How big does meyer lemon tree get


Everything You Need to Know About Meyer Lemon Trees

If you haven’t heard of a Meyer lemon before, you’re missing out on this farmers market favorite. Meyer lemons are a thin-skinned hybrid fruit, part lemon and part mandarin orange, making them much sweeter than the kind of lemon you’d see at a grocery store.

You can’t find Meyer lemons on your grocery run, since they aren’t grown commercially. If you want to get a taste of these sweet-tart fruits, you need to consider getting your very own Meyer lemon tree.

Meyer Lemon Trees at a Glance

Meyer lemon trees can yield fruit in just two years after planting them. Whether you choose to place one in your lawn or in your patio, your Meyer lemon tree can be both ornamental and a source of citrus sweetness.

  • Cross between lemons and mandarin oranges
  • Chefs use the sweet-tart skins
  • Self-pollinating
  • Can bear fruit in as little as two years
  • Will fruit indoors and outdoors
  • Heavy harvest in winter
  • Require consistent misting

History of the Meyer Lemon Tree

The first Meyer lemon trees were introduced from China in 1908. Unfortunately, this initial variety was very susceptible to disease, especially a fast-spreading virus that threatened the citrus industry in California in the 1960s by infecting nearby healthy citrus trees.

In 1975, the University of California introduced an all-new variety, called the “Improved Meyer lemon tree.” That’s the one we know and grow today. It’s more disease-resistant, and insect-resistant.

Appearance of Meyer Lemon Trees

Standard Meyer lemon trees grow to be 6-10 feet tall, while the dwarf variety grow to be 5-7 feet. If you grow your Meyer lemon tree in a garden pot, it will grow according to the size of the pot and be smaller.

Meyer lemon trees have glossy, dark green leaves and fragrant white blossoms that are purple at the base. When they’re ripe, the skins of Meyer lemons will take on the color of an egg yolk—yellow with a faint orange tinge. Meyer lemon skins are fragrant and a popular ingredient among chefs.

Appearance Details & Characteristics

CharacteristicDetails
AppearanceGlossy green leaves, white blossoms, yellow-orange fruits
Height6-10 feet tall, with dwarf variety of 5-7 feet tall
Hardiness Zones8-11
Type of treeFruit
Sunlight requirements8-12 hours of direct sunlight per day
Soil composition5. 5-6.5 pH level
LifespanUp to 50 years

Growing Meyer Lemon Trees

Here’s what you need to know before you decide to grow your own Meyer lemon tree.

Ideal Hardiness Zones

Meyer lemon trees flourish in USDA Hardiness Zones 8-11, which are regions on the southern coastal margins and deep southern half of the US. Hardiness Zones are the standards gardeners use to determine the best growing regions for their plants and crops.

Planting Meyer Lemon Trees

These are the steps to follow to plant your Meyer lemon tree in a pot.

  • Select a sturdy container with drainage holes that is 1-2 sizes larger than the container the tree arrived in.
  • Place a 2-inch layer of stone at the bottom of the pot.
  • Create a potting mixture with peat moss, potting soil, and either vermiculite or perlite in the pot.
  • Slide the tree out of the container.
  • Cut off dry roots and fluff matted roots.
  • Place the tree in the center of the pot.
  • Place the potting mixture in the pot so that the crown of the roots rest just above the line of the soil.
  • Add water slowly.
  • Place the tree by a south-facing window.

Soil Requirements

The trees require soil with good drainage and do well in loamy and sandy loam soils. The soil can range between 5.5 and 6.5 pH. You can amend your soil to reach the desired pH level, either adding sulfur to increase soil acidity or lime to lower overly acidic soil.

Sunlight Needed

Meyer lemon trees thrive in full sunlight, requiring 8-12 hours of direct sunlight per day, preferably from the southwest, whether indoors or outdoors. If this isn’t possible inside, consider investing in grow lights.

Watering a Meyer Lemon Tree

Citrus trees need soil that is moist but not wet to thrive, especially if they are grown in pots. The best method is to water deeply but infrequently. Water when the upper two inches of the soil is dry. You can test this by pressing your finger into the soil down to your second knuckle and seeing if the soil feels dry or moist.

Citrus leaves crave humidity. If you have an indoor Meyer lemon tree, mist it daily. It’s also a good idea to place rocks and water in the saucer beneath your garden pot, so that humidity will rise up.

Optimal Temperature

Meyer lemon trees thrive between roughly 50 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit. If the temperature drops below 50 degrees Fahrenheit, you should bring your Meyer lemon tree indoors until it heats up again.

Pollination Tips

One major benefit of Meyer lemon trees is that they are self-fertile. You only need one of these self-pollinating trees to get fruit. Planting several will increase your overall harvest, but isn’t necessary.

Meyer lemon trees start bearing fruit at different times, depending on how they were grown. Trees grown from grafted rootstock can start bearing fruit in as soon as two years, while seed-grown trees, which tend to be less healthy in general, start bearing fruit at three to seven years old.

Meyer lemon trees will fruit either indoors or outdoors once or twice a year, with especially abundant harvests in fall and winter.

If your Meyer lemon tree is located outdoors, pollination should take care of itself. But if you have an indoor Meyer lemon tree—or an outdoor one that you bring inside during cold temperatures—you can assist with pollination. Take a paintbrush or cotton swab and ease it into the center of a Meyer lemon blossom and swirl it, collecting the pollen. Then, repeat the process with every other blossom on the tree.

Pruning a Meyer Lemon Tree

You should prune your Meyer lemon tree periodically to keep it in its best health, maintain its structure and shape, and ensure that its branches can support fruit. Cut back the branches that do not produce fruit—called long leads—as they grow. The side branches will spread into that space and strengthen so that they can bear the weight of the fruit. Cut any branches that are growing toward the trunk to increase airflow between the branches.

Pruning your Meyer lemon tree before its fruit develops—cutting off every bud in a cluster except for one—can help stimulate the growth of larger lemons.

