How much sun does a meyer lemon tree need
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
- 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
|Appearance||Glossy green leaves, white blossoms, yellow-orange fruits|
|Height||6-10 feet tall, with dwarf variety of 5-7 feet tall|
|Type of tree||Fruit|
|Sunlight requirements||8-12 hours of direct sunlight per day|
|Soil composition||5. 5-6.5 pH level|
|Lifespan||Up 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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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7 Secrets for Tons of Fruit – FastGrowingTrees.com
When it comes to home-grown citrus trees, there's nothing like the Meyer Lemon. A cross between the tart lemon and the sweeter orange, Meyer Lemons are sweeter and juicier than their more common counterparts - making them sought-after in both grocery stores and home gardens alike.
The Meyer Lemon Tree is a fun tree that always seems to be blooming or fruiting. Many Meyer Lemon Trees are blooming now, bringing beautiful flowers and a wonderfully fresh citrus scent to homes. What’s a better way to prepare for spring cleaning than with an all-natural lemon scent?The Secrets of Meyer Lemon Trees
Like with all citrus trees, Meyer Lemon blooms turn into fruit, so if you don’t have blooms, life won’t give you lemons. So, how exactly do you get these blooms? Make your tree comfortable. Under the proper care conditions, your citrus tree will have a ton of blossoms!
Before fruiting, Meyer Lemon Trees need to see the light! They won’t flower without getting enough light. Make sure your trees get at least 6 hours of direct sunlight a day. You can do this by placing your tree by a large, sunny window. If you can, try to place your tree near an area that faces South. Southern-facing areas tend to get more light.
Also, if your tree is potted in a container and kept indoors, rotate it every three weeks. This way, the entire tree gets time in the sunshine!
Next, make sure that your trees get the right amount of water. Overwatering or under-watering your tree can harm fruit production. Let your Meyer Lemon dry out a little in between waterings, but it should never be completely dry - they'll grow best when the soil stays moist.
Check on your soil once a week. If it feels dry to the touch 2 inches below the surface, it’s time for more water. Slowly pour water into the pot and count to 20, or wait until you see water running out of the bottom of the pot.
Generally, Meyer Lemon Trees need water every one to two weeks. Leaves can be an indicator as to how your tree feels. If the leaves are drooping like they’re too heavy for the branches, the tree is getting too much water. If the leaves are crispy and dry or curl upwards, this is a sign of under-watering.
Don’t immediately overcorrect under-watering. Gradually add more water to your tree over time. If you immediately saturate the roots with a ton of water, your tree may become stressed.
Another way to keep your tree healthy and productive? Make sure that it gets all of its vitamin and minerals. When potting or planting your tree, it’s beneficial to mix in some citrus planting mix with your natural soil.
Also, to give your tree an extra boost, give it some fertilizer designed for citrus trees! Give your tree two tablespoons of fertilizer three to four times per year. Fertilize once in the early spring, once in early summer, then again in the late summer and in the fall. Space out your fertilizing by about four to six weeks.
Meyer Lemon Trees are very cold hardy and can withstand temperatures down to about 20 degrees. If your area gets colder than that, your tree will need to be planted in a container and brought inside when the temperature drops.
But when they’re inside, winter heat can dry them out. Be careful not to place them under a vent. If your leaves start to dry, you can mist them daily with a spray bottle for extra humidity.
Once it warms up, don’t just stick your tree out in the hot sun for hours! It will need time to adjust to the heat. Move your tree outside for a few hours each day, gradually increasing the amount of time it spends outdoors, before letting it live outside all summer.
Once the blooms open on your tree, they’ll need to be pollinated. Good thing that these trees are self-pollinating! However, having two or more trees will greatly increase the amount of pollinated blooms.
Meyer Lemon Trees can bloom all year, but they have two main blooming times: fall and early spring. If they bloom while it’s too cold for them to be outside, simply keep your tree indoors. However, when placed indoors, they won’t have the wind and bees to carry their pollen from bloom to bloom for them. You could release a few bees inside of your home to help with pollination, but we wouldn’t recommend it!
However, you can pollinate your indoor trees by hand. Simply take a small, dry paintbrush, and run it over each bloom as if you’re painting them. Do this once daily, and don’t wash the paintbrush until after the blooms have been pollinated.
Another way to keep your Meyer Lemon Tree happy is by pruning it. Meyer Lemon Trees don’t have to be tall to produce fruit – just healthy. Keep them wide and branched out. When you decide to prune your trees in the early fall or early spring, look for branches that are growing straight upwards. Generally, these aren’t fruit-producing branches. Also, remove any damaged or crossing branches. Make your cuts at 45-degree angles facing upwards to promote new growth.
