How to take care of kumquat tree
Kumquat Tree Care: How to Grow Kumquats
Table of Contents
Kumquat tree, also known as Citrus japonica, is an easy-to-grow fruit tree. From all the citrus trees, this one is the most beautiful with dark-green, glossy leaves. It’s known for its bright orange fruits, which are deliciously tart and sweet.
These trees, native to eastern Asia, are relatively small and beautiful. If you’re looking to grow them in your backyard, you’ll need to know all the care tips! Keep reading for tons of info.
Good Products At Amazon For Growing Kumquats:
- Garden Safe Neem Oil Extract
- Bonide All-Seasons Horticultural & Dormant Oil
- Safer Brand Insect Killing Soap
- Monterey Liqui-Cop Copper Fungicide
Quick Care Guide
|Common Name(s)||Kumquat, nagami kumquat|
|Scientific Name||Citrus japonica|
|Germination Time||2-4 weeks|
|Days to Harvest||~90 days for fruits to form|
|Soil||Sandy loam slight clay|
|Pests||Citrus pests, mealybug, aphids|
|Diseases||Armillaria root rot, anthracnose, citrus blast|
Kumquat plants have thornless branches and extremely glossy leaves. They bear dainty white flowers that occur in clusters or individually inside the leaf axils. The plants can reach a height of up to 8 feet and grow 6 feet wide. They bear yellowish-orange fruits that are oval or round in shape. The fruits can be 1″ in diameter and have a sweet, pulpy skin and slightly acidic inner pulp.
Despite being citrus trees, the flowering season of kumquats arrives much later. Kumquat tree flowers in late spring into early summer. It is an easy-to-care, cold-hardy plant that can tolerate temperatures as low as 18°F (-7°C).
Kumquat VarietiesMassive harvest of kumquat fruits from a small section of one tree.
Botanically, many of the varieties of kumquats are classified as their own species, rather than a cultivar:
- Nagami: The most popular variety, also known as oval kumquat.
- Meiwa: Large round kumquat, a hybrid of ‘Nagami’ and ‘Marumi’.
- Marumi: Round kumquat, a bit spicier in flavor than ‘Nagami’.
- Hong Kong: A native version, often growing in hilly or mountain regions of China.
Whichever you choose, kumquat trees produce fruit that is are round, oval-shaped, and bell-shaped. Nagami kumquats, which are the most popular, have oblong, juicy fruits, which can be eaten whole or used to make marmalades.
All the kumquat trees are self-pollinating, so you only need to grow one tree. The plants require moist soil, so they need ample water to prevent drying of roots. Kumquats can tolerate both frigid and hot temperatures.
Planting a Kumquat Tree
Growing a kumquat tree is very easy. Here’s a breakdown of when, where, and how to plant this attractive evergreen tree.
When to Plant
You can successfully start a new kumquat plant by planting the seed in spring. Spring is the ideal time for kumquats as the temperature is pleasant with higher chances of rain and, of course, lots of sunshine. Early spring is also the best time to transplant a sapling kumquat.
Where to Plant
Plant in a place where there’s full sun. You can plant them in your backyard or outside on your patio as long as they get well-drained soil. They also do well in pots or containers with suitable drainage holes, but will grow much better if directly planted in the ground. If you must grow them in a container, try an Air Pot, which is expertly-designed to cultivate a healthy root structure. Choose a location where your tree is protected from high wind conditions if possible.
How to Plant
It’s better to purchase a kumquat tree from a local nursery. Kumquat can sprout from seed, but the plant is mostly weak. Choose a sunny spot and plant the tree in spring to ensure that the kumquat is well-established before winter arrives.
After choosing the spot, dig a hole at least 3-5 times wider than the root ball. Carefully place the tree into the hall and ensure that the soil is level with the ground. Tap down the soil for a smooth layer.
Since kumquats need regular hydration, water the plant thoroughly and don’t let the soil become dry. Mist often, at least a few times a week, until the tree establishes.
Add organic mulch to the surrounding area, about 2-3 inches, while keeping the mulch at least 10 inches from the trunk.
Ensure proper watering and soil conditions for about a month and then fertilize. You can use a high-quality citrus formula.
Kumquat Tree CareA kumquat tree full of fruit I harvested from this past summer.
