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Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

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Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

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Friday - May 11, 2007

From: Lacey, WA
Region: Northwest
Topic: Soils, Shrubs
Title: Acidity of soil for blueberry plants
Answered by: Nan Hampton and Joe Marcus

QUESTION:

We have 8 blueberry plants and we have just taken out several Juniper shrubs. How will this effect the acidity of the soil for the blueberries? Do we need to add more acidity? We heard that the junipers are high in acidity and wanted to know if we needed to counter act that since we took them out.

ANSWER:

As far as Mr. Smarty Plants can determine, the soils in Thurston County, Washington are quite acidic (pH <6.0). Removing the junipers should not affect the acidity of the area where the blueberries are growing. In fact, removing the junipers should have a beneficial effect on the blueberries since you have removed a competitor for resources.

If you have the soil tested and find the pH has become too high, you can acidify it by adding aluminum sulfate.

 

 

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