Also, look for areas that block the sunlight from the center of the tree. Removing these branches will increase air circulation and the amount of sunlight that hits these branches, which will decrease your tree’s risk of mold and fungi.
Be sure to look at the number of lemons you have growing. In order to prevent fruit overbearing, when your tree starts to fruit, you’ll want to remove a few lemons in large clusters when they’re pea sized. This will promote the growth of larger lemons when they reach maturity.
7. Patience is a Virtue
Your Meyer Lemon Tree will need time to get adjusted to its new environment before it starts producing fruit. Once your lemons start to grow, give them time to mature. They can take around six months to mature. Don’t harvest them until their skin changes from green to dark yellow. When your sweet Meyer Lemons are ready, their skin will be a shade of yellow that’s similar to the color of an egg yolk.
Meyer Lemon FAQs
What is an improved Meyer Lemon Tree?An "improved" Meyer Lemon Tree is a specific cultivar that was bred to be more resistant to disease than traditional Meyer Lemons. That means they are easier to grow, with less maintenance required - particularly for home gardeners.
Do you need two Meyer lemon trees to produce fruit?You don't need two Meyer Lemons to produce fruit - since they are self-fertile, a single tree will produce lemons. However, having multiple trees can increase pollination and lead to larger harvests.
What is the best potting soil for Meyer Lemon Trees?Meyer Lemon Trees will grow best in soil that is nutrient-rich and well-draining. All-purpose potting soil typically works well, or you can add in a potting mix designed for citrus trees, which will help with drainage.
How long does it take for Meyer Lemon Trees to produce fruit?It all depends on the age of your Meyer Lemon Tree. If you purchase a more mature tree, you could get fruit as soon as the very first growing season. If you buy a younger, less mature tree, you can expect it to bear fruit within a few years.
Blair is the Content Marketing Manager at FastGrowingTrees.com, and though she's not your traditional gardener, the planting world is definitely growing on her (pun intended!). She's enjoyed digging into plant care and maintenance and growing her plant collection, especially with exotic indoor varieties.
home care, variety description
Lemons in apartments on windowsills are no longer considered a rarity, but in order to grow this exotic fruit, you need to know all the features of care. It is also very important for to choose the right variety , which will delight not only with its appearance, but also with tasty and juicy fruits. In this article, let's get acquainted with the Meyer lemon.
Table of contents
- Meyer homemade lemon characteristics
- Distines and disadvantages
- Features of top dressing
- Landing Rules
- Care for lemon tree
- Temperature regime
- 9001 Diseases and pests
Characteristics of domestic Meyer lemon
It is believed that Meyer lemon or Chinese lemon is a hybrid of orange and lemon , created not in scientific laboratories, but by nature itself. This variety was discovered by the American Frank Mayer, who brought it from China to America in 1908.Meyer Indoor Lemon
The Chinese lemon is the smallest among the representatives of this culture and that is why it is often grown at home. The variety is characterized by good frost resistance and productivity , well tolerates not the most favorable climatic conditions.
Maximum tree height up to 1.5 meters , oval-shaped leaves, rich green color with a characteristic sheen. The variety is remontant, that is, it blooms and bears fruit all year round and several crops with a total weight of 2-3 kilograms can be harvested in one season. The first fruits can only be harvested at the age of 2-3 years of the tree . The highest peak of flowering is observed in the spring, when white flowers are formed, collected in clusters of 6-8 pieces.
The amount of yield obtained directly depends on the quality of plant care.
From the moment of formation of the ovary to the full ripening of the fruit, 8-9 months pass. Lemons of regular rounded shape can weigh from 70 to 150 grams , the skin is thin, bright yellow. The pulp is orange, sour with a slight bitterness, many tasters rate this taste as noble.
Advantages and disadvantages
- Mayer's lemon is not afraid of cold temperatures and can grow in almost any climatic conditions;
- The tree itself has an excellent decorative look and can become a decoration in any room;
- The fruits are very beautiful and at the same time delicious , which cannot but please flower growers;
- Flowering and fruiting is continuous , so with proper care, you can harvest several crops per season.
- In addition to all the advantages, the Chinese lemon has disadvantages, such as the need for constant and high-quality care , in the absence of which the tree can quickly get sick and die;
- There is also a high risk of various pests ;
- Fruit not suitable for long storage and transport over long distances.
Feeding considerationsMayer lemon should be fed during flowering and fruiting
The plant especially needs to be fed during the growing season. For this, experienced flower growers recommend once every 2 weeks from the beginning of spring to the end of autumn (while the lemon is actively blooming and bearing fruit) apply complex mineral fertilizers containing nitrogen, potassium or phosphorus.
However, there is a little trick that can be followed to improve the effectiveness of mineral fertilizers. To do this, once every 2-3 months, the soil is watered with a solution of boron, molybdenum, copper, zinc, manganese or iron.