Kumquat tree, particularly the variety known as nagami kumquat, is relatively easy to grow. However, like other citrus trees, it can’t survive on neglect. When you’re planting the tree, it’s essential to treat it with a lot of care. The journey is extremely rewarding once the kumquat tree begins to bear delicious citrus fruit. Here’s a breakdown of how to nurture and look after it.
Sun and Temperature
As mentioned earlier, kumquats are best grown in full sun. They need at least 6-7 hours of sunlight every day for healthy root development, and 8-10 is better. If you’re growing them indoors, make sure to keep them near a window for maximum sunlight, or provide a grow light to keep them healthy.
Kumquats do well in USDA hardy zones 9 and 10 and can survive in temperatures as low as 18 degrees F (-7 degrees C). If temperatures drop lower, bring them inside.
The key to growing any citrus fruit tree is proper watering. If you’re growing kumquats in pots, the soil needs to be moist but not wet. For this, you must ensure the container has suitable drainage holes and that the soil itself drains excess water away.
Kumquats need regular watering, especially when the plants are young – you’ll often water 2-3 times a week throughout the first year. However, make sure not to overdo it for older trees.
To check for hydration, stick your finger at least 3-4 inches in the soil; if you feel dampness, wait until the soil dries out a little to water again. However, if it’s dry, water the tree until water begins to run out from the bottom of the pot. Trees planted directly in the soil should be watered until the soil’s moist, but not muddy. A soaker hose can help.
Kumquat tree survives well in almost any soil pH. But it can’t survive really sticky, clay-like soils that don’t drain readily. Ensure your soil easily drains away water. If you’re growing in a container, a citrus potting blend is great. Those growing directly in the ground should do a drainage test first.
To do a drainage test, dig a hole at least a foot deep, and fill it with water. If it empties out within about 20 minutes, your soil’s perfect. If the water stays in the hole for over an hour, it may be best to work through some compost or other drainage aid. Even a small amount of sand can improve drainage, but perlite is another good option.
Apart from the cold winter months, kumquat plants need regular fertilizer. In spring, feed the plant with an all-purpose, slow-release citrus fertilizer. As the plant grows, give it diluted liquid fertilizer, like fish emulsion or liquid kelp on an occasional basis. Always water well before applying liquid fertilizers. Avoid getting fertilizer on the tree itself, only on the soil.
Kumquat tree doesn’t require much pruning except when you have to remove dead or damaged branches that may be sucking up the tree’s resources. If you want to shape the tree, make sure to do so before the flowering season in spring and after harvesting the fruit.
An occasional pruning to open up the canopy can allow more light and airflow into the upper part of the tree. This helps with future flowering and reduces the chance of diseases taking hold.
Propagating Kumquat Trees
The trees aren’t generally grown from seeds, although they can be. The tricky part about seeds is that you won’t necessarily get an exact clone of their parent plant. If you’re trying to raise a particular cultivar, it’s best to go with another method.
Propagate instead by grafting young branches onto the rootstocks of grapefruits and oranges. The root systems of most grapefruit and orange trees are typically more resilient to fungal diseases in the soil.
When growing kumquat trees in containers repot every 2-3 years in containers that are at least a few inches bigger than the previous one. The ideal time for repotting is the early part of the leaf-growing stage in spring.
Harvesting and Storing
Here’s how you should harvest and store the fruit from kumquat trees.
The harvesting time for most varieties begins from November through January, while for others, it’s from December to April. The fruit is ripe when it’s slightly soft and deep orange. Pick the fruit using scissors or pruning snips to avoid damaging the plant. You can also trim the fruit along with a small piece of the branch.
Kumquat fruits don’t have a long shelf life because they have thin, delicate peels. If you want to store them for a week or so, keep them in fully covered paper bags or plastic bags at room temperature. However, it’s best to store the fruit in the fridge.
Even when kumquat trees require lots of care, gardeners don’t face many growing problems.
After extreme freezing conditions, your kumquat may experience loss of leaves. While they’re hardy down to about 20 degrees Fahrenheit, colder conditions can cause this to happen. Try to keep your tree protected from excess cold whenever possible. Drastic changes in light can also cause leaf drop.
Container-grown kumquats can experience twig dieback and loss of leaves if they become rootbound. Try to prevent this problem by ensuring that the pot’s large enough to satisfy your tree’s needs.
