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Changing the pH of soil for one plant (blueberry)!?

 
Poppy McGee
Posts: 3
Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands
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Hello everyone!

I've got what must seem like a very obvious question, but can't seem to figure it out myself (not even with Google's help!)

So I've got a blueberry plant and I'd like to plant it in the garden. My soil is pH7 (neutral) in the spot where I want to plant it. I know that blueberries need acidic soil. How do I go about making the soil in that one spot where the blueberry plant be planted, more acidic?

I've got some powered sulfur which I heard can help make soil more acidic. But the thing is, what do I actually do with it, and how much?! Do I dig a hole and sprinkle in some sulfur? Would that be enough, and would it then affect the surrounding plants? Would I need to add anything else later on, or just leave it as is?

Thanks in advance!!
Pru
 
Joseph Lofthouse
garden master
Posts: 2008
Location: Cache Valley, zone 4b, Irrigated, 9" rain in badlands.
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Seems to me that the most reliable way is to plant the blueberry in a pot.
 
Jd Gonzalez
Posts: 207
Location: Virginia,USA zone 6
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I just planted them and keep them mulched with peat moss & add coffee grounds when I have it.


BLUEBERRIES
These do best in a cool, moist climate that does not have hot, dry winds. The soil should be moist, light textured and contain a high proportion of organic matter. The optimum acidity level is from pH 4.0 to 4.5. It is beneficial to mix soil with liberal amounts of peat moss and Ferrous Sulfate. Plant in spring or fall, using 2 varieties or more for good pollination. Each year 3-4" of sawdust or peat mulch should be applied. Blueberries have shallow root systems, so a shallow cultivation is required. Prune annually AFTER the 4th year, cutting back damaged wood to healthy strong growth.

https://www.directgardening.com/content/16-gardener-s-handbook
 
Zach Muller
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Location: NE Oklahoma zone 7a
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Check out what tel jetson says in this thread, I agree. I mulched my blue berries with pine needles just because I had free access but they produced fine last season as an understory plant to and oak and pecan tree, with no attention to ph.

conifers ph and fruit bushes
 
Zach Muller
gardener
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Location: NE Oklahoma zone 7a
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The downside of pots and containers are they require watering and attention. Personally I would rather put something in the ground where it can mingle and do its thing without my immediate attention. Nothing wrong with pots, that is just why I avoid them for anything that can overwinter outdoors. I ignore my plants as it is and they thrive because of my swales and water management, whereas I ignore my potted plants and they dry up and die in no time.
 
Hester Winterbourne
Posts: 119
Location: West Midlands UK (zone 8b)
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I don't think you can grow something that doesn't want to be where you are, sustainably. Certainly I would balk at adding peat moss to the open ground - it is such a precious commodity and ethically questionable, at least in this country. Adding sulphur is not my idea of permaculture either. Pine needles sounds about the best alternative. But I would prefer to work with nature, grow what wants to grow and do without! On the other hand, I do have a source of wild bilberries ten minutes drive away, so am spoilt in that regard!
 
Bradley Springer
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Anyone try planting with peat moss then maintaining Ph with the irrigation water by adding vinegar to it?
 
Ci Shepard
Posts: 16
Location: Vancouver Island, BC
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I decided to plant my one dwarf blueberry bush in a 5gal. peat pot that one of my fruit trees came in, and this buried in the ground. I put ammended soil in the pot. I figure that it will take a few years for the pot to break down, in the meantime it will stay as moist as the rest of the bed and possible the blueberry will never out grow it. I'll add pine needles, coffee grounds and windfall apples to the area around it, so that even if the rootball expands into the bed, it will be more acidic by then.
 
Jd Gonzalez
Posts: 207
Location: Virginia,USA zone 6
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Hester Winterbourne wrote:I don't think you can grow something that doesn't want to be where you are, sustainably. Certainly I would balk at adding peat moss to the open ground - it is such a precious commodity and ethically questionable, at least in this country.



Here is differing view on Peatmoss, at least in the US.

The U.S. gets up to 80% of sphagnum peat moss it uses from Canada. In Canada, it has been estimated that new peat bog mass accumulates 60 times faster than the amount harvested each year. Approximately .02 percent of the 270 million acres of Canadian peat bog are used for peat moss mining.

http://www.theecologist.org/blogs_and_comments/commentators/other_comments/1780209/the_truth_about_peat_moss.html

If in fact, peat accumultaes a larger rate than the yearly harvest, I would dare to say it is a renewable source.

Besides peat, pine needles, coffee grounds and sawdust may be used for acidifying the soil.
 
Hester Winterbourne
Posts: 119
Location: West Midlands UK (zone 8b)
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Jd Gonzalez wrote:
Hester Winterbourne wrote:I don't think you can grow something that doesn't want to be where you are, sustainably. Certainly I would balk at adding peat moss to the open ground - it is such a precious commodity and ethically questionable, at least in this country.



Here is differing view on Peatmoss, at least in the US.

The U.S. gets up to 80% of sphagnum peat moss it uses from Canada. In Canada, it has been estimated that new peat bog mass accumulates 60 times faster than the amount harvested each year. Approximately .02 percent of the 270 million acres of Canadian peat bog are used for peat moss mining.

http://www.theecologist.org/blogs_and_comments/commentators/other_comments/1780209/the_truth_about_peat_moss.html

If in fact, peat accumultaes a larger rate than the yearly harvest, I would dare to say it is a renewable source.

Besides peat, pine needles, coffee grounds and sawdust may be used for acidifying the soil.


That's nice to know, and why I qualified with "in this country", meaning the UK. Whooeee 270 million acres! It's RARE here, especially in the lowlands, and vulnerable in the uplands. Going to visit a National Nature Reserve on a lowland bog tomorrow, it is a Schwingmoor with 2m peat floating over 13m of water and home to many rare sorts of wildlife.
 
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