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  • From: "Jim Fruth" <>
  • To: "NAFEX" <>
  • Subject: [NAFEX] Sulfur; pellet or dust
  • Date: Tue, 29 Jan 2008 08:35:18 -0600

Alan said, "On the subject of acidifying soil, sulfur is my ally, in the pelletized form as Lee suggested."

Sulfur doesn't do any acidifying until it gets incorporated into the soil. My blueberries are mulched! If I was to apply sulfur pellets and do it right, I would have to pull the much back, remove the drip irrigation and till it in. Then I'd have to put it all back again. No, I'll not use pellets.
Spreading sulfur dust is a hassle because I have to wait for a completely windless time. With the sulfur laying upon the (pine needle) mulch, I immediately turn on the sprinklers to get it down to the root zone. Really, though, pellets would work atop the mulch too but it would take longer. With whatever form of sulfur I'd use atop mulch, it is going to take alot of years for the soil bacteria to get it down to the root zone. When I spread sulfur dust, I also spread Ammonium Sulfate. The Ammonium Sulfate will acidify long before the Sulfur does anything.
That brings up another subject, the buffering quality of soil. When I acidified my soil to plant blueberries, I had the urge to add extra sulfur to counteract the soil buffering, but that would have been too acid for the plants. Now that the plants have been in the ground for a few years, the soil has begun to bounce back toward the pH it had been at before I acidified it and now I must acidify it again. Perhaps I was too hasty in installing the drip irrigation. I probably should have waited because I knew this day was coming.
The soil pH is ten points higher than it was when I planted the bed. Sure, I got a nice crop but many of the leaves are turning purple and that is a sign that the patch needs more acid.

Jim Fruth
Brambleberry Farm
Pequot Lakes, MN 56472
For jams, jellies & syrups:
(877)265-6856 [Store]
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  • [NAFEX] Sulfur; pellet or dust, Jim Fruth, 01/29/2008

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