Kumquat trees are susceptible to mealybug infestations, leaf miners, citrus scale, and aphids. Keep the soil well-drained and avoid excess moisture and piling too much mulch around the tree. A good insecticidal soap or a robust horticultural oil or neem oil will help combat the infestation.
Anthracnose is a common citrus disease. This leaf spot disease can be prevented by spraying the tree three times annually with horticultural oil. If it appears, most copper-based fungicides will clear it up. You may also encounter alternaria leaf spots, and those should be handled similarly to anthracnose.
Citrus blast is a bacterial infection that spreads in parts of the US after wind-driven rain. The bacteria, Pseudomonas syringae, enters into the plant via points of damage from the wind. It causes withering of leaves and can lead to complete death of the plant. Plant your citrus trees with protection from wind, and use a copper-based fungicide to kill off bacteria.
Phytophthora root rot is another issue that may appear. This is usually a fungally-based root rot that is caused by overly-soggy soil conditions. Do not overwater your trees, and you should not encounter this problem.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Where do kumquats grow in the USA?
Kumquat trees are most often grown in Florida and California.
Q. What are the benefits of eating kumquat fruits?
Kumquat fruits are incredibly high in vitamin C and fiber. Eating them can help strengthen the immune system and support weight loss.
Complete Guide To Kumquat Tree Care
The kumquat tree is a small evergreen shrub that produces small sweet and tart citrus fruits. Kumquats, also known as cumquat, have thin skin which is sweet while the flesh of the fruit is sour. Eating a kumquat fruit whole, skin and all, the flavor is an exciting explosion on your taste buds! Learn how to grow kumquats with our guide to kumquat tree care.
Kumquats are grown as both an ornamental tree and a food-producing tree. The fruit can remain on the tree for an extended time making them attractive trees in the garden. While dwarf varieties are ideal for growing in pots or containers so in cooler climates they can be moved indoors during the winter.
Kumquat Tree Care
Kumquat trees (botanical genus Fortunella) are hardy trees once established. They are known to be drought and cold-tolerant as well as pests and disease resistant. They tick all the right boxes for a fruit-producing tree to grow at home. So let’s learn more about the kumquat trees ideal growing conditions and how best to care for them.My Backyard Kumquat Tree – this one is a Nagami Kumquat Tree
Climate: Where Do Kumquats Grow
Kumquat trees prefer a warm climate though they are cold hardy to 18°F (-7°C). The warmer the climate, the sweeter the fruit will be. They can also grow in temperatures that reach 100+°F (38+°C).
In the US kumquat trees can be grown in zones 8b-11 in the ground, otherwise, they do best grown in warm temperate and subtropical climates.
Soil Requirements for Growing Kumquat Trees
Kumquat trees will grow in many soil conditions but they do prefer a neutral soil pH.
Good soil drainage is important to ensure the roots do not rot. So while many soil conditions will be adequate, heavy clay soil will be problematic. Consider a raised garden bed or large pot with good drainage holes instead.
Sun Requirements for Growing Kumquats
Full sun is important for a healthy kumquat tree. Find a position in the garden where the kumquat tree will receive full sun for 6-8 hours or more a day. They also prefer a position with protection from the wind.
Water for Growing Kumquats
A newly planted kumquat tree needs more regular water. Depending on your climate, every second or third day for the first couple of weeks will help ensure the tree establishes itself.
Once the kumquat is established, watering can be reduced to twice a week in summer and once a week in winter. Again this will be dependant on the climate. With regular rainfall, kumquats may not require any additional water.
A good rule of thumb is to allow the top 2-3 inches of soil to dry out before watering again.
Kumquat trees grown in pots or containers will require more regular watering as they will dry out quicker than trees grown in the ground.
Growth Habit of Kumquat Trees
Kumquat trees can grow 6-16 ft high (2-5 meters) though they can be pruned to remain a smaller shrub size tree at 6 ft (2 meters). They can grow 6 ft (2 meters) wide.
Pollination of Kumquat Trees
Kumquat trees are self-fertile. You only need one tree to produce loads of delicious fruit.
If you are growing kumquat tree indoors you will need to hand pollinate the flowers as there will be no insects to do the job for you. This can be done easily with a small paintbrush. Gently brush around the flower and move onto the next flower and do the same. Continue for all the flowers on a daily basis during flowering.
