Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
I live in riverton and want to plant triple crown blackberries and dwarf northblue blueberries. Do you have any suggestions or help?
Rate This FAQ
Riverton, typically, has heavy clay soil. Many areas there also have high salt accumulations due to poor drainage (and a history of flood irrigation). However, there are some pockets of sandy soil in some places. Before buying plants, I recommend you collect a representative soil sample and send it to the USU Analytical Lab for a "routine" soil test ($14 fee). You can read instructions about how to collect the sample and download a soil test order form from www.usual.usu.edu. Test results will be sent directly to you and also to our office; if you have questions about the recommendations I will be happy to answer them for you.
Blackberries are much more tolerant of Utah soil than blueberries, but if you are determined to grow blueberries, it can be done. Here is a good website with links to reliable information on growing berries: http://www.hort.usu.edu/html/fruits/berries.htm.
If your soil is typical Riverton soil (heavy clay, low organic matter, poorly drained, high pH, possibly high in salts) I would recommend you build a raised bed to grow your berry crops. A raised bed of about 12 to 18 inches above normal soil grade, amended with high-quality, low-salt compost, will provide the proper drainage both crops prefer. In the blueberry bed, add elemental sulfur to lower the pH. You will need to continue acidifying the soil in the blueberry bed year after year, because Utah soil is high in calcium carbonate and buffers the acidification; the pH will rise back to previous levels within one or two months. Read more about soil pH at http://extension.usu.edu/files/publications/soils2n.pdf.
After you build the blueberry bed and incorporate soil amendments, send in another soil sample and specify that you intend to grow blueberries. Then add sulfur according to the test result recommendations so that the pH of the soil will be more suitable.
I hope this helps you get started towards berry success!
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- I just recently moved into a home that has these terrible "soda straw" type weeds that I can't get rid of. They pop apart and look like tall drinking straws. I have sprayed them with multiple rounds of poison (extra strength!) and dug them out by hand 2 or three times. They are coming back stronger than ever. What should I do?
- I have a Saucer Magnolia Tree. I purchased it about 4 years ago, every year I see no growth. It has bloomed every year. But it just seems like I would see some growth? This year the leaves are yellow. I have a picture. Am I missing something? What can I do?
- I need to have my yard/garden soil tested. Who do I contact? Besides weeds, I am not able to grow any vegetables, no matter how much weeding or watering I do.
- When should I cut back spent tulips and daffadills?
- We want to grow aspen and scrub oak on our property. Can we transplant, if so how and when? Or do we need to grow from seeds? How often to water if we grow from seeds?
- I planted some fruit trees fall 2009 and am noticing tons of fruit on them already in this first year. I've heard I should pick them all and wait until the second year to let them mature. Is this right?
- What of the drought grasses mentioned Buffalograss, Blue grama, crested wheat grass or Sideouts grama grass, would most likely trigger allergy issues? Which one the least? Where to buy? Plant as sod? May we have instructions on "planting," care and maintanence, please?
- What is the best thing to do with seedlings that are too tall for the seed starting kits? I have cauliflower and tomato plants that are 'leggy' and now too tall, but not yet ready to go outside. I received last week an advertisement about that hybrid zoysia grass that needs little watering and little mowing. Is that for real and if so, would it work in our climate? Supposedly it is cold hardy to -30. If I think that I there are gophers in my yard, what is the best way to eradicate them?