Fertilizing a Meyer Lemon Tree

Your Meyer lemon tree can benefit from monthly fertilizations from April through September. Select a slow-release nitrogen-rich fertilizer. Some are created specifically for citrus trees. You can also use organic emulsions or kelp.

Yellowing leaves can be a sign you need to fertilize your Meyer lemon tree.

Frequently Asked Questions

How long does it take for a Meyer lemon tree to bear fruit?

The amount of time it takes depends on how the tree was grown. A grafted tree can bear fruit in as little as two years, while seed-grown Meyer lemon trees can take anywhere from three to seven years to produce fruit.

How do you take care of a Meyer lemon tree?

Caring for a Meyer lemon tree involves watering the soil deeply but infrequently and misting its leaves, promoting good soil drainage, allowing your tree to get at least 8 hours of direct sunlight, and more.

How big do Meyer lemon trees get?

Standard Meyer lemon trees grow to be 6-10 feet tall, while the dwarf variety grow to be 5-7 feet tall.

Are coffee grounds good for Meyer lemon trees?

It depends on the acidity or alkalinity of your soil. The ideal soil pH for your Meyer lemon tree is between 5.5 and 6.5 pH. Coffee grounds can increase the acidity of the soil if needed.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at [email protected].

What To Know About Growing Meyer Lemon Trees

Every editorial product is independently selected, though we may be compensated or receive an affiliate commission if you buy something through our links. Ratings and prices are accurate and items are in stock as of time of publication.

Barbara Rich/Getty Images

Meyer lemon trees grown in containers can be taken inside in winter. Where it's warmer, they can be grown in the ground. Either way, delicious lemons!

Have you thought about growing trees indoors? Some, including the Meyer lemon tree, make excellent houseplants!

I’m fascinated by the story of the Meyer lemon, a hybrid citrus tree that produces lemons that are larger, sweeter and thinner skinned than the lemons you find in the grocery store. Its story includes everything from the adventures of the plant hunter, Frank N. Meyer, who found the original tree in China in 1908, to its adoration by chefs and kitchen trendsetters in the early 21st century.

You can find it labeled with the botanical name Citrus x meyeri ‘Improved’ or Citrus x limon ‘Meyer.’

On This Page

Where Do Meyer Lemon Trees Grow?

Meyer lemon trees are hardy in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 9 to 11. For those who garden in colder zones, Meyer lemon trees can be grown in containers and moved indoors for the winter.

How to Care for Meyer Lemon Trees

Whether in the ground or in a container, following some general tree care tips will get you off to a great start with your Meyer lemon tree.

Growing Meyer lemon trees outdoors in the ground

  • Choose a location with well-draining soil, full sun and room for the tree to grow.
  • Keep your tree watered, especially as it is becoming established. Water deeply and allow the top few inches of soil to dry out before watering again.
  • While the tree is actively growing from spring through fall, add a fertilizer labeled for citrus trees. Space out applications following instructions on the package.
  • Meyer lemon trees don’t require regular pruning unless you want to shape it or control the size. According to Christy Wilhelmi, author of Grow Your Own Mini Fruit Garden, “Citrus is fairly forgiving if you stick to removing branches that are dead, diseased and disorderly. The best time to prune citrus is after the tree finishes fruiting but before it begins to flower again.”

Growing Meyer lemon trees in containers

  • Choose a container with drainage holes on the bottom that fits the tree you’re starting with. As the tree grows, repot into larger containers. Use a potting soil mix that drains well. Place the container in full sun when outside.
  • Water deeply when the top few inches of soil are dry. Don’t let the container stand in a saucer of water.
  • Add a fertilizer labeled for citrus trees when the tree is actively growing, from spring through fall.
  • Prune to keep the tree to a size you can manage.
  • Overwinter your tree indoors unless you live in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 9 to 11. Then you can leave your trees outside all year. Otherwise, take your lemon tree indoors in the fall, before temperatures dip below 50 F at night. Indoors, it will need bright light and cooler temperatures. Water only when dry and mist daily. In the spring, once nighttime temperatures are again averaging 50 F and warmer, gradually acclimate your Meyer lemon tree to the outdoors by taking it out for a few hours a day. Add a few more hours each day until you can leave it out fulltime.
  • Hand pollinate flowers to ensure fruit set if your tree blooms indoors. With a small artist paint brush, swipe the inside of a flower to pick up pollen, then brush the pollen on other flowers. Outdoors, bees and wind pollinate Meyer lemon trees.

How Big Do Meyer Lemon Trees Get?

Barbara Rich/Getty Images

If grown outside year-round, Meyer lemon trees will grow to 10 to 12 feet tall and eight to 10 feet wide. Meyer lemon trees in containers will stay smaller, around three to six feet tall depending on the age of the tree and the size of the container.

Can Meyer Lemon Trees Survive a Freeze?

According to Teresa Watkins, host of the Better Lawns and Gardens Radio show, based in Orlando, Florida, “While Meyer lemons can handle a small amount of chill hours (temperatures at or below 40 F), they need to be protected from temperatures 25 F or less. In the South, cover small trees with a frost blanket draped to the ground or if small enough, cover with a cardboard box.”

Once temperatures warm up again, frost coverings should be removed.

Where to Buy a Meyer Lemon Tree

The best place to buy a Meyer lemon tree is a local garden center. There you can make sure the tree is healthy, with no signs of insect infestation, disease or stress from poor care.

You can also buy a Meyer lemon tree from a mail order nursery, such as Logee’s Plants for Home and Garden. Some large retailers, such as Lowes and The Home Depot, work with smaller nurseries to provide a mail order option. Always note the size of the plant you’re buying online. You might be getting a small starter plant in a four-inch pot when you were expecting a much bigger plant in a gallon container.

Note that many mail order nurseries are not allowed by law to ship Meyer lemon trees to several states where citrus is grown commercially, including California and Florida, due to the possibility of disease. If purchasing Meyer lemon trees in those states, Watkins notes trees must be verified citrus-greening free.

