EGO45....hydrangea question

javaandjazz(z6 CT)August 13, 2010

HI George,

I hope your summer is going well. A few years ago my nikko blue hydrangea turned nikko pink on me so I bought an espoma product aluminum something to acidify the soil around the hydrangea. I finally got a deeper purple this year after dumping about half of the bag around the shrub last year. Before that I was maybe only sprinkling 2 cups around it. How much do I have to put down and what product(s) do you recommend. I guess my soil isn't acidic enough. Thanks, Richie

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
tree_oracle(z6b MA)

Hope you don't mind me throwing my two cents in. You are putting down WAY, WAY too much aluminum sulfate. Aluminum can be toxic to plants if the concentration gets too high. It sounds like there are other factors in play that is keeping the plants from absorbing the aluminum. I would check the pH of your soil. If you need to acidify, then put down a light covering of sulfur around each plant in work it in a little bit. This will drop the pH of your soil rather quickly (just a few days to a couple of weeks).

You can have your soiled analyzed at UMass-Amherst for a very small fee. You just ship them a small bag of your soil and you will get the results in just a couple of weeks. You may find that your soil is deficient in some minerals or elements that you were not even thinking about that may be causing this problem.

    Bookmark   August 16, 2010 at 2:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
arbo_retum(z5 ,WinchstrMA)

excellent advice.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 3:52PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

An old trick that my girlfriends grandmother sticks to, she just pushes old, rusty nails into the soil around the hydrangea. And hers are the famous deep-blue.

What I figure is the nails are more of a long-term solution? Like perhaps the additives wash away too quickly, where the nails keep adding for a long time.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 5:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I heard two cups per plant of epsom salts should do it.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 8:26PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The trick with rusty iron (nails, old shovel heads, etc) is that it deepens the color a little, but it doesn't change the pink-blue balance the way changing the soil's acidity does. At least, that's what the old timer gardeners on Cape Cod tell me. (Oh wait, all of a sudden I'M an old timer!)

The theory is that some washed-out looking hydrangeas may be happy with the soil's ph but that an iron deficiency keeps them from developing their deepest colors. No idea if it's true, but if you peek under most of my hydrangeas you'll see an assortment of iron junk. No need to push it into the soil, by the way, iron oxide can travel down all by itself and it may rust more quickly if exposed to air.

    Bookmark   August 17, 2010 at 9:04PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Annie_NH Annual Plant Swap June 7, 2015
Hello, this is Annie's daughter Becky. We will be having...
Birds and other mobile features in the garden 2015 #4
This thread is intended to give people a place to post...
claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
2015 Camellia Show at Tower Hill Botanic Garden This weekend,...
claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
How do I add a zone to my user name?
I've been trying to edit my profile in "Your Houzz"...
claireplymouth z6b coastal MA
Clematis favorites for Jane
A few weeks ago Jane asked about Clematis on one of...
Sponsored Products
Lime Green Ego Bar Stool - Chrome Base
Zuri Furniture
'Minnesota' Box Sign
$7.49 | zulily
Set of 6 Gray Block Print Lamp Shade 5x5x4.5 (Clip-On)
Lamps Plus
Lenza 3-Light Chrome Bathbar
Safavieh Indoor/Outdoor Area Rug: Safavieh Rugs Shag Dark Grey 5.3 ft. x 7.5
Home Depot
Safavieh Area Rug: Shag Mushroom 5.3' x 7.5'
Home Depot
Tranquility Floral Arrangement
$349.00 | FRONTGATE
Progress 6" Sloped IC Remodel Housing
$83.62 | Lamps Plus
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™