional benefits. I bought 1 tree from the nursey which looked really heathly, lots of leaves. However after a week in the backyard, most of the leaves were eaten!! I do not know by what and how can I protect them?? A fine mesh, some wedding lace from the material shop?? In the meantime I will buy some dried versions to plant from seed from the local asian shop. Any ideas/tips would be greatly appreciated. Wish me well and I’m glad I have found this helpful community.

  • michael eastlake

    Goji’s can be done…I recommend plants rather than seeds. I live in southern OH …bought 1 yr old spring plants from Timpanagous Nurs. Grew them in 1 gal plastic pots ( arrived in late April ) until midsummer when I knew they were OK at 18″… do not overwater during that early period or they will probably croak! Set in permanent beds in July … they like full sun once they are that far along. I supported them in small-size tomato cages that 1st summer in my yard, and surrounded them in a tall bed of zinnias and just let ’em be.
    They overwintered fine. Fed them in October for the 1st winter. They are now ( May, 2nd year in my garden ) 4-5 feet tall and bushing heavily. Use Fish Emulsion ( mostly nitrogen ) one time in the spring to green them up. Then feed heavy phosphate each month thru summer to create buds, flowers, and berries. I also started seeds … warning! they are extremely sensitive to light in the first 3 months when propogating the seeds. In 25 years gardening, they are the hardest to seed start of all the plants I have started … might be worth it to buy 1 year plants, unless you have a greenhouse where you can really baby them. My 2 year plants are booming. If you want to grow them, just be real attentive to not too much water early.

  • From KwaZulu-Natal South Africa.
    Last year I soaked some berries in water for + – 12 hours. I then used a nursery bought seed tray and half filled it with fine sifted compost. I opened the soaked berries and spread the seeds over the serface and sifted compost over the top covering the seeds by + – 4mm. I used a 500ml bottle with a hand pump to spray the compost until water came out the bottom. I placed the tray in a drip tray to prevent water leaking onto the winowsil. I covered the seed tray with a ceramic tile left over from when I tiled the bathroom wall. I kept the seeds in my flat window facing the sun. The seeds were protected from the direct sun by the tile and at the same time kept the soil moist.

    After + – 14 days of keeping moist with the hand spray the seeds started pushing through. I started to leave the tile off during the early morning and late afternoon in direct sunlight. When they had two leaves open with the next set of leaves just starting to grow I started to leave the tile off all day. When they were developing their third set of leaves I started to replant the seedlings into small pots with the same compost mixture. Over two hundred plants over the next three weeks. First two days they were shaded and then gradually placed into full sun all day keeping wet by soaking with water every morning. I planted one seedling into a very large ceramic pot which I have in my loung just in front of the same widow with the seedlings. I also used a aluminium rod which I pushed into the soil and extending three meters above the pot as a stay.

    Within one year the plant has grown higher than the three metre rod and has trailed down below the pot. It also has many branches trailng all over which I have brought down and tied onto the stay. It is really an impressive sight. I have had a yield of over 300 berries (the last 10 only yesterday) and the tree is only one year old. Please don’t be afraid to experiment. I gave the seedling from this batch away to friends (Over 150 in small pots). The others have been planted in the complex garden and have oly reached a height of one metre high also with many branches. I say GO FOR IT. Temperatures during the last 6 month hve been in the region of 30 degrees centigrade. Getting cooler now winter approaching slowly.

  • Ryan

    Hi all. This is for the goji growers in Florida worried about the dormancy period.

    I have an old friend who is an avid apple grower here in central Ohio and also FLORIDA. Yes apples do grow and fruit in Florida, but they do very much need a dormant period in order to fruit. The way he mocks dormancy… he pulls off all the leaves during the “winter” months. If you have a well enough established plant you may want to try this. From what I know about the plants that need dormancy, if you don’t give i to them they can die after a few years, with no dormancy. May be urgent, may not. I don’t really know much about goji as I’m just into growing them since two months ago.
    If you have any thoughts/comments on this I would love to hear them at naturalelementlandscape@hotmail.com . Good luck to everyone.

  • Loh

    I live in San Jose, California. I have Goji plants that produce alot of berries every year. They start to grow a lot of leaves in spring before they flower. However, a few weeks later, the leaves would have powdery mildew. This happens every year. The berries seems fine.

    Can someone tell me what causes the leaves to have the white powdery stuff? and how do I get rid of them?
    Please advise.
    Thank you very much.

  • jenifer

    I bought a small (maybe ten to twelve inch tall bear root) goji plant a few years ago from jungs catalog. I planted it next to my house (I live just east of Cincinnati) and didn’t pay much attention to it after that. A year later it was over six feet tall. It is on its fourth summer now and I have had to prune it back extensively and often. It will grow over a foot in a few weeks! I have not had a big harvest yet but what I have had is awesome! It is hard to keep the birds away (I even have a robins nest in the middle of the bush). It flowers and fruits later than what most sites say it will and the berries have been small so far but everything I have read seems to indicate that the fruit gets larger and more plentiful with age. I also found that I can start new plants from cuttings. Since I have plenty of them when I prune my plant I am going to try starting some in pots. Overall I am very happy with my five dollar investment!

  • Janie

    Jenifer, I have planted goji seedlings northeast of Louisville. I’m glad to hear that yours enjoys the climate. What side of the house did you plant yours?

  • Norman

    I posted exactly one year ago about my experience growing goji plants. I had just planted them early in 2008. I have recently discovered something very interesting which may be of interest here.

    A friend from Hong Kong visited recently. She mentioned that the goji leaves were very nutritious and she proceeded to strip them from the long “creeper” shoots on one of my plants. We then had them in soup. Very nice too. However, just over one week after she left I noticed that the branches she had stripped were showing new leaf growth…and flowers were forming! The flowers are only on the stripped branches, nowhere else. They have not appeared on my other goji plants that were not stripped. Possibly this is stress flowering?

    So, is anyone aware that this might be a known technique to force flowering? Remember that I have only had the plants just over one year.

