Yellow/red leaves

Asked May 6, 2013, 10:18 AM EDT

Do I need to spray our blueberry bushes as some that bloomed and have berries now have some yellow and red leaves and some of the plant looks like berries are drying up and no leaves on branch?

Bradley County Tennessee blueberries blueberry production blueberry diseases blueberry soils

1 Response

Several things come to mind from your description. Yellow leaves are common if the soil pH is to high. Blueberries prefer a soil pH of 4.5 to 5.5. Look at the link below and see if the yellowing looks similar to what you have.
http://msue.anr.msu.edu/news/soil_test_before_you_plant_blueberries
Red leaves may be a symptom of not enough nitrogen. Blueberries only use the ammonium form of nitrogen so urea and ammonium sulfate are common fertilizers used in blueberries. For homeowners I recommend commercial azalea or rhododendron blends available in garden stores.
The dieback of branches in the early spring could be due to disease or lack of water because the plants have a restricted root system. I recommend you cut out the dead and dying shoots and force the plant to send up new shoots. Did you breakup the root ball when you planted the plants? How old are they? See the attached article.
http://msue.anr.msu.edu/news/how_to_avoid_a_common_blueberry_planting_error