Popular Videos

Originally Published: June 27, 2022

Carol J. Michel

Carol J. Michel is an award-winning author of several books including five gardening humor books and one children's book. As the holder of degrees from Purdue University in both horticulture and computer technology, she spent over three decades making a living in healthcare IT while making a life in her garden. She started writing about gardening on her blog called May Dreams Gardens which lead to numerous magazine articles, her books, and a podcast called The Gardenangelists. She was recently named a GardenComm Fellow by Garden Communicators International.

Meyer Lemon

Meyer Lemon is one of the most common varieties of indoor lemons. This variety combines small size, easy care and excellent yield. It is for these qualities that he gained his popularity. But any experienced and novice citrus grower should know not only how and where to buy Meyer Lemon , but also how to care for it. In this article, we will talk about the proper care of this citrus, as well as its origin and basic properties.

Origin

Meyer's Lemon (Latin name Cítrus × méyerii) is a hybrid citrus species that was created by crossing lemon and orange in natural conditions, combining their properties. There are still disputes about its origin, but the most common version is that this lemon comes from China. Therefore, it is sometimes called the Chinese lemon. There it grows in natural conditions, reaching a height of 8 meters. Also, this lemon is very popular among the Chinese as an indoor ornamental plant.

Meyer's lemon was introduced to the USA in 1908 by Frank Nicholas Meyer, an employee of the US Department of Agriculture. It is in honor of him that this variety got its name. It was actively studied in laboratories, but gained popularity as a food product and home ornamental plant only in the 90s of the last century. Gradually, the Meyer lemon from the USA spread to Europe, and then to Russia, and now we can see it in our apartments.

General characteristics

Meyer's lemon is a small tree 1.5-2 meters high. It has dark green leaves, they are shiny and oval. Plants of this variety differ from their counterparts in high productivity and the ability to grow in a variety of climatic conditions. This variety has a moderate growth rate, it is early flowering. Caring for this lemon is simple, even a novice citrus grower can handle it.

Flowering and fruiting

Meyer Lemon has a high yield. Plants can bear fruit all year round. Flowers on it can form not only on adult shoots, but also on young branches. These citrus fruits are characterized by abundant flowering. But, despite the beauty of the flowering of the plant, some of the flowers should be removed, as the plant spends too many resources on flowering. This negatively affects the general condition of the plant, contributes to its depletion, and subsequently the quality of the fruits suffers and their quantity decreases.

Meyera's flowers are small, white with a purple base and have a very pleasant smell. They are collected in small cluster-shaped inflorescences.

The first fruiting usually begins at the age of three years. The fruits of the Meyer variety are round and small, their weight ranges from 70 to 150 grams. The zest is dark yellow, turning a little orange over time. They have a thin and smooth skin. The flesh of the lemon is dark yellow, it tastes sweeter and not as sour as other lemons, a bit like an orange. There are not very many seeds in these lemons, up to 10 per fruit.

But the fruits of the variety do not tolerate transportation well and quickly deteriorate, which is why this variety is not of great commercial interest. And, accordingly, buy Meyer lemon , as a fruit you will not succeed in any store.

Care instructions

The Meyer variety is high yielding and easy to care for.

Lighting

Meyer is a light-loving plant, so good lighting is very important for this lemon. The best solution is to provide the lemon with 12 hours of daylight throughout the year, otherwise the plant may throw off all the leaves due to lack of lighting.

Lemon should be grown in bright diffused light. In summer, you can take the pot with the plant to the loggia or balcony. In winter, the lemon needs additional lighting, you can provide it with the help of fitolamps. It is recommended to place the plant on a window on the west or east side. Also avoid prolonged exposure of the lemon tree to direct sunlight.

Temperature conditions

Sudden temperature changes and drafts have a very negative effect on this variety of lemon, so you need to protect your lemon from this. It is not recommended to take it out to an unglazed balcony when it is cool outside. In summer, you need to protect the lemon tree from being in direct sunlight for a long time to prevent the plant from overheating.

In winter, it is worth keeping the lemon away from radiators and open windows to avoid the negative effects of overheating and drafts.
The most optimal temperature for growing Meyer lemon is 20 C.

Watering and air humidity

Meyer lemon loves humid air, so the humidity in the room where it is kept must be maintained at a level of at least 70%. It is especially important to pay attention to humidity in winter. To maintain humidity, use a humidifier or water containers.

In summer, the lemon tree requires fairly frequent watering. Watering is carried out by the root and foliar method: at the same time, the soil in the pot is watered and lemon leaves are sprayed from the spray bottle. For watering and spraying use settled water at room temperature.

The soil of the lemon should be slightly moist at all times, drying out can adversely affect its health. In the autumn-winter period, the number of irrigations is reduced.

Top dressing

Lemon needs top dressing during its growth. To do this, you need to feed the plant with mineral complex fertilizers twice a month.
To achieve higher yields, fertilizers must be applied throughout the growing season. In autumn, feeding stops.

Transplanting

An important aspect of care for Meyer lemon is transplanting. Young trees under the age of 5 years should be replanted annually. Adult trees can be transplanted less often - once every 2-3 years.

The transplant pot is best chosen from clay. The size of the new pot is selected depending on the size of the roots of the tree. Do not plant a small plant in a pot that is too big for it.

As for the selection of the substrate for planting, it is best to make a mixture of humus, leafy and soddy soil in equal proportions. You can also add a handful of sand to this mixture. Or you can buy special soil for planting citrus fruits in the agro-shop. Keep an eye on the acidity of the soil, a neutral pH is optimal.

Pruning

Every spring, preventive pruning of lemon is carried out: dry, dead, diseased branches are removed, as well as shoots that bore fruit last season.
You also need to form the crown of a lemon tree, you can read about how to do it correctly in one of the previous articles. With proper pruning, you can create a neat crown for your tree.