  • Hi Norman,
    Very good observation. That your friend stripped leaves from goji plant is equivalent to ‘prunning’. Prunning can greatly stimulate flower buds emergence and fruiting. I think prunning contributes at least 30% of yielding of goji berries. The other two important considerations are fertilizer/water management and disease/pest control. Of course of all considerations the biggest one is climate suitability. I have grown goji for a couple of years and my cultivar is NQ-1, really impressed of their early yielding ability, I might put some pictures of my one-year-old plant bearing berries on my website.
    By the way, goji leaves are very nutritious. I harvested some and dry them up to make tea, I also harvest fresh to put in soup. A new cultivar was developed in China to produce only leaves, I got some goji leaves tea bags from China, they are REALLY GOOD….

  • Kenny Point

    That is very interesting, I had heard that the goji leaves were edible but didn’t know if it was just one particular variety that produced the edible leaves. I have noticed that the gold finches love goji leaves and have stripped some of the branches on my goji until there aren’t any leaves left. So far I haven’t noticed that that defoliation treatment has encouraged any flower or fruit production. Strangely, a goji plant towards the front yard hasn’t been bothered by the finches and it does produce flowers and berries even though it is much smaller in size.

  • Dear Kenney,

    Please don’t be fooled. There are dozens of species of Lycium throughout the world. Not all are edible, and only one (1) is Goji. Lycium barbarum L. (true Goji) is 100% edible, including the root (Germanium is found in the tap root of the Goji Tree). The berry from Lycium barbarum L. is sweet, and its leaves make a wonderful tea. Please visit GojiTrees.com and learn the truth about the amazing Goji berry.

  • Birgitta Marklund


    I have a goji plant stared from a cutting. I just picked all the ripe berries and will eat them fresh. So far I have grown the plant in a pot.
    Question: do I cut the plant down for the winter (Vancouver, B.C.) Thank you.

  • Birgitta,
    Will you leave it outdoors or indoor? I recommend you leave it outdoors to let it go through dormancy. Prunning is necessary to stimulate better yield for next year but you don’t need to cut it down to overwinter because winter in Vancouver is pretty mild.

  • brandonlasvegas

    I have been growing goji for 4 year now in the hot las vegas sun they do very well. I have to water them daily to keep them cool in the summer. But they grow really well in the spring and fall. Remember to keep those roots from having wet feet.

  • Daryl

    I have been experimenting growing goji’s hydroponically for a couple months. I would like to grow some of them indoors and some outdoors. Is it true that if you strip all the leaves off the goji it will think it’s in it’s dormancy stage? Has anyone tried this? Also, does anyone know if it is possible to get goji’s to flower in the first year?

  • Daryl,
    The only way to make goji enter its dormancy is to lower temperatures close to freezing. New leaves will grow after the old leaves are striped off.
    If you grow goji from seeds, you won’t be able to see flowers the first year, from cuttings, yes.

  • From KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.
    My plant indoors flowered and produced over 100 berries in first year. I also stripped all leaves from plant 2 months ago and now not only new leaves but new branches prolifically all along original branches.
    Plant in large container directly in front of North facing window. Plenty compost and worm castings mixed with good potting soil.

  • Pamela

    HELP. I am at my wits end. I am trying to start goji berries in a hydroponic set up. My initial results of 70+ plants were very good. Very sturdy healthy bushy plants that stood up straight and very proud. My problem is I have been infested with aphids. So far everything I have tried (oil,water,soap mixture, organic insectiside) has not harmed the aphids but have killed my plants instead. I pick aphids daily (yuck) but cant manage to control them. I dont think its an option for ladybugs this time of year. Does anyone have any sugestions before my beautiful plants all loose the battle.

  • Pmela,
    Try garlic solution. I used garlic solution this summer to control aphids and it seemed working. YOu can also add sulfer powder mixed with garlic solution for better disease/insect control. Crash garlic using blender, adding water and blend again until solution become well mixed. YOu can add sulfer powder at this time, try different concentration to see which works best.

  • Leaving larger space between the plants and keeping plant and soil misture low can also help. How large is your plants?

  • You can order dried raw organic goji berries that you would eat and then you can take the seeds from the berries itself and plant those. That way you would know for sure you were growing a complete 100% raw organic goji berry plant.

  • Valerie

    How do you prune a goji plant?

  • Frank Boas

    We live on Quadra island off Campbell river in British Columbia. 200 gojis planted outside all died in winter, wet and cool over several months may have done them in! Maybe an umbrella would help but plants in greenhouse allowed to dry out on soil surface all survived. All are from seed, a few are fruiting after 3 years up to 8 feet tall and with several skinny shoots. Pruned some tops off some plants to promote side shoots and left some to see how far they’ll grow. One plant had 400 blooms but few berries others a few blooms. We’re not as wet as Vancouver.

  • Frank,
    Like you said your goji shoots are pretty skinny – which is not a good thing for goji plants to overwinter. Prunning will help with strong stem and shoots. Visit my website go-goji.com for more goji cultivation info.

  • Terri

    Hello, I just read an article in a magazine called Home Farmer Feb.2010 and I am very excited about this goji plant and I want to start now. I live in Atlanta,GA and I want to find a plant or seeds. Is there anyone local who can help or give me info on where to find a plant quickly before spring. We have a good cold period and should take care of the dormant need.

  • Terry,
    check with:

  • Ray

    My first try with Goji hope to get berries my first season. I am trying a deep watering method

  • Wendy Diltz

    Hello My mom and I have purchased a goji berry plant and it is to be shipped to us at the end of March. We are hoping for a good growth and harvest off the plant. We have heard of the healing properties of the fruit. We will let you know how it goes with us.

  • Ed

    What is the best kind or fertilizer to use when planting a goji bush in Vermont. Organic or chemical? Do they like composted manure or ?

  • Dave

    I use seaweed firtelizer you can get in from Gojitree.com
    or some nursuries carry it

  • Frank Boas

    blooms are showing colors now around 6 weeks ahead of last year are we in for an early prolonged fire season? we just nabbed large batches of seaweed the sea being a few hundred feet away and placed around the Goji s temperature in greenhouse now over 80F have eliminated half or more of the shoots at base but have let some grow as tall as they can the best fruiting plant has 3or 4 shoots others had up to 20 have a good season

  • Frank Boas

    Jason thanks for pruning suggestion its being done

  • aceman

    “I purchased my Goji plants from Timpanogos Nursery.”

    I can’t find these guys on the web anymore.. I bought 3 plants from them 3 years ago.. I now have an entire area on the side of my property for growing Goji ..Grows great in so cal.
    Good luck to all….

