Most people consider citrus fruits their all-time favorite fruit. They’re not only delicious on their own, but they can also enhance the flavor of your cooking. This guide will teach you how to grow citrus trees from the ground up!
You’ll be surprised to learn that it’s not nearly as hard as you believe. You need very little space for it. Citrus has a reputation for being tough to cultivate.
But if you follow these basic guidelines for growing and caring for your citrus fruits, you should have no issues. You will have the pleasure of harvesting your very own citrus fruit.
Let us look at how to plant the citrus tree.
How are Citrus Fruits Beneficial
We refer to trees such as lemons, lime, orange, grapefruit, kumquats, and Tangelos whenever we mention citrus fruits. Growing citrus trees is beneficial to you in the following ways.
1. They are a rich source of Vitamin C
2. Help avert the danger of kidney stones
3. Help prevent cancer
4. Rich in nutrients that improve heart health.
Now that you know why citrus fruits are essential, here’s how to grow and care for them.
Carefully Select Your Location
It’s vital to get your citrus trees off to a good kickoff and keep them in good shape by planting them in the right spot. Citrus trees prefer
- Full sun, so plants them where they’ll get plenty of it.
- A minimum of five hours of direct sunlight is required, but the more the better, so a north-facing location is ideal.
- Protection from wind- So ensure you have wind protection netting for your citrus or plant close to a wall so that they can take advantage of the reflected heat.
Choose and Prepare Your Soil Wisely
Growing your citrus fruits in a slightly acidic or neutral soil pH is advisable when planting your citrus trees. If your soil is alkaline, mulching well using organic manure is the most excellent way to lower the pH.
It’s much better if your manure contains animal wastes. So if you maintain poultry as livestock on your farming plot, frequent doses of their composted dung could help citrus plants thrive.
Animal manure will also supply sufficient nitrogen to the trees, necessary for their wholesome growth and development. It will also help to maintain well-drained soil, which is essential for efficient citrus tree growth.
Keep any grass away as it may compete for nutrients and water with the citrus tree. You can weed manually or make use of weed mat ground cover.
Planting Your Citrus Fruits
- Dig a hole twice as broad as the pot the citrus tree seedling is in and about one-and-a-half times as deep before planting it.
- Mix part of the soil from the hole with manure (ideally one that contains animal dung) and place it at the bottom of the hole.
If you live in an area with heavy clay soil, it would be ideal to mix the clay soil with some sand to improve moisture in the ground.
- Place the citrus tree seedling in the hole and fill it up with dirt.
- Pour in plenty of water.
Plant your trees in the spring when there’s no possibility of frost. They’ll need a complete growing season to get established in the horticulture plot before the winter arrives.
You can still grow a citrus tree even if you have a small place, such as a courtyard or a covered balcony. It will simply have to be in a pot citrus tree and exceptionally be a dwarf species.
Potted citrus trees have the advantage of moving around to make use of all available sunlight as the sun moves across the sky.
Caring for Your Citrus Fruits
After you have planted your citrus fruit, here are some ways you can care for the trees
Now let’s look at some ways you can care for your citrus trees.
Young citrus trees require a lot of water and should be watered once or twice a week for the first six weeks after sowing to help them establish themselves.
To avoid root rot, the soil should be well-drained. Watering early in the morning or late at night offers the plants the best chance of absorbing and using the moisture.
Safeguard Your Newly Planted Tree From Frost
Once established, most citrus trees can survive winter unless it involves extremely low temperatures. When the trees are young, and an unexpected frost is due, wrap the tree in fleece to protect it (if growing in pots, bring the pots indoors for the night). Raschel drape hail net can be draped over citrus trees to save the fruit from hail and frost.
Bronze orange bugs (sometimes referred to as stink bugs) and other sap-consuming insects destroy your trees. You can manually remove or vacuum away more giant insects, such as bronze orange bugs. These insects can spew an irritating chemical, protect your eyes and skin. You can Spray with Pest Oil or Folimat as an alternative (in an aerosol can) but the recommended method is using citrus netting.
Citrus scab. Lumps and brown scabs on the skin of citrus (particularly lemons) are symptoms of a disease called Citrus Scab but not one that affects the fruit. Remove the scabs if using the rind or use pulp or juice. Ignore the condition, or treat by spraying with a solution of copper oxychloride and white oil around October to get rid of the disease before scabs form.
Citrus in Pots
In the summer, make sure citrus in pots is well irrigated once or twice a week.
Fertilize with a complete citrus meal every six to eight weeks, interspersed with Dynamic Lifter, or use 3-4 month Osmocote in the spring and early summer.
You pollinate or control insect pollination of your fruits. For instance, you can use citrus netting if you don’t want insects to pollinate your fruit to produce seedless orange.
Citrus Tree Pruning
You do not need to prune the citrus tree to produce fruit. It would be best to shape the tree somehow, such as to get rid of low-hanging branches or branches brushing against each other that might cause bark harm and provide a disease entrance point.
Use secateurs (for thin branches) and a pruning saw (for heavier items).
Making a short incision just below the branch first, then cutting through from the top. The bark will not tear as a result of this.
You may need to prune your Citrus trees if they produce an excessive amount of fruit. Branches can be weighed down to the point of breaking by a heavy crop, mainly after heavy rain. In this case, either pluck some fruit or chop out some of the smaller branches to decrease the load.
Harvesting the Citrus
Choose one entirely green if you prefer a sour lemon, as the fruit yellows the sweeter it becomes. Even after you have harvested the lemons, they will continue to ripen.
It’s OK if the lemons are still green when they reach the proper size. The size of the fruit is essential than its color. When you leave the lemon on the branch for too long, it becomes squishy.
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