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how do I change to acid soil from nutral. My rhododendrons are dying.

nina

By Nina

United Kingdom Gb

I took over a garden when we moved and there were lots of Rhododendrons and Azaleas. Now I discover the soil is not acid - how can I save them???




Answers

 

http://www.homeimprovementpages.com.au/article/Acidic_and_Alkaline_Soil
I find this a very useful site. Good luck.

5 Feb, 2009

 

You will have to lift the shrubs and take out larger holes round them, put in an Ericaceous compost, after replanting, water with Sequestered Iron.

5 Feb, 2009

 

Yep, iron, I remember throwing some nails in the ground for these flowers to give them the blue colour.

5 Feb, 2009

 

Sorry Marguerite, that's for Hydrangeas not Rhodo's.

5 Feb, 2009

 

Nina - are they looking sad due to the frost? I'm just wondering because you said they were there when you came. What was the Ph of the test you did?

Do you know how long they've been there? If they are still small, that could be a mistake by the previous owner, but if they are large, they must have been OK for a few years - (unless they are dying slowly!)

In that case, I would wait until the spring to see if they revive - it's going to be a big job for you to dig them all up and replant. A watering with Sequestrene will help them anyway.

This is only a thought - Docbob is usually spot on with advice!

5 Feb, 2009

Sid
Sid
 

I'm on neutral soil. My Rhodos are planted into large containers of ericaceous compo sunk into the ground and are doing pretty well and getting big on it. I'm afraid you can't change the natural pH of your soil as it is dependant upon the substrate.

5 Feb, 2009

 

Thank you Spitz for the compliment, I know it would be hard work as I have done it myself with a large bed of Rhodo's and Azaleas, working on the same principle as Sid, making a large area on which the Rhodo's etc. can grow. I was thinking on the lines of the rootball growing out into alkaline soil. Do not water with tap water if you are in a hard water area.
At the same time as you are doing this you can remove any rubble (containing lime) but remember drainage is most essential, if you are on a clay surface.

5 Feb, 2009

 

The other thing they may be short of is humus. In spring, spread some garden compost around the roots, making sure not to spread it too thickly and avoid it laying against the trunks of the plants. Do not try to fork it in, just leave it on the surface and worms will do the rest for you

5 Feb, 2009

 

I do the same as Sid and my acid lovers are fine..

5 Feb, 2009

 

If as Spritz asks they were there for years when you took over , then follow Andrewr 's advice(he is one of the most knowledgable gardeners on this site). For myself I would take them out if the are youngish plants, give them to a friend who has the right soil and plant the many wonderful plants suitable for my soil!!!!!

6 Feb, 2009

 

Thank you Wyeboy - the cheque's in the post :-D

6 Feb, 2009

 

Thank you all for your advice. Very much appreciated. We spent yesterday removing the compost heap that we made near by thinking that might also have some effect. It needed turning anyway. And the weather was glorious - That with your advice taken I hope I shall be in garden heaven. Thankyou.

8 Feb, 2009

How do I say thanks?

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