Popular:

Featured Item

Featured Item

Featured Item

Featured Item

Featured Item

Lemon


About lemon in detail:

1. Plant description
2. Composition of lemon fruits
3. Application of lemon
4. Climate for growing lemon
5. Lemon groups: ordinary, sweet, rough, various 6. Collection and storage of fruits
7. Lemon propagation methods
8. Indoor culture of lemon
9. Cultivation of lemon in the open field. Trench and creeping lemon crop
10. Growing lemon in greenhouses, greenhouses, winter gardens
11. General recommendations for caring for lemon: soil, watering, air humidity, air temperature, lighting, top dressing, transplanting, pruning
12. Varieties and hybrids lemon varieties
13. Lemon varieties for outdoor cultivation
14. Lemon varieties for indoor cultivation
15. Diseases of indoor lemons
16. Diseases of lemons grown in the open field, fruit diseases during storage
17. Lemon pests


fruits are yellow (sometimes orange or reddish) in color. The life expectancy of a plant is 45 years or more. Tree-like varieties are distinguished by high yields, the formation of fruits in them occurs in the depths of the crown. Bushy varieties grow up to 3-3.5 m in height, they are less productive, have a rather rare crown, the fruits are located at the end of the branches. On old shoots of lemon, the bark is gray, has small cracks, young branches are painted green or red-violet. In many varieties, the shoots are covered with thorns. The plant has beautiful dark green oblong or broadly oval leaves 10-15 cm long, 5-8 cm wide, glossy on the upper side and matte on the lower side. Lemon flowers (up to 3 cm in diameter) are single or paired, have a pleasant aroma with hints of jasmine. Fruits are oval or ovoid, up to 9cm, width - up to 6, at the end there is a small or elongated nipple. The bumpy or almost smooth peel is separated from the pulp with difficulty. Usually there are seeds inside the fruit, but seedless varieties are also found. To taste, lemons are not only sour, but also sweet and sour.

Composition of lemon fruits

The characteristic sour taste of the pulp is due to the organic acids contained in it in large quantities: citric and malic. In addition to them, fruits contain pectins (polysaccharides), sugars, vitamins (A, C, groups B, E, PP), flavonoids, alpha and beta carotenes (plant pigments), essential oils, micro and macro elements. There is especially a lot of potassium in lemons - up to 138 mg per 100 g of the fetus, and calcium - 26 mg. The peel contains lemon oil and citronine glycoside, thanks to which it has a unique taste and aroma.

Application of lemon

Lemons (pulp, juice, zest) are widely used in the manufacture of confectionery, desserts, salads, first and second courses, sauces, juices, alcoholic and tonic drinks.
Not only fruits, but also other parts of the plant are used in folk medicine, pharmacology and cosmetology. Furniture manufacturers appreciate lemon wood, which has a beautiful yellow or light brown color.

Climate for growing lemon

Regions with a subtropical climate are the most suitable for growing lemons. Trees are cultivated in many countries: in Turkey, Italy (especially on the island of Sicily), Spain, Greece, India, Mexico, Lebanon, the Republic of Cyprus, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Georgia, Moldova. In Russia, citrus crops are not grown on an industrial scale, since even in the subtropical regions of the country it does not have enough heat for full development and fruiting, and lemons have to be protected from rather low temperatures, which still happen in winter. Plants freeze completely already at -9degrees. Therefore, lemon is grown in small quantities by private entrepreneurs and amateur gardeners in greenhouses, greenhouses, or in open ground in a trench way (with shelter for the winter). Most often, this citrus in Russia is found in houses, apartments, offices in pots or large tubs (depending on the variety).

Lemon groups

According to genetic and morphological characteristics, the culture is divided into four main groups, which include ordinary, sweet, rough and miscellaneous lemons.

1. Lemons, ordinary (true)
The group includes lemons having oval sour fruits, narrowed at both ends, colored light yellow. The skin is separated from the pulp with difficulty. Lemon ordinary brings high yields, resistant to heat and drought. Variety types: tall Lisbon with a dense oval crown, large fruits with a smooth shiny skin, and Eureka - with a rather rare spherical crown, medium-sized fruits covered with rough skin. Cultivation regions: Southeast and Central Asia, countries of Southern Europe, some regions of the Caucasus.

2. Sweet lemons
The group includes varieties and hybrids, the fruits of which have juicy sweet and sour pulp. The shape of sweet lemons is round, the skin color is yellow-greenish or light orange. Obtained as a result of crossing citrus crops. Growing areas: Mediterranean countries, Western Asia, Western India.

3. Rough lemons
This group includes trees with oval or pear-shaped fruits, with thick (up to 11 mm) bumpy skin. The pulp of medium juiciness has a grayish-yellow color and a sour taste. The fruits contain many seeds - up to 26 pcs. Fresh rough lemons are practically not consumed, they are often used for the production of candied fruits. The plant is excellent as a rootstock.

4. Miscellaneous lemons
The group "miscellaneous" covers interspecific hybrids having both sour and sweet and sour fruits. They can combine the properties of 2 or more varieties of citrus. There are even such plants when fruits with sour and sweet pulp are formed on the same tree. The most popular hybrid of a lemon with an orange (possibly with a tangerine) is the Meyer lemon, less known is the lemonange. As a result of crossing lemon with lime, limoname appeared, lemon with tangerine - limandarin or rangpur.

Collection and storage of fruits

Fruit ripening in a warm subtropical climate continues throughout the year. Ripe fruits do not fall off the branches, they can hang on them for several years. When growing lemon on an industrial scale, fruits are harvested at different stages of their ripeness, depending on where and how long they will be stored and where they will be transported. As a rule, lemons intended for long-term storage are removed at the beginning of the yellowing of the skin. They reach the stage of ripeness in the "bed".
Lemons are divided into botanical and commercial. The second, depending on the condition of the fruits taken from one tree, are called primafiore, bianchetti and bastardo.
Primafiore - small green strongly acid fruits from the first flowers.
Bianchetti - lemons harvested during technical ripeness, when their skin is not yet yellow, but the fruits are not considered green.
Bastardo - fruits of yellow color, which have reached full ripeness, revealing the taste and aroma characteristic of the variety.

