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pH Paranoia

Posted by rocca Red Sox Nation (My Page) on
Sat, May 20, 06 at 20:57

I know I'm nuts but here goes. I grow citrus trees and anything else that looks cool and doesn't belong here in Boston. I have learned that citrus especially lemons are quite particular about their pH levels SO....I bought a sophisticated pH meter and I have been enjoying learning about pH. Well my question is how fussy are hibiscus, or other plants like jasmin and oleander, about their pH? I just repotted ALL my plants and brought them outdoors for the summer so I figured hey why not test this potting soil that I am using for the first time, Miracle-Gro with slow release fertilizer in it. Well it seems to have a rather alarmingly (to me) low pH (around 4.8 to 5.0) Is this too acidic for these plants? AM I being paranoid? The citrus trees are potted in coconut husk chips which is a perfect 7.0 Thanks for your help.

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RE: pH Paranoia

  • Posted by john_ny z6/7 Sunset 34 (My Page) on
    Mon, May 29, 06 at 19:34

While I don't, currently, have any citrus, I have had many in the past. Although I was a chemistry major in school, I have never really had much concern about the pH (maybe I should) My citrus have grown good in the mix that I use for just about everything. This is a third each of peat, perlite, and compost, plus time release fertilizer, (like Osmocote, or Polyon) wetting agent, (like Aqua Gro) and water retention crystals. (like Soil-Moist) This whole thing is mixed with recycled old mix, half and half. If I suspect a problem, (like chlorotic looking leaves I'll do a test. Currently, I have banana, pineapple, guava, passion, pomegranite and carambola.

RE: pH Paranoia

"pH (around 4.8 to 5.0) Is this too acidic for these plants?"

Sounds pretty darn low, in general.

google around with multiple terms like "plants minerals acidity pH", lots of general info.

then add in "myplant acidity pH" for specific info.

where myplant is your type of plant.

RE: pH Paranoia

  • Posted by socal23 USDA10/Sunset23 (My Page) on
    Thu, Jun 15, 06 at 1:04

Citrus like fairly neutral to mildly acid conditions, they tend to develop iron chlorosis if the soil pH is too high; Oleander is more tolerant, but prefer a relatively high pH (I assume you are referring to Nerium and not Thevetia, I know little about optimal conditions for the latter).


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