  • Hi aceman,, I also bought my first 2 trees from Timpanogos Nursery. They told me they were “Tibetan Goji Trees.” Problem is, there is no such thing as a “Tibetan Goji Tree.” That is a “Tibetan Goji Hoax.” I have no idea what “cultivar” they were. I guess it is just as well. They both died, and Timpanagos faded into the sunset. I now have 11 healthy Da Ma Ye Goji Trees, 4 and 5 years old. I hope to taste fresh Goji this year. If not, I think I will drive to Jasons house.:o)


  • Bengi

    Although It is said that goji needs at least 2-3 years to give fruit from seed , someone managed to collect its fruits in 4,5 MONTHS! His secret is watering them with EM (effective microorganisms). I saw the pictures in the internet but since it is a turkish site it is difficult to understand for most of you. If language is not a problem, you can check this site !!


  • Keith

    You may have discussed this before, but how big to Goji Berry Bushes get? Reason is I’m planting a garden right now and want to plant them unless they take over everything.

  • Corey

    Mine have gotten huge. They are now 5 years old. I keep them pruned to about 6′ tall. Constant pruning is the only way to keep them under control. If happy they will grow faster than anything else in your garden.

    More than anything you need to know they spread like crazy. They multiply through the roots and send suckers out everywhere. My original goji plant is now 5-10 plants. I have heavy clay soil and they seem to have no problem punching through it. I even transplanted a 3 year old bush and in it original place I now have 15-20 new shoots. These are all coming from the roots that were left behind. Once established these things will take over unless kept under control. I have another 4 year old plant that I have allowed to take over and it is consuming a 20 foot area with all of its shoots. I even have shoots coming up in my grass.

    Happy goji growing.

  • Kenny Point

    My goji berry plants have grown tall (over eight feet) but have not spread like Corey’s. Maybe it’s the climate or soil, but they are showing no desire to send out suckers or runners and the only pruning that I’ve done has been mainly to remove dead growth or to reduce the height a bit. I will probably do some pruning in the future to encourage the goji berry to get a bit fuller.

  • Corey

    Update on the transplanting of two goji plants.

    Each plant was 4 year old and I transplanted them while they were still dormant. Just this weekend I decided to prune them to 6 inches from the ground. My reasoning is the leaves were small and a few had developed brown spots. The new shoots coming up seem 100% healthy and ready to develop into new bushes. I will update when the plants have some time to grow.

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  • Coo

    I live in San Jose, California. I have Goji plants that produce a lot of berries every year. They start to grow a lot of leaves in spring before they flower. However, a few weeks later, the leaves would have powdery mildew. This happens every year. The berries seems fine.

    Can someone tell me what causes the leaves to have the white powdery stuff? and how do I get rid of them?
    Please advise.
    Thank you very much.

  • Tara C


    After some hunting around i found a place that was shipping goji plants (i think they ship plants all year long) they also sell seeds. Nine Lucky Stars is the name of the place. I just ordered some organic goji berry plants from them, about a foot tall each and they look great! I can’t wait for them to start fruiting. http://www.nineluckystars.com is the site and
    these are the ones i ordered: http://nineluckystars.ecrater.com/p/8219992/1-organic-goji-berry-plant-lycium

  • Hi,
    I planted s few seeds in early June (Aberdeen, Scotland) and now have very tiny shoots all with two very tiny leaves. They are in small pots and kept in a glasshouse. My problem is what to do next.
    Can you advise please ??

  • My Goji plants are grown from seeds. They are kept in a greenhouse in Aberdeen, Scotland where the weather is unpredictable. I have very tiny shoots all with two very tiny leafs. Not having grown Goji plants before I am now stuck as how to treat them.
    Please could you advise me as to how to treat them from now on.
    Thanks and regards

  • Norman

    Hi Ray,

    I am also in Scotland and can tell you that gojis love the climate here (hmmm not sure about Aberdeen though!). Once they get started they grow well through the summer and they survived the last vicious winter – I did not lose a single bush and I now have over twenty.

    For everyone else, I (well really my wife) have found that if you cut the shoots off and strip off the leaves (which my wife uses for cooking) and then stuff the bare shoots in a tumbler of water which is left on the kitchen table, they grow 6 inch long shoots in two weeks and a healthy root system. Without fertiliser and direct light. Have even found that stuffing the shoots into the ground with no care at all, no watering or fertilising, is successful, but not as good as the tumbler of water just described.

    These things are tough.

  • Norman

    Ray, further to the comment above, I started with some dry-root gojis and pots v directly into the ground. It made no difference since they were all planted in summer. With the recent warm spell in Scotland it may be that your young shoots grown from seeds are too warm! Try some outside. Nothing where I am seems to attack the new leaves so they should be safe from predators but best to put a bit of netting, or similar, around them, just in case.

  • Ray

    Hi Norman, thanks so much for your advice. Great stuff really because I now have eight shoots so I will take four out of the glasshouse and l keep the remaining four in the glasshouse. Will be interesting to see the difference!
    Cheers again and thanks

  • Kelly

    I also recommend the go-goji website and http://www.fountainofyouth-gojiseed.com/OnlineCatalog.html for cultivated variety of seeds and plants. Unfortunately, after killing one from Timpanogos, I am now growing one from Richter’s which probably won’t have the same eating quality as from the above sites. However, I am enjoying my learning process! I am growing it in tree form (single trunk). Last year I removed all suckers and side shoots except a few at the top, maybe 6 feet tall. It had a nice weeping umbrella going by this spring, which appeared promising. Then one day I saw it had gotten decapitated! I was very sad, but a new vertical shoot emerged near the top, and just since spring it has now grown to at least 8 feet, with a new umbrella already forming (as I continue to prune the side shoots except at the top). I wonder how tall it would get if I kept pruning the side shoots all the way up? I am getting some blooms, tho, so I don’t want to prune them all off now.:) I have it planted on a fence b/n grapes and other stuff that tends to get a little crazy, so I figure leaf and fruit high up where there’s better circulation will serve the plant better in my humid Iowa clime. I wonder how thick the trunk will get over the years–how tree-like? I am not seeing a lot of crazy suckering on the ground–none this year, in fact (well, maybe one or two, not sure).

    I’m having a wee bit of trouble understanding Jason’s pruning directions at go-goji, about when and why to cut off the top vertical growing sprout.

  • pauline blackford

    I have 3 goji berry plants, and they have been in the soil for months. they have grown, but i haven’t had any flowers on any of them. how long before this happens please.

