Blueberry Bushes
Q.

Can you correct a large amount of calcium in a field plot with sulfur too control the pH for blueberries?

Zone Somerset, Ky | robbie belwood added on April 26, 2019 | Answered

We just got the results back from our extension service and the report states that our %Ca is 73% (way over 2500 pounds) and the pH is around 7. It recommends picking another site, but that's going to be a problem since we are limited on site locations. Question: Can we add enough sulfur to bring the pH down or are we getting ready to kill 1049 blueberry plants? Any response would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Robbie Belwood

A.
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BushDoctor
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on April 27, 2019

Yep. You are getting ready to kill a whole lot of plants. Sulfur will not remove the calcium. It might bind it back up in salt form, but once the environment provides itself, it will be right back to it.

Unfortunately, you are going to need to chelate that whole field and then amend it back with something that blueberries can handle.

Citric acid is the most common chelator. It is going to break up those nutrients and flush them out of the soil with a few rains.

You may need to treat the field several times, and let it wash out before you can plant.

There is a chance that they will survive and do poorly for the first few years, but many will likely die.

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