Acidifying soil for blueberries

Asked June 12, 2019, 9:44 AM EDT

Is it advisable to lower the soil pH using vinegar solution in preparation for planting blueberries ? My clay soil is around pH 8 before amendments. I plan to work in equal amounts of peat moss and potting mix in a 2 foot circle for each plant, plus a couple handfuls of green kelp powder from Maine, and a sprinkle of Epsom salts if you recommend it. The plants will be in the vicinity of cherry, pear & peach trees. I usually mulch with cedar wood chip bedding. I also have available some straw bales and leaves that have been outdoors all winter, If either of those would be suitable to work into the soil. Thanks. Bob Braco

Washtenaw County Michigan

1 Response

No I do not think vinegar will do the job for you.The soil organisms will eat it. I sometime recommend it for potted plants but I doubt you would detect a difference.
If you are in a hurry you will need to use iron sulfate. Here is a link to an article.
I see the link in the article is bad so here is the link to the resource.

You need to calculate the square footage of the area you have and then determine what percentage of of an acre divide your number by 43,560 sq ft and then you can calculate how much ferrous sulfate you need. You can probably get is a a full service garden store. mixing peat with your soil is a good idea and the cedar mulch will be very helpful. Lastly you might want to add some sulfur every year to keep the pH low. your irrigation water may be alkaline and raise the soil pH. It is pretty hard to change the pH of clay soils especially if you are starting at 8.
Let me know if you have other questions.