CITRUS TREE CARE:
Here at the Jungle, we sell a lot of citrus trees, from lemons and limes, to grapefruit, cumquats and oranges.
An interesting thing about citrus trees is that they will easily hybridize with different citrus pollens, making it difficult sometimes, to grow fruit that is true to what it is supposed to be. Plants grown from a lemon seed may produce fruit that is more similar to a lime, or an orange, and vice versa. Because of this, all commercial citrus cultivation is done by grafting. By grafting, two trees are 'fused' together on to a selected rootstock, or trunk, to produce a self-flowering, self-pollinating, ever-bearing citrus tree.
By doing this, there is no need to pollinate and therefore, removing the risk of cross-pollination and hybridization. A Persian Lime tree that you buy will take care of flowering, pollinating and fruiting all on it's own, and you will always get Persian Limes.
Plenty of sunlight, consistent climate and proper watering is extremely important for citrus trees to thrive and produce fruit for you. Being tropical trees, they require lots of sunlight. This can be difficult in our region, especially in the winter, so many hobbyists and collectors use artificial lighting. Another issue we face in the colder climates is humidity. The winters can be very tough for citrus trees, as the air is cold and dry, and heating of homes and office spaces further dries out the air. Tanks or humidifiers are a must to keep your citrus tree happy throughout the winter.
The soil should be fast draining, loamy and moist at all times. Even though citrus trees want to remain moist and humid all the time, they do not want to be sitting in puddles of murky water, so a planter with drainage is important.
Citrus trees also do not usually respond well to transplant and therefore, should only be repotted about every 3-5 years. They will develop a large root ball mass at the bottom of the pot, but prefer to remain somewhat pot bound. Repotting you citrus tree too frequently will cause stress and poor fruit production. If you have recently purchased your citrus tree, do not repot it for at least 1 year.
Unfortunately, pests love citrus trees, especially Aphids, Whitefly and Red Spider Mites. Scale can also find their way to your citrus tree. For information on prevention and treatment, see our At Home Pest Recipes here.
If you have any more questions, or need further assistance, please feel to give us a call or shoot us an email!