Lemon propagation methods

Lemon is propagated by seeds, cuttings, layering, grafting. When propagated by grafts, citrus seedlings serve as rootstocks. It can be other varieties of lemon, bigaradiya (bitter orange or orange), grapefruit, orange, etc. A cultivar of lemon is used as a scion.

Growing lemon at home (indoor lemon culture)

You can grow lemon at home in any region, regardless of climate. It is only important to create the right conditions for his life, allowing the plant to perform not only decorative functions, but also bear full fruit. As mentioned above, lemon can be propagated in many ways.

When planting with seeds (stones), seedlings that have reached a height of 20 cm are transplanted into separate pots. The fruiting of such a lemon occurs in the 8th or even 15th year of life, and sometimes later. Grafted plants begin to bear fruit much earlier - 2-4 years after vaccination. Propagating lemons by cuttings, the first harvest can be harvested in the 3rd year. The method of obtaining a new plant with the help of layering in home crop production is practically not used due to labor intensity. In this case, the tree begins to bear fruit in the 2nd year.

Indoor lemon does not always need to be cross-pollinated. In height, it usually grows up to 1.5-2.0 m. Homemade lemon blooms at any time of the year (more abundant flowering occurs in spring). Buds, blooming flowers, ovaries, fruits, which ripen within 6-9 months, can simultaneously be on the plant.

Lemon cultivation in the open field. Trench and Creeping Lemon

On an industrial scale, lemon is cultivated on plantations (in open ground) in countries with a subtropical climate. In Russia, citrus is grown in limited quantities in the south of the Rostov region, in the Krasnodar Territory, in the Crimea, in some regions of the Caucasus, using a trench and creeping lemon culture.

The trench (depth 1.5 m, width up to 8 m) is a cold greenhouse, where in winter an opaque coating, such as reed mats, is used instead of ordinary glazed frames. Heat in the cold season in the building is maintained due to the heat transfer of the soil, into which manure, sand and sulfur are introduced. As necessary, the earth is loosened and moistened. Plants are planted at a distance of 1.5-3 m from each other, the branches are left rising 10-15 cm above ground level. Shoots are attached to the soil surface with hooks.

Creeping lemon culture also involves pinning the branches to the ground. Plants are covered during frost. Creeping trees under cover of burlap or mats withstand short frosts down to -12-15 degrees. For a period when the air temperature rises, the plants open.

Growing lemon in greenhouses (greenhouses), winter gardens

Lemon can be grown in greenhouses (greenhouses), winter gardens, provided that they create a climate as close as possible to the subtropics. It is necessary to correctly combine natural heat, artificial heating, ventilation and irrigation systems. Since the cost of structures and the equipment located in them is quite high, the fruits ripened in man-made subtropics are also expensive, far exceeding the price of fruits grown in open ground in natural conditions. Therefore, lemons are not grown in greenhouses on an industrial scale.

General recommendations for caring for lemon

1. Soil requirements

Lemon loves neutral or close to it (pH 5-7) sandy-loamy soil, well permeable to air and water. The soil must be enriched with a sufficient amount of minerals.

2. Watering and maintenance of air humidity

Lemon is a moisture-loving plant. When grown outdoors in dry weather, it may need up to 30-32 waterings per year. This is due to the fact that the plant has not very long roots that cannot take water from the depths of the earth.
At home, the plant is watered with settled warm water as needed in several steps, avoiding moisture stagnation in the soil. From this, the lemon is sick and may die due to the death of the roots. Insufficient soil moisture also negatively affects the development of the plant: it grows poorly, the ovaries fall off, the leaves turn yellow, there may be no flowering, etc. The key to successful lemon growth is maintaining optimal air humidity in the apartment (house, office) (60-70% ). Since it is usually much lower in residential premises with central heating, the plant must be sprayed with room temperature water at least 3 times a week, wipe the leaves with a damp cloth, and give the tree a weekly shower.

3. Temperature

Lemon is not resistant to low temperatures. Growing it in open ground, it must be borne in mind that even at -4 degrees the plant is severely damaged. When grown at home in winter, the tree feels best in a cool place at a temperature of + 14-15 degrees, in summer - + 18-24 degrees. In a greenhouse or conservatory, the permissible temperature is at least +10 degrees.

4. Lighting

On plantations, lemon trees grow well in partial shade. At home, the trees should be protected from direct sunlight to avoid leaf burns. In the summer, there is enough lighting for plants, but in the autumn-winter period, especially if the lemon is located on the north or northwest window, additional lighting will be required. It is not recommended to sharply turn the tree or rearrange it from one place to another. To avoid a one-sided crown, a pot of lemon is unfolded 1-1.5 cm weekly.

5. Top dressing

Lemon, as an evergreen crop, needs to be fed regularly. Set the timing of fertilizer application, their amount is necessary, taking into account the age of the plant and its development. Lemon needs mineral and organic fertilizers, but they cannot be applied to the soil at the same time. The main substances needed by a crop grown both in open ground and in closed ground are nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium, but nitrogen should be about 1.5-2 times more. It is important to know that an excess of fertilizer harms the lemon no less than their lack. In "overfed" plants, flowers and ovaries may fall off, they stop growing, the color of the leaves changes, the tops of the shoots dry out, etc.

6. Repotting

Repotting is required for home grown lemons. In the first years after planting a seedling (or seedling), the trees are moved annually in larger containers. After 3-4 years of life, plants can be transplanted (transshipped) after 3 years, after 7 - after 5 years or less. It is advisable not to touch large trees. It is enough to remove the top layer of the old soil (before the branching of the root system) and add a new one instead. The best time for the procedure is the end of winter or the beginning of spring.

7. Pruning

Pruning is done for sanitary purposes, to form a crown, to regulate yield. Trees grown outdoors are not always pruned. If the procedure is carried out, in the subtropics it is allowed at any time of the year. To facilitate harvesting, the lemon can be formed with a low stem. It should be borne in mind that the fruits develop on the branches of the 4th and subsequent branching orders.
At home, pruning helps to create a uniform decorative crown, which begins to form already in the first year of the plant's life. In room culture, small trees with a trunk 10-15 cm high or in the form of a bush (without a trunk) look best.