Feeding must be stopped during the winter.
Ornamental plants are usually sold already in pots, but in order to create more comfortable conditions for it, it is necessary to transplant a lemon, while adhering to some rules.
For young plants, the following potting mix is good:
- one part leafy soil;
- one part sand;
- one part of humus;
- two pieces of sod land.
For older lemons, the composition of the soil changes slightly:
- one part of leaf soil;
- one part sand;
- one part of humus;
- one part clay;
- three pieces of sod land.
Neutral acidity is preferred. When planting, you need to monitor the position of the root neck, it should be flush with the ground.The root neck of the Meyer lemon should be flush with the ground
Until the lemon tree has grown to 5 years of age, it must be replanted annually , while renewing the soil and increasing the size of the previous pot by 4-5 centimeters. As soon as the plant becomes more mature, transplants are carried out once every three years, completely changing the soil mixture and, if necessary, replacing the pot.
In no case should a small plant be planted in a large container, in which case there is a great risk of root rot.
Caring for a lemon tree
In order for a tree to grow strong and healthy , it must be properly cared for , while creating the most comfortable living conditions, close to the region of natural growth of such a plant. Quality care consists of several points.
In order for the plant to fully bear fruit, it must be provided with intense sunlight throughout the year. The best option would be to create a 12-hour day , in such conditions the tree actively grows foliage, but if the number of light hours decreases, then there will be a risk that the lemon will drop all the green mass and simply die.
Flower growers recommend placing a pot with a plant on a western or eastern window sill, while artificial lighting is required in winter.
Meyer lemon does not tolerate drafts and sudden temperature changes very well, therefore do not recommend taking the plant to an unglazed and unheated balcony or to the street.Meyer lemons are adversely affected by drafts and temperature fluctuations
In summer it is important to avoid overheating, therefore, in intense sunlight and a lot of heat, it is best to slightly shade the tree so that it receives the right amount of light, but does not burn from high temperatures. The ideal indicator is 20 degrees Celsius .
In winter, it is necessary to maintain the dormant state of the lemon tree, for this the pot is moved as far as possible from the batteries, trying to provide the plant with a comfortable temperature no higher than 12 degrees.
For a comfortable existence of plants, it is recommended to maintain indoor humidity at 70 percent.
Lemon trees should be watered both root and foliar. At the same time moistening the soil and spraying the foliage with a spray bottle. In spring and summer, the procedure is repeated in the morning and in the evening every day, in the autumn and winter, the frequency of watering is reduced to 2 times a week.
The soil ball must always be moist, drying out can lead to the death of the plant.
To form a beautiful crown of a tree, you need to take care of its pruning in advance, for this you need :
- The stem of the seedling that has grown is shortened to a length of 20 centimeters , while leaving several developed buds in the upper part;
- The shoots grown from the remaining buds will become skeletal branches , 3-4 of them are the most healthy, and the rest are cut off;
- Skeletal branches cut to 25 centimeters ;
- Second order shoots must not exceed 10 centimeters;
- Third order - more than 5 centimeters.
As soon as the 4th order shoots appear, the formation of the tree crown is considered complete . Now, every year in the spring, sanitary pruning is carried out, removing all diseased, yellowed, dried or damaged leaves.
Meyer lemon can be propagated by seed or cuttings . It is worth noting that with the help of cuttings, you can get a good, varietal tree, and when growing a tree from a seed, there is a high risk of wild game.
- , seeds are extracted from the fruits, washed thoroughly and dried on the windowsill;
- then moisten gauze in water , put seeds on it and put such a design in a box, while constantly maintaining the moisture content of the fabric;
- as soon as the first sprouts appear, the seeds are transplanted into the soil adapted for young plants, while the seeds are deepened by 3-4 centimeters;
- seedlings watered once every two days;
- as soon as the height of the tree reaches 15 centimeters, it is transplanted into a large container .
As soon as the thickness of the trunk is more than 8 millimeters, it is recommended to graft by any of the known methods.
- cuttings with 4-5 leaves are placed in a weak solution of manganese for 20 hours;
- then with a crushed angle, an oblique cut is processed, all castings are removed , leaving only 3 top ones;
- at the bottom of the pot spread drainage , then the soil mixture, sand on top, into which the plant is deepened by 2-3 centimeters;
- at the next stage I cover the pot with a glass jar or plastic bag;
- for the best rooting, the structure is placed in a place with diffused light and regularly moisten the soil;
- after 2-3 weeks the shelter is slowly removed , first for 2 hours, then this time is increased. Such manipulation is necessary so that the lemon can adapt to environmental conditions.
This method of propagation will help to achieve the earliest fruiting of the plant.
