Fertilizing Blueberries

Asked June 21, 2016, 12:12 PM EDT

Hello, Could you please tell me the typical fertilizer used for blueberries and the quantities used/acre. Also I'm hoping to find information on fertilizer cost/acre for a typical blueberry operation. Thank yoU!

Boulder County Colorado blueberry production soil and fertility issues

1 Response

In Michigan we typically recommend 70 pounds of actual nitrogen per acre on a mature blueberry field. We only recommend ammonium nitrogen since blueberries do not use the nitrate form. The fertilizer recommendation is also based on the soil pH. Blueberries do best at a soil pH of just below 5, We recommend ammonium sulfate (21-0-0) if the soil pH is above 5 and urea (46-0-0) a cheaper fertilizer if the soil pH is below 5.
We recommend tissue testing in mid to late July rather than soil testing for other nutrients. If the planting needs phosphorus re recommend one of the ammonium phosphate fertilizers (usually 100 to 200 lbs./acre) and correct for the nitrogen content. If the soil is light and sandy so that potassium is needed, the optimum materials would be potassium sulfate or Sul-Po-Mag (magnesium potassium sulfate. Both are expensive and can be hard to find and growers will use potassium chloride. We recommend application of 0-0-60 in the fall so the winter rains and snow can flush the chloride out of the soil since blueberries are sensitive to chloride. We never recommend calcium or liming a blueberry field. If Magnesium is needed we recommend Sul-Po-Mag or Epsom salts.