Varieties and hybrids of lemon

In total, there are about 150 varieties of citrus crops.
Lemon varieties for outdoor cultivation
Lisbon, Villa Franca, Meyer lemon varieties are widely used in the open field on an industrial scale abroad. In the Russian subtropics and on the territory of the CIS, the varieties Novogruzinsky, Tashkentsky, Yubileiny, Maikopsky, Udarnik and some others are grown.

1. Villa Franca

Bushy lemon with a dense crown, shoots with few (or no) thorns, resistant to hot weather. Fruits (about 100 g) are mostly medium-sized, oblong-oval. The peel is almost smooth, has an average thickness. The pulp is fine-grained, fragrant and juicy, painted in a light yellow color. In Central Asia, the variety is grown in a trench way.

2. Lisbon

Remontant, drought-resistant, high-yielding variety with thorny shoots begins fruiting usually 3-4 years after planting. Can tolerate short frosts. Oval fruits growing inside the crown weigh 130-160 g, have juicy yellow flesh with few or no seeds. Almost a third of the lemons sold in Russian stores are of the Lisbon variety.

3. Meyer's lemon

Remontant variety named after the American F. N. Meyer, who brought lemon from China in 1908 The culture is frost-resistant and productive. Trees have a small growth - 1.5-2 m, bear fruit for 2-3 years of life, grown from seeds - for the 4-5th. The shoots of the variety are thin, with a small number of thorns. Small rounded fruits (70-150 g) have a thin bright yellow skin. The pulp of lemons has an orange hue, slightly bitter, but pleasant taste.

4. Novogruzinsky (Novoafonsky)

In Soviet times, this remontant high-yielding variety was grown on plantations in Georgia. A tall (up to 5 m) tree has strong branches with numerous thorns. It enters fruiting at 4-5 years of age. Oval fruits weigh 120-170 g, sometimes 250 g, have juicy fragrant pulp. The skin of lemons is smooth, slightly oily, 0.5 cm thick.

5. Tashkentskiy

Remontant cultivar of Uzbek breeders usually bears fruit in the 3rd year of life, grows up to 2.5 m, has a spreading crown and small (up to 100 g) yellow-orange ovoid fruits. The skin of lemons is thin - 0.2-0.5 cm, slightly oily, easily removed, sweet and sour pulp is juicy and fragrant.

6. Yubileiny

Yubileiny lemon was obtained by Uzbek breeders on the basis of Novogruzinsky and Tashkent varieties. A remontant high-yielding lemon grows up to 3 meters, begins to bear fruit for 2-3 years of life, has heat resistance and shade tolerance, has large (400-800 g) fruits with thick, bumpy skin. The pulp is fragrant, painted in pale yellow color.

7. Drummer

The variety of Georgian selection gives high yields of rather large fruits (200 g). The tree grows up to 2.5 m, has a dense wide crown, flexible branches with small thorns. The fruits have an oval or ovoid shape, a slightly rough surface, delicate aromatic sour pulp, a peel with a slight bitterness.

8. Maikopsky

Lemon Maikopsky has been known for more than 100 years. Sometimes the plant is formed as a bush with a dense crown, consisting of flexible branches without thorns, partially hanging down and arranged horizontally. Fruits (130 g or more) are rounded, elongated, with a rough thin skin. The flesh is yellow, aromatic. A lemon can also have a different crown shape, where the branches are more vertical. Standard trees grow up to 2.0 m.

Varieties of lemon for growing at home

The decorative look of the lemon attracts many flower growers, so it is not uncommon to see this plant in apartments, houses and even offices. With proper care and vaccination, a lemon will delight not only with beautiful glossy foliage, but with flowering and fruits. There are many varieties bred specifically for growing indoors. Some of them are described below.

1. Lemon variegated Eureka

A distinctive feature of Eureka lemon is large variegated (green-white, green-yellow, green-cream) leaves and striped or spotted fruit peel, which becomes monophonic by the end of ripening. The fragrant pulp of fully ripened lemons is pink, so another name for the plant is Pink Lemonade. The height of the tree is up to 50 cm, when grown in greenhouse conditions (greenhouses), it can reach 1. 7 m. The shoots do not have thorns, the fruits with thin skin weigh about 90 g. In adulthood, the leaves of Eureka become monophonic.

2. New Year's Lemon

Remontant small plant with a compact dense crown can do without pruning. Fruiting begins at 2-3 years of age. On the shoots are thin thorns of medium length. The fruits are small, rounded, at the top there is a long nipple in the form of a trunk. The pulp of lemons is tender and juicy, fine-grained, painted in yellow-greenish color. The skin is of medium thickness, almost smooth, it is poorly separated from the pulp.

3. Willowleaf Lemon (Salicifolia)

High-yielding variety, undersized, the crown consists of partially drooping branches. The lemon got its name because of the original leaves - narrow and long, reminiscent of willow. The fruits are small or medium, pear-shaped. The skin is thick, the flesh is juicy, aromatic, not too acidic.

4. Lemon Kyiv large-fruited

Remontant variety is distinguished by large fruits - from 600 g to 1. 5 kg, and very wide rounded leaves. It can enter into fruiting already in the first year after the rooting of the cuttings. A small tree has a compact dense crown, strong prickly shoots. Lemons have the shape of a pear, a thick tuberous peel, there are a lot of seeds inside the fruit (50 or more).

5. Early ripening Yugoslav lemon

The variety is quite short, but in a heated greenhouse it can grow up to 2-3 meters. It has a dense beautiful crown, consisting of prickly strong shoots. Juicy and fragrant fruits weigh from 150 to 400 g, when fully ripe they turn orange.

6. Pavlovsky Lemon

Remontant variety, very popular with flower growers, because, unlike many other indoor lemons, it tolerates dry air and lack of light well. At home, the tree grows up to 1.5-2.0 m, has large leaves, a compact rounded crown, strong prickly shoots. The fruits are round, oblong or oval in shape, often without seeds, their weight varies from 120 to 500 g. The skin of lemons can be thin (2-3 mm) or medium thickness - 4-5 mm. The pulp has a delicate aroma, a pleasant refreshing taste.