Diseases and pests
Improper care can cause some diseases, which can be identified by the presence of the following signs :
- If the leaves turn lighter , this means that the tree lacks nutrients or light;
- If the leaves begin to wither and fall off , then the matter is a lack of moisture and you should immediately start watering and spraying the plant.
Lemons are also often attacked by various pests .
- When the spider mite settles on the plant, it begins to build webs and at the first detection of such a sign, the tree is washed under running water from the shower;
- If black dots-turtles appear on the leaves, these are scale insects , which a mixture of 50 milliliters of kerosene and 100 milliliters of liquid soap will help get rid of.
- Meyer lemon damaged by spider mites
- Meyer's lemon damaged by scab
For the prevention of pests twice a year, the plant is sprayed with a solution of 2 grams of karbofos, 2 grams of celtan and a liter of water.
Mayer's Lemon is excellent for growing indoors as an ornamental variety which also produces excellent tasting fruits. Initially, it may seem that caring for such a plant is very difficult, but if you follow all the instructions correctly, you can get a good harvest and no diseases and pests will be terrible.
Room lemon - care and cultivation. Maintenance in summer
Lemon or lemon tree is a hybrid plant. Homeland - India, China and the Pacific tropical islands.
- Family: Roots
- Subfamily: Citrus
- Genus: Citrus
- Species: Lemon
For cultivation in container culture, dwarf varieties are used: Ponderosa (aka Skiernevitsky), Genoa, Lisbon, Lunario, Maikopsky, Meyer (Chinese dwarf), Novogruzinsky, Kyiv, etc.
- Direct sunlight from October to March.
- In the period from April to September - until 12-00 and after 15-00 direct sunlight, from 12-00 to 15-00 scattered (up to 40%) sunlight. Scattering is created artificially using a special mesh, or we use natural.
If the ambient temperature is below 30°C, then the plant can be illuminated during the whole daylight hours with direct sunlight.
Decreased light reduces the likelihood of flowering. The plant should receive at least 6 hours of direct sunlight (optimally 8 hours). Necessary, to ensure vegetative growth, the duration of daylight hours is at least 12 hours.
To form a bush of the correct shape (at room conditions), the plant is rotated about a quarter of a turn every week.
The optimum temperature during the growing season is + (18-25)°С.
Minimum short-term temperature + 4°C. Negative temperatures are unacceptable for keeping potted lemons.
Minimum average temperature +(8-12)°С.
The optimum winter temperature is +(12-15)°C.
Frequency of watering - with a slight drying of the earthen ball between waterings.
Reduced water intake from the soil occurs in winter, in cold cloudy weather, immediately after plant transplantation, or if the plant is sick.
Lemon water consumption increases at high air temperatures and during the growing season.
Regardless of this, the frequency of watering must be observed constantly - see the section of this site "IRRIGATION".
It is advisable to water the lemon with rainwater, previously settled and warmed up to room temperature. If you only have tap water available, then it is advisable to acidify it by adding 2 g of citric acid per 10 liters (in most cases, tap water alkalizes the soil).
The ideal air humidity is around 50%. In hot weather and under conditions of central heating, air humidity drops sharply. If the leaves show signs of stress, moisture can be increased by spraying or by placing a pot of lemon on a tray of wet gravel.
During the growing season, top dressing is carried out with a balanced fertilizer with a high nitrogen content (N-P-K=2-1-1) - fertilizer for citrus plants. It is preferable to use mineral slow-release or organic fertilizers.
In practice, I use dry, rotted chicken manure to feed lemons. Fertilizer spread on the surface of the soil. In order not to spoil the appearance of the composition, the litter can be sprinkled with soil.
Plants without fruits are fertilized no more than four times a year, and should not be fertilized during the cool season when they are not in active growth.
Nutrient deficiency is one of the reasons for premature fruit drop. For the same reason, lemon leaves turn yellow prematurely and fall off.
- during the growing season - once a week;
- in the autumn-winter period - 1 time in 3 weeks.
When feeding, it is easier to use complex mineral fertilizers for citrus fruits. If conditions allow, then you can use factory-made organic fertilizers or prepare your own mullein infusion.
During the growing season, to compensate for the deficiency of microelements, once a month carry out foliar feeding of the plant. At the same time, use special fertilizers for foliar top dressing or cook it yourself (see the section of the site "FOLK FEEDING").
Keeping lemon outdoors in summer
In the spring-summer and autumn seasons, it is useful to keep potted lemon outdoors.
There are certain rules for this activity:
- The lemon is taken outside after the danger of frost has passed. Accordingly, before the onset of frost, the plant must be brought indoors.
- The period of adaptation of the plant to the sharply increased sunlight (2-3 weeks) is necessary. For this, direct sunlight is allowed until 10-00 and after 15-00.