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Blueberry plant dying again

Hello there dear gardeners. My blueberry plant is dying and apart from being in a balcony in this cold and wet weather I can not think of any other reason. Last year I lost another blueberry plant for the same reason but I did not know untill now that cold and rain is the reason. I have pruned the dying plant. Is there any hope for it? Please give me some advice. I bought it last year as a 5 year old fully grown plant and planted it in a big pot. Container gardening is not fun after all and I am thinking of giving up ☹


  • Allotment BoyAllotment Boy North London Posts: 5,838

    Don't be too hasty has it just lost leaves? I do not grow Bluberries but the RHS website tells me they are deciduous so you would expect the leaves to fall at this time of year. When you pruned if the inside of the stems was green or had a green out ring just below the brown bark then it is still very much alive & will come back in spring. If you are in an exposed area you could try putting up a windbreak or wrapping the pot in bubble wrap to protect the roots from freezing. What sort of container is it in what soil?. Bluberries need ericaceous soil and will be best in a ceramic or terracotta pot, as this will help insulate the roots but also allow them to breathe.

    AB Still learning

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,869

    I've got 3 blueberry bushes in pots.

    This time of year, there is not a single leaf between them, just bare stems with tiny buds waiting for the spring.
    Cold and rain should not upset them unless the drainage holes in your pots are blocked and the roots have been water-logged. Do the pots fell very heavy? You could use some pot feet to raise the pots an inch off the ground to help with drainage, or if the compost is very compacted and water-logged, you could re-pot using ericaceous compost.

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • Thank Iain R for your reply. The stems are some green near the root but top part is mostly dry and breaks of easily. It is in a plastic pot in ericaceous compost. I grow them in a balcony here in London and I have another blueberry bush which is smaller but doing well. Will try to get a terracotta pot for the healthy one. Regards

  • Pete8 the pot does feel heavy ☹ and I am very anxious to repot as last year I did the same mistake and that plant did not make it. It had pretty little red buds which seemed very dry and shrivelled which is why I had a closer look and realised the plant has suffered. Thanks for your reply. Regards

    Last edited: 10 January 2018 12:01:55

  • I give my blueberry sequstrated iron once a year in spring. Without iron they cannot take up nutrients so well. I have 5 in pots, I also re pot them every 2/3 years in fresh ericaceous compost

  • Thanks for the tip Ron McKeating. I feed them with ericaceous feed in the growing seasons and I thought that was it for blueberries. Will try the sequstrated iron this year. I hope my plant survive this time I will do more to protect them from now on.

  • Great, in the old days gardeners would plant blueberries on top of a handful of iron nails, a sachet from B&Q is much easier. Also you can take cuttings from them to keep new plants coming. 

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,869

    Most ericaceous  plant food contains sequestered iron

    A feed of dilute seaweed extract now and then will give your plants an extra tonic and is great stuff for just about all plants

    Iron nails rusty or not will do no good I'm afraid. Rust is iron oxide and not water soluble, so the iron cannot be taken-up by plants

    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
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