Pruning Kumquat Trees
The best time to prune a kumquat tree is after fruiting although it can be done at any time outside of winter.
After fruiting is a good time to check for dead branches and remove them, prune off any suckers growing from the base, remove any crossing branches as well as remove a few branches on top to allow more light into the canopy.
Otherwise, pruning is only required if you would like to maintain a smaller size and to shape the tree.
6 Steps To Planting A Kumquat Tree
Step 1. Dig a hole twice the width of the kumquat tree container and slightly deeper than the container. The planting hole can be filled with some homemade compost, but not fertilizer as fertilizer can burn the kumquat trees sensitive roots.
Step 2. Next, remove the kumquat from the pot and very gently tease out the bottom roots.
Step 3. Then place the kumquat tree in the hole, ensuring it is planted in the ground to the same level as it was in its pot. This is important because burying the trunk any deeper can cause the kumquat to root.
Step 4. Next, fill the hole around the kumquat with soil and gently but firmly pat it down.
Step 5. Now it’s time to water the kumquat tree. Watering will help to settle the roots in the soil.
Step 6. Finally use an organic mulch with a cover of 1-2inches (3-5cm) thick. Mulching will help retain moisture and protect the soil. It is important to leave a small gap around the trunk to ensure the mulch does not touch the trunk of the kumquat tree which could otherwise cause the tree to rot.
Fertilizing Kumquat Trees
Like all citrus trees, kumquats require regular fertilization to keep them happy. Aim to feed them 3 times a year with a citrus fertilizer. The addition of compost and mulching with an organic mulch will also contribute to feeding the plant and protecting the soil. Remember to keep mulch from directly touching the trunk of the tree.
Varieties: Types Of Kumquat TreesNagami Kumquat Tree Fruit
There are four more commonly known and grown kumquat varieties with Meiwa and Nagami being the most popular varieties grown in the US. While there are also many hybrid varieties grown throughout the world.
Meiwa Kumquat Tree – Meiwa kumquats are a small round fruit with thin skin. The fruit can be eaten whole and fresh from the tree. This is a hybrid of Marumi and Nagami. The fruit is sweet with both the skin and flesh tasting sweet and is commonly known as the sweet kumquat. The Meiwa
Nagami Kumquat Tree – The Nagami kumquat produces small oval-shaped citrus fruit which can stay on the tree for an extended period of time. This adds to the attractiveness of the tree and its ornamental appeal. The tree can grow 6.5-16.5 ft (2-5 meters) though it can be pruned to remain a smaller tree at 6.5 ft (2 meters). Nagami kumquat is a favorite variety for many home gardeners and the variety of kumquat I grow at home.
Hong Kong Kumquat Tree – native kumquat grown in China.
Marumi Kumquat Tree – The Marumi is similar to Nagami though it has round fruit with thinner and sweeter skin.
Hybrid varieties include various variegated types, Fukushu, Eustis Limequats, Indio Mandarinquats and Calamondin also known as Calamansi.
When Does A Kumquat Fruit?
Depending on the variety, harvest time for kumquat fruit is winter through early spring.
Flowering occurs in summer, followed by fruit set in autumn and ripening in winter.
How Long Does It Take A Kumquat Tree To Produce Fruit?
Generally, you can expect a kumquat tree to produce fruit in 2-3 years. Many trees purchased from nurseries are already 2-3 years old and your tree may produce fruit in the first season.
How Do You Know When A Kumquat Is Ripe?
The kumquat fruit is ripe when it has changed color from green to orange all over. The fruit will be slightly soft and the color bright orange.
Once the fruit has turned orange all over, they are ready to harvest. You can do a taste test to make sure and if the fruit is too tart or hard, leave them on the tree for another week before taste testing again.
Kumquat trees can hold their fruit for a long period of time. This is one of the many reasons gardeners love to grow them; they look attractive!
How Do You Eat A Kumquat
Kumquats can be eaten whole and fresh from the tree. Though like many citruses, the seeds should be avoided if possible. They are not harmful if you do ingest them but if you manage to chew them, they can be bitter tasting. The seed from my Nagami kumquat fruit is usually small enough that I don’t worry about removing seeds.
