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How to Replant a Blueberry Bush

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How to Replant a Blueberry Bush

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Overview

Blueberries are one of the easiest shrubs to transplant. They have a shallow root system that is easy to dig up and they quickly settle into new planting sites. While easy to replant you must remember that you will not get berries for at least a year from replanted blueberry bushes. Prepare the new planting site before you dig up your blueberry bush and always replant the blueberry bush as promptly as possible.

Step 1

Transplant blueberries while they are dormant. Blueberries go dormant in mid to late fall and stay dormant until mid spring.

Step 2

Choose a spot in full sun with well-drained soil to replant your blueberry bushes.

Step 3

Remove weeds, rocks and other debris from the planting area. Work 3 to 4 inches of compost or well-rotted manure into the top 6 inches of soil. Rake the planting bed smooth.

Step 4

Test the pH of the soil. The ideal pH for blueberries is between 4.5 and 5.5. To lower the pH of work sulfur into the top 6 inches of soil. To raise the pH work lime into the top 6 inches of soil.

Step 5

Measure out 1 foot from the tips of the bush's branches going all around the blueberry. This 1 foot radius around the bush will be the edges of the hole you dig to remove the blueberry. Dig down 1 to 2 feet then undercut the bush at a 45 degree angle. Use your shovel to gently lever it from the soil.

Step 6

Use pruning shears or loppers to reduce the size of your blueberry bush by 30 to 40 percent.

Step 7

Plant your blueberry at the same depth it was growing at in its former home. Spread the blueberry roots out and dig a hole that is just wide enough to accommodate the spread roots. Gently tamp the removed soil around the roots to eliminate air pockets. Spacing will vary depending on variety.

Step 8

Give your blueberry bush 1 to 2 inches of water after planting.

Step 9

Mulch your replanted blueberry bush with 3 to 5 inches of acidic mulch like sawdust, shredded bark, woodchips or wood shavings.

Tips and Warnings

  • All varieties of blueberries will die if planted in poorly drained soil. If you have heavy clay, try planting blueberries in containers or raised beds. Blueberry bushes need both full sun and acidic soil to produce berries.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Compost or well-rotted manure
  • Rake
  • Soil pH test
  • Sulfur (if needed)
  • Lime (if needed)
  • Measuring tape
  • Pruning shears or loppers
  • Acidic mulch like sawdust, woodchips, shredded bark or wood shavings

References

  • "The Garden Primer;" Barbara Damrosch; 1988
  • Oregon State University Extension Service; Growing Blueberries in Your Home Garden
  • Iowa State University Extension; Growing Blueberries in the Home Garden

Who Can Help

  • National Sustainable Agriculture Information Service; Blueberries: Organic Production
Keywords: transplanting blueberries, moving blueberry bushes, propagating blueberries, blueberry bushes, blueberries

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