  • Betty

    I acquired a Goji berry plant recently, it’s in a 4″ pot and it’s in flower with a few green berries hanging down. I was a bit unsure about transferring the plant to outdoor ground cause this is approaching autumn but feel more confident after reading all the comments. As an insurance, I will try to convince my sister to grow one in her garden, that way, if one plant die, we will have a spare.
    BTW, I live in Kent, England, UK.

  • Ray

    Hi to Norman again!! Glad to tell you that I just got back from a 30 day holiday to find that two of my (then) tiny plants have grown to 12 and 14 inches. Very strange that one plant is leafy yet the other has had its leaves demolished by something. At the moment they are still in the glasshouse and I intend to keep them there over the winter period making sure that they are kept moist.
    Anyone out there who can advise me about the leaves been eaten away yet the other untouched ??
    Cheers Norman, will try your bare shoots in tumbler of water.

  • Norman

    Good to hear that Ray. The peculiar leaf predation is weird – unless my wife has been in the area. She strips the leaves and cooks them. The plants don’t mind and usually flower on branches that have been stripped. Yours are a bit young for that though. Still, watch out for the little purplish flowers, they can be hard to notice. I have around 20 fast growing plants from shoots that I cut off and just stuck in the open ground. I am trying to give them away before they take over. Once they get established they grow fast.

  • Hi there,
    I’m from Turkey. Living at south east shore of marmara sea. Our garden is at 300m height of sea level. I started goji growing first time last year from seeds. Young plants started to give fruits when they are just 4.5 months (from seed). They are 15 months old now. This summer they started to give fruits in June and still continuing. Approximately, I have 60 plants from last year and about 40 from this year’s cuttings. The new ones also started to give fruits.

    What I can say, I think I discovered some tricks about this plant. Off course, general climate and average temperature is important. This is also an olive region but not too hot. We got max 35 celcius degree while the average is about 25-30. Garden is completely open to north winds.

    Goji is making very deep roots. Therefore, it should be dug quite deep holes while they are transplanted. A good mix of organic matter and clay should be filled in the holes and the soil should be loose enough for easy root development. EM (effective microorganisms) is absolutely an accelerator. Plants need too much potasium because of very long harvesting period.

    A proper pruning is also very important. It should be selected the strongest one as the single body among shoots. Pruning should be done in early spring, just before end of dormant period. Only body and some main branches should remain and all others should be cut. Remember, plant is fruiting from new coming branches only.

  • Alex

    I just found out that there are some differences between Lycium Barbarum and Lycium Chinense. I saw the two “cousins” one next to each other, full of fruit and flower, inside a greenhouse. As far as I’ve read, the two of them don’t have nutritious differences and that they’re somewhat the same.

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  • wally

    I haven’t read anyone state what zone the goji plant can be grown in. I have read where they do grow in the Himalayas but very few… I read again that they can withstand -15 below zero… does anyone know ??

  • Dear Goji Friends,

    Lycium barbarum L. is higher in antioxidants than Lycium Chinese, and is the only Lycium used by TCM, and Modern Chinese Medicine. Lycium barbarum is indiginous to Ningxia China. Ningxias’ climate is very similar to the Northern Tier of the USA. Lycium barbarum L. will also withstand temps between -16 F., and 104 F. Good luck with your Goji growing. Happy New Year & Warmest Regards, Rich – GojiTrees.com

  • David m.

    Hello, i,ve just sprouted nearly two hundred goji seeds, I’ve noticed that some of the sprouts are dieing of, at the base of the sprout shriveled almost like someone pinched it; much thinner then the rest of the seedling. Any suggestions?, I’ve got them on a heat pad with a humidity dome over them. Could it be that there getting to much moisture? comments would be greatly appreciated. thank you

  • Pamela

    Hi David M.
    What we learned in our permaculture workshop about the pinching at the bottom of the plants is that, yes, they are getting too much moisture and also a fantastic preventative is to make a batch of Chamomile Tea spray the cooled tea onto the seedlings and the soil to prevent this rot. I’ve used it very successfully on my tomato seedlings after I lost the first batch to rot. I’m sure it will work just as well for the goji seeds.

  • David

    Yeah that’s what I figured, I believe my soil has too much choir, holding in a lot of moisture and not really draining properly. Do you know of any good soil for seedlings? Thanks for the Chamomile tea hint, I’ll be sure to keep that in mind. Thanks again.


  • Hey Goji Friends, Which “Cultivar” of Goji are you growing? Beware of the “Tibetan, or Himilayan Goji Seed FRAUD.” There is no such thing on the planet. Most “SEED PODS” , or “SEED Harvested from “SEED PODS”, are a scam. If seed from these “dry Goji berries” germinate at all, they will usually produce weak sprouts, and seedlings. They will not produce a “Da Ma Ye Gou Qi Zi Shi Shu.” “Pinching at the bottom of Goji stem, is usually caused by “damping off disease.” Treat seed with 9 pts water, and 1 pt bleach “before planting seed”. Treat (lightly sprinkle) ‘new emergening sprouts’ with common ‘ground cinnimon.’ This will kill most pathogens, and fungi, that attack the new Goji, seed, and seedling. Might try a 9 to 1 mixture of “Ivory detergent & weater.” for the “white powder on the leaves.” Remember “Every living thing loves to eat the Goji!” Get free “Heirloom Goji Seed” @ GojiTrees.com It is good to know what “cultivar” you are growing. Warmest Regards, Rich

  • Thank you very much, greetings form goji berry turkiye (http://www.goji-berry-turkiye.com/)

  • I would like to know if anyone has information on how much water Goji berrie plants need ?

  • Virginia

    I am from Alamogordo, NM and planted bare root Goji’s year before last. I thought I would loose them this year due to the extended cold snap of 10 below, that we had this winter. The plants are doing super, they survived the winter and are grwoing by leaps and bounds. I think I will have fruit this year and they are now forming a bush shape. Now that they are established they require very little watering and seem very content. I am very pleased with the growth of this plant and look forward to the fruit. The soil that they are growing in, is a sandy alkaline soil and it is very hot in this area most of the time. I tried this just to see if i could grow them and they are already about 3 feet tall.

