blueberries coming in 3 days - help!!

acchance(6)October 5, 2012

Hello - I know I can find some good advice here....I feel incredibly lucky that I am being 'gifted' four large highbush blueberry plants from a house/lot that is scheduled for a teardown.

I only found out two days ago and the bushes need to be dug and delivered three days from now due to impending teardown. I have the perfect place for them - south facing, gentle slope at the base of a four ft high retaining rock wall - about 24 ft long. I spent 2 days tearing out crap foundation shrubs that were put in by previous owners and that I've been wanting to get rid of for 7 yrs. Burning bush has a ridiculous root system! And I found a buried gun...but that's another story.

Anyhow, now I need to fill the bed - I dug out much of the junk 'fill' that had been used from when the wall was built. What's a good, affordable way to fill and plant? Will they be ok if I use composted leaf mulch (I have a LOT of it) plus a few bags of peat moss? Should I be adding pelleted sulfur as we're going into winter, or just wait for spring and then ph test the soil. I do plan to cover with a good healthy layer of mulch - should be easy enough to rake some pine needles. Any other advice?

Thanks in advance!

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Bradybb(wa8)

Hello acchance,
Your method sounds okay and if some Pine bark mulch can be found,add about as much or more as the peat.Sulfur can be put in now too.It may be a good idea to pre moisten the peat. Brady

    Bookmark   October 5, 2012 at 11:57PM
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bamboo_rabbit(9A Inverness FL)

Acchance,

Keep the bushes as far away from that wall as you possibly can. The cement is going to make the area near the wall quite alkaline. As Brady said pine fines and peat and make sure peat is wet. You are going to need to cut the bushes back......I would go back 1/3 but it all depends on how the roots look and how the bushes were dug.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2012 at 8:32AM
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ericwi

If you have naturally alkaline soil, it would be a good idea to put about one pound of agricultural sulfur into the bottom of each hole, before planting the blueberry shrub. I prefer to mix either peat moss or composted tree leaves with our native soil, about 50/50 by volume, when planting blueberries. They should be watered in well, and watered once or twice a week through the fall. If your well water is alkaline, you will have pH issues, and the shrubs will likely fail to thrive. You might see pale green or yellow leaves next spring. If that happens, it is time to learn more about pH, how to measure soil pH, and how to measure water pH. There is help to be found on this forum.

    Bookmark   October 6, 2012 at 1:05PM
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