How to Balance pH for Wandering Jew: A Comprehensive Guide

Wandering Jew, also known as Tradescantia, is a popular houseplant that is loved for its vibrant foliage and easy care requirements. However, to keep your Wandering Jew healthy and thriving, it is essential to maintain the right pH balance in the soil. In this article, we will guide you through the process of balancing the pH for your Wandering Jew plant.

What is the Ideal pH Range for Wandering Jew?

The ideal pH range for Wandering Jew plants is between 5.8 to 6.2, which is slightly acidic. This range allows the plant to absorb the necessary nutrients from the soil efficiently. If the pH level is too high or too low, it can lead to nutrient deficiencies and other health issues.

How to Test the pH of Your Wandering Jew’s Soil

wandering jewImage source: Pixabay

To determine the current pH level of your Wandering Jew’s soil, you will need to use a soil testing kit. These kits are readily available at local garden stores or online. Follow the instructions provided with the kit to obtain an accurate reading of the soil’s pH.

Adjusting the pH for Wandering Jew

If the soil pH is above 6.2, you can lower it by adding elemental sulfur, aluminum sulfate, or a sulfuric acid-based soil amendment. The amount of amendment required will depend on the size of your pot and the current soil pH. As a general guide, use the following quantities:

  • For a 6-inch pot, add 1/4 teaspoon of elemental sulfur or aluminum sulfate.
  • For an 8-inch pot, add 1/2 teaspoon of elemental sulfur or aluminum sulfate.
  • For a 10-inch pot, add 3/4 teaspoon of elemental sulfur or aluminum sulfate.
See also  How to Balance pH for Water Hemlock

If the soil pH is below 5.8, you can raise it by adding lime. There are different types of lime available, such as calcitic lime and dolomitic lime. Choose the one that best suits your needs. Use the following quantities as a guide:

  • For a 6-inch pot, add 1/2 teaspoon of lime.
  • For an 8-inch pot, add 1 teaspoon of lime.
  • For a 10-inch pot, add 1 1/2 teaspoons of lime.

After adding the amendment, mix it thoroughly into the soil and water the plant deeply. This will help distribute the amendment evenly and ensure that the roots are in contact with the adjusted pH.

Home Remedies for Balancing pH in Wandering Jew

wandering jew 2Image source: Pixabay

In addition to using commercial amendments, there are some home remedies you can use to balance the pH of your Wandering Jew’s soil:

  • To lower the pH, you can use a solution of 1 tablespoon of white vinegar per gallon of water. Water your plant with this solution once a month.
  • To raise the pH, you can add a handful of wood ash to the soil. Mix it in thoroughly and water the plant.

Monitoring and Maintaining the pH for Wandering Jew

After adjusting the pH, it is crucial to monitor it regularly to ensure it stays within the ideal range. Test the soil pH every 2-3 weeks and make adjustments as needed. Consistency is key to maintaining a healthy pH balance for your Wandering Jew.

In addition to balancing the pH, there are other factors to consider for optimal growth and health of your Wandering Jew:

  • Light: Provide your Wandering Jew with bright, indirect light. Avoid direct sunlight, which can scorch the leaves.
  • Water: Keep the soil consistently moist but not soggy. Water the plant when the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch.
  • Temperature: Maintain a temperature range of 60-80°F (15-26°C) for your Wandering Jew.
  • Humidity: Wandering Jews prefer humidity levels around 50-70%. If the air is too dry, mist the leaves regularly or place a humidity tray near the plant.
  • Fertilizer: Feed your Wandering Jew with a balanced, water-soluble fertilizer every 2-4 weeks during the growing season. Dilute the fertilizer to half strength to prevent root burn.
See also  How to Balance pH for Portulaca Grandiflora

By following these guidelines and maintaining the proper pH balance, your Wandering Jew will thrive and reward you with lush, vibrant foliage.

How Long Does it Take to Balance pH in Wandering Jew?

The time it takes to balance the pH in your Wandering Jew’s soil depends on various factors, such as the current pH level, the size of the pot, and the type of amendment used. Generally, it can take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks to see the desired results.

After adjusting the pH, wait for at least a week before testing the soil again. This will give the amendments time to work their magic and stabilize the pH level. If the pH is still not within the ideal range, make further adjustments as needed.

Conclusion

Balancing the pH for your Wandering Jew is a simple yet essential task that will ensure your plant stays healthy and vibrant. By following the steps outlined in this guide, you can easily test, adjust, and maintain the ideal pH range for your Wandering Jew. Remember to monitor the pH regularly and provide your plant with the proper care it needs to thrive.

With a little bit of effort and attention, you can enjoy the beauty of your Wandering Jew for years to come.

References:
1. Epic Gardening – Wandering Jew Plant Care Guide
2. Houzz – Purple Heart Wandering Jew Losing Its Colour
3. Plant Addicts – Purple Wandering Jew Care Guide