7. Panderose lemon

When grown indoors, a lemon tree (according to one version, a hybrid of lemon and citron) usually does not exceed 1.5 m, bears fruit in the 2nd or 3rd year of life. An adult plant eventually acquires spines that are absent at a young age. Harvest in room conditions does not exceed 6 fruits per year, but they are very large - 500-700 g, sometimes more than 1.0 kg. The shape of lemons is round or pear-shaped, the skin is thick (up to 1.0 cm), bumpy. The pulp is juicy, has a light greenish color. There are many seeds in the fruits - several dozen.

8. Lunario lemon

A hybrid of lemon and an unknown citrus was obtained in the 19th century on the island of Sicily. At home, the tree grows up to 1.5 m in height, sometimes higher. An adult plant can have buds, flowers, ovaries and ripening fruits at the same time. Shoots have sharp thorns (up to 4 mm). The shape of the fruit (120-170 g), close to the branches, is oval, slightly elongated, at the end there is a well-defined nipple. The thin and smooth skin of ripe lemons is painted in a pale yellow color. The greenish-yellow pulp of the fruit is not too sour, aromatic. In fruits, most often there are no seeds or 1-2 pcs. to the fruit.

9. Lemon Rosso

Lemon-citron remontant hybrid of Italian origin. A tree from 1.5 to 2.0 m in height has a spreading crown, which requires formation in room culture. The branches are covered with numerous thorns. The crop is removed in the 2nd or 3rd year of the plant's life. Oval elongated fruits (50-160 g) have a decorative appearance due to the orange-reddish peel. The flesh is also colored orange. The fragrant skin of lemons is quite thick, hard, bumpy. The pulp is juicy, sour, but with sweet notes, often without seeds.

10. Lemon Genoa

In room culture, a tree with a spreading dense crown grows up to 1.5 m. Fruiting - 4-5 years after planting the cutting. There are no spines on the lower branches and trunk, but they are on the upper shoots. Fruits (100-120 g) are oblong-oval in shape, at the top there is a small sharp nipple. The skin of lemons (thickness 0.5-0.6 cm) is usually smooth or slightly rough, pleasant to the taste. The pulp of the fruit is tender, juicy and fragrant, painted in a greenish-yellow color. The variety is distinguished by high yields; with good care, up to 50 fruits can be harvested from an adult tree in a year.

11. New Zealand Lemon

Natural hybrid between citron and lemon. The tree can grow up to 3 m, has a dense beautiful crown, there are long thorns on the shoots. Lemon leaves are large and fragrant, just like the flowers. Fruits up to 20 cm long have an irregular cylindrical or ovoid shape with a wide nipple at the end, weigh 700-800 g, the peel is thick (0.7-1.0 cm), bumpy, poorly separated from the pulp. The color of the skin is light yellow and orange, the flesh has a gray tint, it tastes very sour, little aromatic, there are few seeds (about 4). It is good to keep the New Zealand lemon in spacious rooms as landscaping and interior decoration, as the variety has a high decorative effect. In addition, it is unpretentious and cold-resistant.

12. Canton Red Lemon

Canton Red is believed to be a natural hybrid of lemon and lime (or orange). It is considered one of the best for growing at home, tolerates dry air and low temperatures. An adult plant reaches 1.6 m in height. The crown consists of prickly shoots with a large number of leaves, fruiting with proper care is plentiful. Lemons are small in size, their weight is 40-60 g. The shape of the fruit resembles a light bulb, the skin is thin (no more than 3 mm), rough, and turns orange when fully ripe. The pulp is sour, juicy and fragrant, has the same color as the peel. There are few seeds in the fruits - 3-4 pieces.

13. Lemon Vanilla

A tree of Italian origin, the aroma of the fruits of which contains vanilla notes. Usually a lemon does not grow more than 1.7 m, there are few leaves on the shoots. The fruits are round, the peel is thin, but dense, wrinkled, painted in the usual yellow color for lemons. The pulp is light, whitish, sweet and sour, there are few seeds.

You can also grow Tashkent, Yubileiny, Lisbon, Meyer and other lemons, which were described above, indoors. In indoor culture, these varieties grow less tall than when grown outdoors.

For the successful development and fruiting of a lemon in a house, apartment or office, you need to choose the right variety, taking into account the conditions in which the plant will be located. In this case, the evergreen tree will delight with beauty and bright fruits for many years. Lemons can have a beneficial effect on the human body due to the beneficial substances (for example, phytoncides) that they secrete. There is a positive effect on the immune system, the psyche, sleep improves, pathogenic microbes are killed.

Diseases of indoor lemons

Diseases of indoor lemons not only worsen their appearance, but can lead to the death of plants. Weakened trees that do not receive sufficient care most often suffer from pathogenic organisms. Lemons can suffer from fungal, viral and infectious diseases. With good care and the creation of the conditions necessary for the normal development of citrus fruits, they rarely get sick.

Common fungal diseases

1. Black fungus
2. Various spotting of leaves
3. Anthracnosis
4. Fulfinory dew
5. Phytofto) 6. Parsha (warty)

Infectious diseases

1. Gommosis (gamepress)
2. Malseko

viral viral viral. diseases

1. Leaf mosaic
2. Cancer of citrus
3. Xylopsorosis
4. Tristeza

In addition to the above diseases, the plant may suffer from non-infectious chlorosis, which is expressed in yellowing of foliage. It arises from an insufficient amount of iron and zinc in the soil, with excessive soil moisture or, conversely, from insufficient watering. Timely elimination of the causes of the disease helps to restore health to the lemon.

Many lesions are treated by treating plants with special preparations that inhibit the development of pathogens. To prevent diseases, you can use protective fungicides, artificial or natural origin.

Diseases of outdoor lemon trees. Storage Diseases of Fruit
Outdoor lemon trees, like indoor citrus fruits, are susceptible to various diseases. They can also occur during storage of fruits.

