Yet another blueberry question!

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violet61

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Yet another blueberry question!
« on: June 04, 2009, 11:42 »
I ve planted 2 blueberry bushes in spring, in pots, with right soil, unfortunately not much rain water, water with tap, the first one, "bluecrop", pathetic looking, few leaves, hand ful of flowers, now looking like going to berries, second one, big, bushy "Goldtraube" no flowers whatsoever?? I thought this was an early one also? Is it me & blueberries? had a pot one few years back, was always pathetic, never more than a handful of fruit, last year, died!! please tell me these are not going the same way ??? :(

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barney rubble

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Re: Yet another blueberry question!
« Reply #1 on: June 04, 2009, 12:02 »
It might be your tap water thats doing it Violet. If the second one hasn't flowered its not going to now. If you can kep them both on rainwater it will help for next year

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violet61

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Re: Yet another blueberry question!
« Reply #2 on: June 04, 2009, 13:58 »
Thanks for reply. At present I dont have any rainwater, does anyone know if I could add vinegar to tap water & use that?

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Trillium

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Re: Yet another blueberry question!
« Reply #3 on: June 04, 2009, 14:35 »
That's what I'll be doing this year violet as I'm very short of rainwater and my well water is quite alkaline. And blueberries like evenly moist soil so water them often as pots are notorious for drying out quickly.

With your blueberries in pots, you'll need to feed them more often than I will (mine are in the ground) as they can quickly deplete pot soil. A twice yearly topping with pelleted chicken manure should do the trick to both perk them up and get those berries going. Do it now, then mid summer. Next year, give an early spring feeding then an early summer feeding. Don't feed after early summer or you'll get sappy growth and little fruit. And if you can find any discarded evergreen needles (leaves) such as pine or spruce, mulch the pots with them as they're a good acidifier.

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SG6

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Re: Yet another blueberry question!
« Reply #4 on: June 04, 2009, 18:54 »
I don't think that vinegar is what they mean by acid loving plants.
There is an ericacecous fertiliser that may be helpful.
Also I understand that sawdust will increase the soil acidity - only mentioned in case you can get some. Not sure how long it takes to have an effect.

Cannot think of anything to convert tap water to something suitable for a blueberry. Ask at a garden centre or at a water garden centre as they may use something that is used to keep pond water at a lower ph.

For aquarium fish you used to put a peat block in the water filter and this kept the water acidic. Wonder if you put similar into a bucket of water for a few hours if it would have the same effect. Also suspect that the peat could be used several times so not just the once. If it is an option and you are not on a meter then fill a water butt and drop the peat block in.

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violet61

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Re: Yet another blueberry question!
« Reply #5 on: June 04, 2009, 20:30 »
Thanks Trillium & SG6, I think I'll continue with vinegar adding, when I run out of rainwater, but also look into some sort of food for acid plants. Unfortunately a waterbutt is not an option due to lack of space, but I try & collect what I can in buckets. I've got chicken poop "cooking" for next year & there are pine trees nearby, oh & I drink plenty of fresh coffee!  So between everything I'm sure I can sort something out! Also I live in an acid soil area, Rhododendrons are like weeds! so I'm not quite sure why I've got blueberries in pots! :wacko:

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sloworm

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Re: Yet another blueberry question!
« Reply #6 on: June 04, 2009, 20:41 »
I have a couple of blueberries in pots too and have been told that coffee grounds around the base will help, mine have been planted in ericaceous compost and i do try to water them with rain water but am running out now so trying a rain dance later!!

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Trillium

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Re: Yet another blueberry question!
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2009, 23:57 »
SG6, I wasn't suggesting that vinegar in water means acid loving plants. I meant that violet's tap water might be too alkaline and this is a quick fix for that part. I assumed that she already had eracious soil in her pots, but even that can turn alkaline over time with tap water. She has to keep adding acidic things to her potted soil to keep it that way. Adding some plain old sulphur powder to the soil will help as well. 



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