  • Corey

    Once established goji’s are the toughest plant around. I have trans planted them, started new from hardwood cuttings, cut back, accidetal spray with round up, etc. They just grow back every time. Their roots run so deep and spread out they will find water. even when I have moved them new plants start from the left over roots still in the ground. This plant is by far the easiest plant to grow. I am in salt lake city, UT and the goji loves the conditions. After 5 years of growing them my only advice is to give them as much sun as possible, keep the roots from getting soggy, and prune them every year. They will reward you with hundreds of berries. At this point I have at least 15 plants all over 3 years old. Only two were started from seed. The rest from either splitting or hardwood cuttings.

  • aj

    I was wondering if you would be willing to sell some gogi seeds to me?

  • Daryl

    Hey guys,,, I planted goji plants I started from seed. They are almost 2 years old. When they actually produce fruit, how much do you think people will be willing to spend on a pound of fresh goji’s? I don’t have any fruit yet, they are not even 2 years old, but I’m in the hopes that they will live through our very, very, cold winters. I’m looking for opinions. If you saw someone selling fresh goji’s, how much would you spend on a pound of them?

  • Tom B

    David M: “I’ve noticed that some of the sprouts are dieing of, at the base of the sprout shriveled almost like someone pinched it”.
    I’ve had this happen with lots of vegetable seedlings started indoors. It appears to be a fungus or mold growing on the top of the soil. This is due to soil being too moist. Once the seeds have sprouted, stop watering from the top. Water from the bottom, and don’t let the soil get saturated. If you want to do more, I’m told there is something you can buy to put on the top of the soil to keep the top dryer, so the fungus won’t grow.

  • Tom B

    Growing goji from seeds. Not wanting to buy seeds, I bought a bag of dried goji berries from Whole Foods. Took 30 dried goji berries from the bag and soaked them for 24 hours, then potted them in soil. Took 3-4 weeks for them to sprout. They’re doing very well. I have more plants than I can use. Many of the plants are growing their 3rd-4th set of leaves. I’m sure this is not the best way to do this, and probably not the best germination rate, but my point is that even the lazy way works.

  • Does anyone know about planting goji near other plants? I thought I did a lot of research before planting -read at least a dozen sites. However, right after I planted my goji last fall, I then read something saying that goji was in the nightshade family. Many nightshades, such as tomatoes and potatoes, are not supposed to be planted near other plants, as the roots give off a poisonous alkaloid. Are gojis ok to be near other plants? I have them near some fruit trees -apply, cherry, etc.

  • alex aprahamian

    does anyone know why my goji berry leaves near the bottom and the middle of the plant yellowing and falling off the plants are about 3 or 4 feet high and i just transplanted them in new 7 gallon containers could it be because before i transplanted them in the new soil i got the soil nice and wet do they not like the wet soil and the soil i planted them in is foxfarm ocean forest

  • Corey

    Yeah they hate soggy soil. You need to make sure it is well drained and don’t over water. I have one plant in hard clay soil that is usually wet. It is big bu still has yellow and pale green leaves. All the others are in well drained soil and the leaves are deep green and much healthier.

  • Corey

    To Jackie, all of my gojis are growing by trees, annuals, and perennials. All of those plants are healthy as can be. The only problem I have ran into is the goji taking over in an area. Mine spread everywhere including my front lawn.

  • Rick

    Free seeds – buy a box of Goji Berry Tea, make a cup of tea, save the bags, open them up and sort out the seeds, these will grow, I have had some success getting them to germinate. You wont get a lot, but it is a sense of accomplishment to get one to grow from a used tea bag.

  • Greg

    I don’t suggest planting seeds that’s not the best way to go unless your an experienced gardener and plenty of time to wait. You can buy some nice sized plants or cutting off ebay that will grow faster and prouduce faster.

    Some very nice Goji Berry plants can be bought on ebay. They love being planted on hills or hillsides. Don’t plant them in low areas. A lot of rain in a low laying area can turn a Goji Berry plant yellow and kill it at a young age.

    I suggest you use fish emulshion as a fertilizer it seems to work the best. To me this plant almost has a personality you need to want them to grow them.

    When they are covered with thousands of tiny blooms the bees come by the hundreds all you hear is a hum in the air and swarms of honey bees all around it’s something to see.

    These plants get so green they don’t even look real they are a beautiful plant. I think the best way to deal with the berries is take them from the garden to the juicer and make a juice with them.

    Or you can put them in bags like blueberries and freeze them. A lot of people dry them.

    I love these plants they are different from other plants at least for me they are.

    You can eat the leaves they are very good in Asian food. You can find hundreds of reciepes online for the leaves and the berries. I have 10 Goji Berry plants and wouldn’t trade them for the world.

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  • Richard S.

    After reading much of the above personal info, there is some info that is not getting out there. Goji berry prefers a dryer climate and tolerates some shade, but prefers full sun. Living in Washington State, growers have better growth with the addition of lime/ limestone to the acid soil here. Also, flowering and fruiting seems to be an issue for some people – keep in mind that ANY plant needs a higher proportion of phosphorus and potassium in the soil to make this happen (as in rose or veggie type fertilizers). The important thing to understand is, growing Goji in Florida will require some shade; growing them in Pennsylvania or Alaska will require winter protection; grown in acid soil will require some lime; grown in a wetter climate will require well-drained soil – you have to adjust the growing conditions based on the climate and environment you are growing the plants in. And, as far as pollination for fruit – you just need bees…..the plants are self fertile. Keep the comments coming!

  • According to Dr. Paul Gross, to produce a Goji ‘berry’, the plant also needs a couple of months of ‘below’ freezing temps. Best Wishes Goji Growers.

  • Joni

    Hi – I started several Goji plants a few years ago. They seem very prolific, running all over the place, but mine are very untidy and not pretty plants! They just sprawl and run all over the bed. Some are “caged” but it doesn’t help a lot. What should I do? Let them continue on or should I attempt to impose more order on these monsters? 🙂 They also don’t produce many berries, but I think my soil might be too acidic for them; would adding some lime help fruit production?

  • Corey

    Have you tested your soil?
    My goji’s are all over the place as well. In my lawn, in the neighbors yard etc. That is why I think people make growing this berry too difficult. It is seriously the easiest plant to grow. I have them growing in acidic soil and alkaline soil. It does great everywhere. I always get more berries than I can keep up with. Refer to an earlier post of mine stating well drained soil. They need that more than anything else. Even though I have some goji’s growing in pure clay they are not the best producers of the bunch. If you want to grow them they are easy to start and easy to maintain. But they do require work just like any other berry plant. Buy a plant, prepare your soil, and get growing.

