At the end of this month, the blue berry bush bare roots I ordered should arrive. These are a variety for warmer climes, but still need acidic soil, so began doing some research on what I can do to keep the soil acidic. If we had enough rain to keep rain butts full for the year, that would be fine, but we don’t and our ground water is very hard and very basic. So creating some acidic compost is on the list of things to do: bone meal, peat moss, pine needles, juniper berries, coffee grounds, rhubarb leaves! All the italicized are items I’ve got and can readily accumulate.
That lead to finding out information about blossom end rot (which my tomatoes and zucchini and sometimes peppers get) and reading about making eggshells a more accessible form of calcium. Now, in our hard water world, our water already has a lot of calcium, but is basic. So what follows that logic is acidifying the soil in general so the calcium is more readily available to the plants. All the references, by the way, state eggshells should break down in a year if left intact. Let me tell you about our basic hard water world; NO. I’ve got intact eggshells after more than 2 years!
So for blueberries there is the making of acidic compost and acidic compost tea, including coffee grounds made acidic water. For blossom end rot, there is drying and grinding the eggshells to powder and putting that around the roots when planting the seedlings. Also, using vinegar to dissolve the eggshells, adding to water with some Epsom salts to make a slightly acidic compound to use on the veggies so they will absorb the calcium better.
The coffee grounds acidic water should also help with broccoli as they need a slightly more acidic soil than we have.
And people wonder why I container garden!! And I also saw some interesting videos about the concept of “air pruning” when using grow bags over hard pots. . .