Correct soil for Calluna

worthwhile1(z5 OH)May 3, 2005

I have heavy clay soil where I live. Since a raised bed is not an option for my situation, I removed all soil in a large bed area to a depth of 14 inches and replaced it with a mixture of one third topsoil, one third leaf compost and one third pine "fines" ( very small pine bark pieces). I would greatly appreciate input from anyone who has used this method and had success growing Calluna vulgaris. I am told this is the mixture to grow acid loving plants here in Ohio, but I would like to hear from a veteran gardener in my situation.

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I also would like to hear about the correct soil for planting heaths/heathers.
My "soil" is mostly clay. Could I mix some orchid mix with MG soils? I need to have some drainage! Anne

    Bookmark   May 5, 2005 at 8:18PM
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Obviously too specific a question for most of us. You might ask the same of the folks at Rock Spray Nursery (Cape Cod). It's their busy season, but they might be able to give you an answer.

I too have clay soil, which I amended with lots of peat, mixing it with the clay, to a depth of about 10-12". Good drainage is most important but so is a moisture-retentive soil, which you now no doubt have. If these conditions are met, along with full sun, I suspect your Calluna will thrive.

You're in zone 5 in the Midwest (harsh, drying winter winds), so be sure to protect them come next winter. Plenty of info about that in this forum.

Here is a link that might be useful: Rock Spray

    Bookmark   May 14, 2005 at 7:29PM
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Whoops. I didn't mix with peat. I mixed with compost and some leaf mold. (Peat and clay can congeal, negatively effecting drainage.) Worked great.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2005 at 7:32PM
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