  • Alex

    Hello ! I found very useful information on this website and it really helps me on my quest of discovering Goji. The thing is recently I found some bushes around a village nearby that look like Goji. I haven’t got so much experience in recognizing Goji, so I need some opinions. Below you have some links to some photos I took when I found the plants.
    I would really appreciate some help. 🙂


    These are photos taken by me on june 15th.

    Thank you very much !

  • Belinda (NZ)

    I have one plant and am keen to see it grow well. This site is great for advice and tips. So far the goji doesn’t seem to do so well in New Zealand so I’m a bit nervous about how it’ll cope.
    I’m thinking of putting it in a pot. Do most people find this works ok?

  • Dianna

    I live in Kelowna, British Columbia Canada. I bought 2 goji plants from a Local Nursery last year..and wow this year they are so big, and I had my first goji berry!! I have tryed to take cutting for friends and have not been able to get them to root….what is the trick to cuttings? Thank you.

  • David

    I grow goji here in Winnipeg, Manitoba (zone 2 area). The original plant was started from cutting of my friend’s plant. It will grow root without using rooting hormone. The cutting started in the spring will bloom immediately and bear fruit. The cutting is considered as a matured branch, therefore as the leaves are coming out, the fruit buds will also form.

  • Dianna

    Thank David, my question is, did you just put the cutting into soil? How did it root? Is it an old cutting? A runner? Mind just die if I put the cuttings into water. Thank you again.

  • David

    I did it in two ways: (1) dip the cuttings (about 4-5 inches long) in water in a bottle (about 1/3 of the sticks immersed in water) and place the bottle near a window where it can expose to morning or evening sunshine. The cuttings will bud first and then send out the white root. I plant it in soil as soon as the white root about 1 mm is visible. (2) Simply put the cutting in potting soil and keep it wet by covering the surface with plastic film. As the cutting starts to grow, the flower buds will also form at the leaf stem because the cutting is a matured wood. The cuttings I started in the spring already have fruits on it.

  • David

    Any young branch which has flowers/fruits is suitable for cutting.

  • David

    The goji plant I got from my friend has a slender trunk (about 3/16 in diameter). I cut off the tip at 4′ height and it grew several branches. Each leaf stem has 2 to 3 fruit and the branch is dropping down from the weight of the fruit. I also started several plants from seeds taken from dried fruits last fall. These seedlings grew really fast, one of them already reached 7′ with a trunk bigger than the pencil. I use water soluble 20-20-20 twice a week. I don’t know when these seedlings will start to bear fruit.

  • David

    Alex, the plants you discovered are goji.

  • Dianna

    Thank you David, I am going to try from seed and I will work on taking a new branch…

  • David
  • Larry

    Started some from seed from local health food store dried berries-easy. Grandma came home from the local chinese grocery store with a bunch of stems purchases for 99 cents. Blanched the leaves in soup which was delicious. Stuck the stems in water, about half rooted in about 10 days-super easy.

  • Michael Hamner

    Fellow grower
    This post is regarding the discussion about some goji berry plants that spread/sucker and others that don`t. I have 2 different types of goji berry plants. I have a narrow leaf variety and a broad leaf variety. The broad leaf variety tends to sucker/spread alot and grow faster, whereas the narrow leaf variety grows at a slightly slower rate and doesn’t spread or propogate on it’s own.

  • Greg

    I have several Goji plants 6 years old and older they always seemed to grow fairly fast and stayed dark green this Spring their leaves started turning yellow and just fell off. One plant at a time! I guess they got blight or powdery mildew. I sprayed them with a Insect, Disease 3-in-1 spray a couple times. They started putting back a few leaves but they are very small leaves and stay that way. My plants don’t look anything like they did before this. They look horrible. I’m not very happy at this point.

  • Greg,
    Where is your location and what kind of soil do you have? Did it rain too much at your location? I speculate it might not be due to disease, try to dig soil around the plants (do not dig too deep to cut the roots) to allow more soil aeration. It is normal for goji plants grow small leaves in summer, my suggestion is to loosen soil and add some fertilizer and see how things going this fall.
    Have the plant started yielding berries yet?

  • Greg

    I live in Southern Illinois. Yes it rained a lot,– forever early this Spring. More than usual rain. Yes, my plants have had berries past years. Not this year though. Didn’t really put many blooms out either. In the past they were covered with blooms and berries. My yard used to be filled with the sound of bee’s. The soil couldn’t be any better very good soil.

    I’ll do what you said and loosen the soil around my plants. I use a fish and seaweed emulsion for fertilizer every 2 1/2 weeks. Thanks for the information and help.

  • loh

    I live in San Jose, California and all my goji leaves of my plants turn powdery after a month or 2. This has been happening the last few years but they continue to bear a lot of berries. I was concerned at first but read that this is due to some kind of mildew. Most of the white leaves have dropped but new ones coming out. The new leaves apparently have not shown any powdery stuff yet. San Jose has a mild weather and i don’t water my goji plants. They just suck whatever water they can find in the soil.
    At this point, i have decided not to worry since it is not affecting the berry production although the leaves look very ugly.

  • excessive rain would hurt goji roots development and eventually can kill the plant. Make sure your plants stay away from low point in field to avoid standing water or poor drainage.
    If the situation becomes worse you might need to rescue the plants by transplanting them to better locations. To do that trim the plants first to leave only main stem and branches, cut off roots that are already damaged and replant them to good well-drained soil. I rescue some of my plants this way it worked.
    The limiting factor for growing goji in Midwest and estern region is too much rain and high humidity. But it is manageable, I have pretty good harvest of my goji berries this year.
    Please visit my website go-goji.com for more goji growing tips.

  • Greg

    loh,— What you have sounds like powdery mildew. You can buy Sernade a 3 in 1 Disease and insect control. I had my Goji Berry plants over 6 years and they did fine that whole time. Never had any problems with them. They are in a well drained area. My plants are looking ugly too. They have always been dark green leaves covered with berries and blooms. My plants are spread out on my place it’s funny they all seem to have the same problem. I did do what Jason suggested and used a hoe around my plants. I had to cut them back some just hoe. And I fertilized them. Hoping this helps. I will check out the website go-goji.com

  • David

    Jason, you probably can tell me some thing: I started some goji in late April, some from the cutting of my old tree and some from seed taken from dried fruits I bought from the store; It was marked “Tibetan Goji Berry”. As you mentioned in you web site, this was a hoax. These seedling grew really fast, one of them is over 8 feet in one summer! Would you tell me what variety is it?