1. Membranosis

The disease develops during storage of fruits with insufficient ventilation of the room and incorrect air temperature. Membranosis can also be triggered by adverse weather conditions when fruits ripen on trees: temperatures up to 0 degrees, dry wind and moisture fluctuations in the soil.

2. Red spotting (adustiosis)

Adustiosis appears during storage of fruits. The disease can be caused by poor ventilation of the storage, temperatures from 0 degrees and below or above +10 degrees, processing of fruits with ethylene.

3. Oleocellosis

A disease of a physiological nature affects fruits during their maturation on trees and during storage. Lemons taken in cool damp weather are especially susceptible to the disease.

4. Endoxerosis

The disease looks like black rot. The main reason for the defeat is the lack of moisture in the soil during fruit ripening.

5. Sour rot

This type of rot affects lemon fruits during storage for 3 months at a temperature of 0 to +4 degrees.

6. Peteka (deep pitting)

Occurs when fruits are supercooled both during their ripening on trees and during storage (from 0 to +4 degrees).

7. Exanthema

The disease affects branches and leaves in case of insufficient copper in the soil, as well as lemon fruits during their ripening.

8. Blue mold (penicillosis), green mold

Diseases most often appear on fruits with mechanical damage, are excited by fungi. The development of blue and green mold is facilitated by high humidity and elevated air temperature in the storage.

9. Wet white rot (sclerotinia)

A fungal disease often manifests itself on damaged fruits during storage or during their development on the tree, especially at high humidity and low air temperature.

10. Soft black rot (aspergillosis)

The disease is caused by the aerobic mold Aspergillus. Lemon fruits are affected during storage, especially at elevated air temperatures.

11. Black rot

Fungal disease is quite widespread, occurs during storage of fruits in a warehouse for a long time.

12. Dry black rot (pleosporosis)

A disease caused by fungi of the genus Pleospora can affect lemons in plantations and during storage.

13. Brown rot (phytosporosis)

A fungal disease that causes gommosis of the root collar and stem of the plant, fruit rot and leaf spot in plants. On plantations, fruits growing on the lower branches are most often susceptible to phytosporosis. Fruit can become contaminated at the packaging site, during transport and in storage.

14. Brown rot (dothiorelosis)

This type of rot is also caused by fungi and affects fruits during maturation in plantations and during storage. Brown rot develops most often at high humidity (95%) and air temperature + 25-27 degrees.

15. Diplodiasis

A fungal disease that can occur in wounds on a tree trunk, causes rotting of fruits at the ripening stage and during storage. Spreads in high humidity.

16. Gray mold (botrytis)

A characteristic sign of this disease is a gray fluffy coating. The mold is easily transmitted during transportation and storage of fruits through contact. The most favorable temperature for the reproduction of botrythiosis is + 18-25 degrees.

17. Fusarium rot

Pathogenic fungi provoke rotting of ripe lemons during 1-2 months of storage at a temperature of more than +10 degrees.

18. Melanosis

The disease is quite widespread in regions with a humid climate, where it affects the fruit directly on the tree. Fungal spores can also cause melanosis when stored in a warehouse.

19. Bacterial necrosis

The disease first affects young shoots, then spreads to fruits, affecting only the skin. Mass distribution on plantations occurs due to a combination of several factors, which include mechanical damage, low air temperature (+15-18 degrees), a large amount of precipitation, and wind.
Lemon trees can also be affected by cancer, which affects both shoots and fruits, various blotches, diseases provoked by mycoplasma (stubborn).

20. Damage to fruits due to improper storage

In storage, lemons can be damaged by hypothermia. For example, keeping fruits at temperatures from 0 to +4 degrees for several months can cause the decay of fruit tissues, their skin becomes like a sponge, the flesh becomes watery, and there is bitterness in the taste. At room temperature, these lemons give off a fermented smell.
Proper care of citrus crops, timely removal of damaged parts of the plant and, if necessary, uprooting of diseased trees can reduce the risk of diseases.

A number of necessary measures help to combat diseases that damage fruits after harvesting: careful transportation and packaging of lemons, disinfection of storage facilities, and maintenance of optimal keeping conditions.

Lemon pests and their control

Lemon has quite a lot of pests that can damage all parts of the plant, including the root system. As a result, the yield is significantly reduced, which is very important when cultivating lemon on an industrial scale. In room conditions, trees that perform a decorative function, when damaged by insects (or microscopic animals), lose their attractiveness. Sometimes pests lead to the death of plants. In addition, they carry infections and fungal spores that cause disease.

Scale insects and false scale insects are considered especially dangerous insects. Lemon trees suffer from them on plantations, in lemonaria (greenhouses), as well as when grown indoors. When cultivated in open ground, lemon is often affected by two types of mites: silver and red, nematodes - small worms (from 1 to 2 mm) living in the soil, citrus leaf miners, fruit flies. In greenhouses, apartments (houses), offices, lemon can be attacked by citrus whiteflies, aphids, mealybugs, thrips, greenhouse spider mites, soil midges (sciarids), springtails, etc.

For prevention, it is useful to wash houseplants weekly under a warm shower, spray them with soapy water, infusions of herbs, garlic, hot pepper. When pests are found, especially in large numbers, it is advisable to use insecticides or acaricides (according to the instructions).

In greenhouses, winter gardens, it is necessary to carry out preventive measures and apply measures aimed at the destruction of pests when they appear. This is a constant inspection of plants, airing greenhouses, coating walls, concrete racks with lime mortar, washing coatings with diluted soda ash or a solution of washing powder, disinfecting the soil (once every six months), fumigating with tobacco dust, washing tree crowns with water, if necessary, spraying plants with appropriate preparations - insecticides or acaricides. In large greenhouses, you can use the method of breeding beneficial insects that eat pests.

When growing lemon in open ground on plantations, mechanical, biological, chemical methods are used to control insects and microscopic animals (for example, mites). Since the fruits on the trees do not ripen at the same time, the use of "chemistry" is very problematic due to the threat to human health, as well as the damage to the environment.


Learn more