Last Updated on May 5, 2022 by Cristina
It is necessary to maintain an ideal pH for the blueberry soil so the plant can flourish. Blueberry soil pH can range from 4.2 to 5.5 so this implies that they need acidic soil to thrive and yield fruits.
The pH of the soil is one of the most important things to put in place when planting blueberries. For you to properly plan your blueberry planting, you need to know the status of your soil and do the appropriate amendments necessary for your plant to flourish.
The information we will be provided in this article will outline more about blueberry soil requirements.
Blueberry Soil PH: The Ideal PH Requirement
So, the correct pH level you should provide for the soil for growing your blueberry is between 4.2 to 5.5 and this shows that acidic soil is the best pH for the plant.
This pH range for blueberry is pretty unique given the fact that most vegetables and fruit plants thrive well in a soil pH range between 6.5 to 7.5.
But when it comes to blueberry plants, if you want to follow the usual pH range for most fruits and vegetables (which is around 6.5 to 7.5), the plant’s growth can slow down, show yellowish leaves, and even produce only a few fruits or no fruit at all. This is why you need to test your soil and lower the pH when necessary.
To reduce the pH of your soil, you can simply amend it by adding sulfur to the soil. This sulfur can be in form of elemental sulfur, sphagnum peat moss, or you can simply use a widely available sulfur amendment gotten from your local garden stores.
How You Can Test The Soil To Determine Soil PH
When you plan to grow blueberry, it is very important to determine the status of your soil pH. Once you’re able to determine the soil pH, you can know the right amendments to do. The appropriate pH status required to grow blueberry ranges from 4.2 to 5.5
You can determine the soil pH by simply obtaining some soil samples in the area of the plant site you will be planting your blueberries and submit this sample to a lab.
Now, once you’ve identified the status of your soil, you can now decide on the appropriate soil amendments for your soil. If the soil is high in pH, this means you should amend the soil by lowering the pH and if the soil level pH is low, you can leave it but make sure the level is between 4 to 5 pH levels.
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Way Of Amending Soil PH To Suit Blueberry
So, below are some great ways you can amend the soil pH:
1. Sulfur – Blueberry Soil PH
Sulfur should be applied to the planting site. But if you would be making use of sulfur to amend your soil to plant blueberry, it is recommended to amend your soil pH the fall before you plant. It is suggested you do this because it can take several months for the pH to be amended after sulfur application.
2. Sphagnum Peat Moss – Blueberry Soil PH
Sphagnum peat moss is also great to be used to amend the soil. This is particularly if your soil has not been amended yet and you wish to plant your blueberries this spring. So, the addition of an acidic growing medium such as sphagnum peat moss can be added to the planting site to help amend the soil.
This method will even be more ideal if the originally the soil pH is around 5.5 to 7.0. So, just add about 4 to 6 inches of sphagnum peat moss to the upper layer of about 6 to 8 inches of the soil.
We recommend you go further by amending the whole planting site for your blueberries. This is because the roots of blueberries are inclined to expand and outwards. Hence, it is better to amend a soil area of about 2 to 3 feet wide just to ensure the roots of the blueberries plant have access to acidic soil.
3. Fertilize With An Acidic Fertilizer – Blueberry Soil PH
Blueberry soil pH planting site can as well be amended using acidic fertilizer. Some of these acidic fertilizers include ammonium sulfate, ammonium nitrate, or sulfur-coated urea.
Guidelines For Planning Out A Blueberry Planting Site
Let’s further look into some guidelines to put you through planning out a blueberry planting site:
- You should begin soil amendments by planning ahead because the soil can need several months to adjust once it has been amended. If possible, you can amend the soil in the fall before you plant
- At your planting site, you need to plant blueberries 5 feet apart. It may seem like this distance looks far, but the plant is capable of growing out and filling the space. Just make sure you don’t plant too close because it can create competition amongst the plants and it can even increase the chances of insect and disease damage.
- Make sure the blueberry variety you’re purchasing is from a reliable or reputable store.
- Preferably, don’t plant against a wall because the wall may generate extra heat that can cause damage to the leaves of the plant.
- You can expect 6 to 8 pounds of fruits each year for each plant and begin 3 to 4 years after planting.
Final Note On Blueberry Soil PH
Blueberry soil pH needs to be in the right range which is around 4.2 to 5.5 because this pH range will ensure blueberry plant thrives well and produce.
Soil testing should be the first factor to consider when planning your garden site for your blueberry and once you’ve determined the pH level, just amend the soil accordingly to suit blueberry growth.
How do I make my soil acidic for blueberries?
You can make your soil acidic for blueberries planting by simply adding sulfur to your soil, amending it with sphagnum peat moss, or fertilize the soil using acidic fertilizer.
Should you put lime on blueberry bushes?
The addition of lime to soil usually neutralizes the soil pH to a pH range of around 6.0 to 7.0. However, blueberry needs an acidic soil of lower pH (which is between 4.2 to 5.5) to flourish. So, lime may not be so great in helping blueberry plant amend their soil to the right pH range.
Can I put coffee grounds on my blueberry plants?
You may decide to put coffee grounds on your blueberry plants because they are highly acidic. However, if your soil is already high in nitrogen and you apply coffee ground, it may stunt the growth of flowers and fruit production.
How do you add sulfur to blueberries?
Sulfur helps amend blueberry soil by lowering their pH, so if you want to reduce the pH range of sandy soil, you need to add ¾ pound of sulfur per 100 square feet of the garden planting site.