  • David

    I talked to the manger of the store where I bought the dried goji, he said the fruits were directly imported from Tibet, not NingXia Province.

  • Betty

    I did a google search in Chinese (I’m from Taiwan) on Tibet goji, and all points to NingXia. Not the only place, but the best quality and quantity, and is the choice for Chinese herbal medicine use. The only “Tibet goji” reference I found is “Tibet wild black goji”. The fruits are black. I did find one website selling “tibet goji extract”. The website is a mix of chinese and english.

  • David

    Goji thrive in zone 2 area here. I think birds and hornets help to spread the seeds. I can see the plants grow in neighbor’s yard and several houses down the road. In the past, I tried to sun-dry the fruits and found the job was too tedious. So I freeze it for use it in winter. I make goji berry muffin, goji-blue berry pie, goji jam (just add lemon juice and sugar, no pectin), etc. For those living in hi-rise apartment, the fruits are available at farmer’s market (650 gram for $15).

  • John

    Can people please comment on how the goji leaves might be raw? I’m actually not planning to eat the leaves, but to blend them with water and then filter out the fiber. I’m wondering if any toxins would stay in the fibers and not stay in the juice. Also how well does the goji work as a hedge?

  • David

    The reason to grow fruit trees from seeds is to develop new strains with desirable characteristics. One of my seedling has huge leaves. I hope the fruit will also be in that proportion.

  • David

    I would like to report that the seedling I started early in the year is blooming. Amazing, isn’t it? In less than a year, this plant shoots up to 8 feet. What I do is that I keep the seedlings well watered and fertilized. We have a very dry and hot summer here this year. My goal is to develop a good quality fruit, not as a fade “super food” or “elixir” that sort of garbage.

  • David

    John, goji plants produce an alkaloid, atropine. I don’t know the concentration. Eye doctors use 1% atropine to dilate the iris, one drop in the eye would keep the pupil dilated for several days. In the Army chemical warfare kits, atropine is used as a antidote for nerve gas. Goji should be a good hedge plant.

  • John

    David, thanks for your response. I’m mostly interested in the goji for the leaves and would grow it as a hedge, but am hesitant to get any nightshade plants, especially if it would be dangerous to eat on a regular basis.

  • Relax Goji Friends, Goji has been consumed “on a regular basis.”, as both food, and medicine, by the Chinese, for 1000’s of years, without ill-effect. “Blending” Goji with some “chemicals” can cause great harm.See: www GojiTrees.com

  • Ray

    Hi to all you Goji growers
    I think Iv’e gone wrong somewhere. I grew my Goji plant from a seed of a dried Goji fruit about two years ago. Once it sprouted I moved the tiny plant to a greenhouse. It is now only about four feet tall very leafy and looks quite healthy. It survived last winter which was quite severe, the leaves all fell off but grew again as spring and good weather began.
    After reading some comments where people have been successful, my Goji should be much larger and showing flowers but I have none of that at all. Can anyone out there give me some tips about feeding and pruning ? I live in Scotland, UK where the weather is unpredictable all year. More bad than good. This summer was like a very warm winter.
    So my fellow growers…….HELP !!
    Kind regards, Ray

  • Norman

    Hi again Ray-
    I am in warmer Ayrshire (Ha!) and recognise your symptoms. I now have around 25 goji bushes, all growing outside in the open and all very vigorous. They lose their leaves in the Winter but quickly recover in the Spring. They are very reluctant to flower and do so late in the year, about now in fact. I get a few berries by early winter. I wrote once on this site that stripping the leaves from some of the branches does encourage flowering on the bare branch. We also eat the leaves in these parts, which is how I noticed that happening. (My wife is going to try drying the leaves to make a tea leaf substitute – will write later about how that turns out).

    I would also be interested to hear how other fare in this sort of climate. We had a temperature range of -15 to +20 Centigrade this year (roughly 5 to 70 degrees F). Anybody else able to produce large crops of berries with these temperatures?

  • Ray

    Hi Norman
    Thanks for your swift reply – very much appreciated. Well I reckon we had about 8-10 good hot days this summer (wow!) and reached a comfortable 16 to 19 Centigrade. Not much of a summer after the terrible winter we had! At the moment I have just the one Goji and am growing it as a tree so it depends on the outcome whether I decide to carry on or not. I was told that if you grow from seed it could take up to three years before it produces berries and that I should take some cuttings off my tree and plant them about May to July so I will give that a go. Just one thing I’m not sure about is how and when to prune. Any ideas on that? Well cheers again and hope to hear from you sometime. Good idea from your wife about making tea from the leaves I will give that a go too. Bye for now……………Ray

  • Norman

    Ray, in the Far East they usually/often sell goji leaves on the branch. You buy a big bundle of twigs, take them home, strip off the leaves and throw the branches away – maybe keeping some of the soft end bits for the soup. That is how we prune here. Most of the cuttings I have planted came from bits left over and not thrown away. Some branches we just strip of leaves on the bush to force flowers. As I said, it seems to force more flowers doing it that way.

    I bought my original plants from Thompson and Morgan. It still took a couple of years before we saw our first flowers even though growth was vigorous. By the way, I use plastic interlocking plant tie to help train my plants. It is easy to tighten or loosen and to move about on the bush. Creepers get cut and the leaves stripped and added to soup!

    I will take some photos tomorrow, upload, and put a link on this site. Weather permitting. Just to show how they grow in this part of the world.

  • Norman

    I have taken some photos this morning of my goji bushes growing here in Scotland. They show plants of different age (2 – 5 years), some with flowers, and one of the eventual uses (which we consumed today)…


  • David

    Hi, Norman, nice to see the photos of your goji plants doing well in Scotland. I am located in central Canada. Our arctic winter temperature can dip to -35C, and summer is really dry, I often have to water the plants every evening. Neverthless, goji thrives here and spreads like weeds. The leaves of your goji plant look slightly different from mine. My plants look similar to the commercially grown variety in Ningxia Province, NQ-1. It’s very productive, the fruit is about 2cm long. The photo shown in the link below is a cutting I started in the spring, only one stem and already 5 feet tall. It bloomed as soon as it started to grow. There are 3 to 4 fruits on each leaf stem. I keep the plants well watered and fertilized. Once in a while, I use a garden forks to loose the soil and to aerate around the root area.

  • Interesting. I’ve heard of them, but haven’t been sure whether or not to believe all the hype.. are they delicious?

  • David

    Bob, please don’t believe all those hypes, just treat it as a fruit like apple and orange. Goji is sweet when it is fully ripe, but has too many seeds inside.

  • Oh.. thanks for the heads up! I guess people can tend to get carried away with these things.

  • David

    I harvested goji berry, filling up 2 ice cream pails (8 liters). I put the berry in the food processor, keep only the juice and use the seeds to grow sprout for salad (very much like alfafa sprout).

  • Sherman A. Clapper

    I planted my first batch of seeds goji seeds on the 6th of Oct.2011
    I am transplanting some of them already they have 5 to 7 leaves
    and are already 2.5″ tall (seven weeks old.) My second batch I planted on Nov.2011 They are already 1.0″ tall. I am growing them in a green house. Sherman

  • Virginia

    I live in southern New Mexico and started growing Goji Bushes three years ago. They have done very well and I got a few berries this year. I did have one die back but it came back from the root and is as big as the others. I am excited about the new addition to my garden. My only concern is that they have started to spread by the root and I hope they don’t go all over the property.

  • Paulette

    Thanks for all the comments. I’m from the Phoenix area and just got a couple of plants from Baker’s Nursery. Does anyone have experience with our severe summer heat? I don’t think we’ll have any trouble keeping the root from being soggy.

  • Efi Plexousaki

    Dear Virginia, where exactly is your garden located in New Mexico, regarding altimeter and environmental conditions? Is it true that goji berries need specific weather conditions and altitude to produce berries?
    My best regrards

  • MARK

    I live in South Africa.. Does any one know were i can buy a goji berry plant..

    Thanks Mark..

  • stathis

    Hello I have got one question…do goji berry plants need a male pollinator or they all produce fruits?

  • Alex

    They all produce fruits. It’s a single plant, which is both male and female. It will need bees or a lot of human intervention to pollinate the flowers. Best grown outdoors.

  • Ray Morgan

    Hi everybody !
    Is there somebody out there who lives or close to Aberdeen Scotland ? If so, I need some advice. I planted a Goji seed taken from a dried Goji about two years ago. At the moment it is in it’s third winter. Last winter was quite a bad one but it survived as the bare two foot twig started growing leaves again. No sign of flowers, in fact, no sign of anything apart that it grew a few inches the following summer which was a grim summer, not very sunny and highest heat was 32C.
    So, any tips from anyone in my area ? Thanks in advance from anyone who can tell me what I’m doing wrong or any advice at all !!
    Cheeres for now Ray.

  • Alex

    @Ray Morgan
    Last winter may have been too much for your goji plant. Don’t worry though, it will adapt in time.

    My location: Romania
    Summer average temperature: 25-35 degrees C
    Winter average temperature: -10, -25 degrees C

    I have been growing Goji plants outside for three years now. They adapted quite well. I had a FIG TREE that I thought it died completely last winter at -25 C, but then the next spring it started anew from the roots, I guess, because the above plant froze to death. I think it’s better if you just leave your plants to struggle to adapt, otherwise it’s not worth growing them outside. Except most exotic plants, which are not accustomed to harsh winters.

    Good luck !

  • Ray Morgan

    Thanks Alex will let you know when weather improves !

  • We moved from San Diego to Mina, Nevada and now to Stagecoach, Nevada which is an hour from Reno. I raised my goji berries from seeds. When we left Mina, I dug them without much tenderness, and brought them here. In Mina they got wind blown, endured nasty cold, lack of water while we moved and could not get back to them for awhile. I planted them here at this house and except for one, all the rest (9 Bushes) are leafed out and adapting. They are tough. So do grow them. I have planted them here in front of the house. The house serves as a wind break which is better for them I think. I am growing some for next year to add to the ones I have. My comfrey plants did not survive which surprised me. My beloved Moringa trees all bit the dust but I am starting new ones to be raised in our new house with windows galore. Moringa rrees cannot survive the cold up here outside. You can grow them as a seasonal plant though. You eat their leaves as tea and in salads. It is a tree with super nutritious leaves. You must really love it to go to the work to have them in the house though.

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  • bob

    I have a goji plant which has done very well for years ; it had ( last year) a tremendous crop until one day when overnight the fruit turned black & withered away. The plant was completely cut back in fall and regained all its branches etc in spring and everything looked ok , plant flowered and green fruit developed BUT now as the fruit start to ripen they go black on ends and wither away. Seems like a fungus but what to do . any suggestions??

  • jared

    this is my first year growing goji berries, and the one plant has berries already. im in zone 4 (south dakota), and the plants seem to be doing fine. im curious when to harvest. how big are the berries at harvest time? and what time of the fall is the best time to harvest?

  • You can harvest the berries when they turn to bright red. Don’t harvest too early because the berries grow fast in size and weight during the last 1-2 days of their maturity. Use thumb and index figer to gentally touch the berries, if they show a little softness, that’s the time for harvest. Goji flower and yield berries throughout season so as long as weather permits it will continue flower and yield berries. Give some water when the berries start to red because berries need water to fast grow at that time, this stage is equivalent to flowering stage for corn and most other crops – water significantly determines the yield.
    For anyone read this post if you ever visited my website go-goji.com, please accept my apology since my website was removed since June due to web server upgrade, I have changed a server but have not yet fully rebuilt my website. I will add more new stuff, especially the goji climatic classification map which can serve guidance for goji growers in America. I produced that map using composite climatic information and GIS models. I hope I can update my website as soon as possible.

  • Bob,
    Fungi disease is the most common problem for growing goji berries. The best practice is to grow it in dry and sunny climate. However if you grow in humid climate, you can use some commerical fungicide to control, or make some organic natual fungicide as I do. I use garlic juice mixed with sufer power, it seems working. I didn’t use this year due to dry and hot season.

  • David

    Goji grows here in Winnipeg (zone 2). In early April, I pruned one of my tree and used the small branches as cuttings to produce three dozens of plants. All sold within a week.

  • Pepe’s Fruit Trees


    Neem oil for insects and fungus. Check out the video for more details if you like. Take care.

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