There are also many other ways to cook and eat a kumquat, including eating them fresh. They can be pickled to use in salads, sweet pickled for a dessert served with ice cream, candied, made into a jam (our kumquat jam here is amazing ) or marmalade, chutney to accompany roast meat as well as baking and drinks.
We have more ideas in our article here for Eating Kumquat Fruit with Recipe Ideas.
Can You Grow A Kumquat Tree From Seed
Yes, you can grow a kumquat tree from seed, however, the fruit will not be reliable.
Kumquat trees purchased from nurseries and garden centers have been grafted onto root-stock which is bred to be disease-resistant. Producing a kumquat tree ready for sale in nurseries and garden centers can take 3 years.
By purchasing an established tree, your kumquat tree will produce fruit faster for you. In fact, many gardeners are pleasantly surprised to see fruit being produced in the first or second season.
Pests And Disease
Although we have detailed a fairly long list of pest, problems and diseases that can affect a kumquat tree, generally they are hardy and low maintenance citrus trees.
One of the best ways to keep on eye on possible problems is to visually check the tree on a weekly basis.
Here are some possible things that can go wrong with your kumquat tree and how you can fix them.
Why is my kumquat tree leaves turning yellow?
Yellow kumquat leaves could indicate any number of possible problems. Such as a lack of soil nutrients including nitrogen and iron. You can fix this problem by giving the kumquat tree a feed of citrus fertilizer applied three-four times a year. Apart from commercial fertilizer, kumquat trees also thrive with the addition of compost, chicken manure and mulching.
Other causes can include a lack of light, transplant shock, root rot from water pooling around the roots and not draining away or even a lack of water.
Armillaria root rot
Phytophthora root rot – this is often caused by poor soil drainage. Excess water does not drain away from the tree roots and causes fungal disease which leads to root rot. Ensure the kumquat tree is initially planted in free-draining soil and then make sure not to overwater the established tree.
Stink Bugs including bronze orange bugs – These pests can ravage your kumquat tree, leaving you with poor fruit and a diminished kumquat harvest. But there are some highly effective and natural methods to remove stink bugs from kumquat trees. Details can be found in our article Natural Remedies To Remove Stink Bugs From Citrus Trees.
Mealybug – treat with horticultural neem oil.
Aphids – they look like small white fluffy cotton dots, these insects and can be treated with horticultural soap.
Leaf miners – citrus leaf miner moth lays her eggs on the citrus leaves. When the larvae hatch, they chew through new leaf growth causing the damage you see in the below photo. There are a number of methods to treat citrus leaf miners naturally including with horticultural neem oil and DIY sprays. More details can be found in our article Citrus Leaf Miner Control: Natural And Organic Methods.Citrus Leaf Miner Damage On A Kumquat Tree
Citrus scale – they look like small brown bumps and can be treated with horticultural neem oil.
Low maintenance food-producing trees are welcome at my place and the kumquat tree makes a wonderful addition to any home garden. Small in size but big on fruit production, once established kumquat trees will look after themselves and reward you in the process.
- Organic Potting Mix – for planting kumquat trees in pots and containers.
- Organic Citrus Fertilizer –
- Chicken Manure Pellets –
- Horticulture Neem Oil – control kumquat tree pests naturally with neem oil.
- Soil and Water Gauge – monitor soil pH and moisture with this gauge.
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growing at home, care, how to fertilize
Kumquat appeared on the shelves of Russian stores quite recently. It is a bright orange tropical fruit. It belongs to the citrus family. In terms of taste and useful qualities, the fruit of this amazing fruit is not inferior to any other citrus fruit .
The kumquat tree is evergreen. It reaches no more than two meters in height. And if pruning is done on time, then the tree will grow to the sides and look like a shrub. The height of the tree also depends on the size of the pot in which it is planted .
Having provided the necessary conditions, kumquats can be grown at home. Let's talk in more detail about the features of growing this exotic plant at home.
Table of contents
- In what regions is Kumquat grown?0018
- Cultivation and care features
- Pruning rules
- Enemies of this plant
- Which varieties are grown at home
In what regions is the Kumquat grown
This fruit was first grown in China. Now it is grown in Japan, Southeast Asia, Europe and the USA.Kumquat - Chinese Mandarin
For a long time it was not possible to grow kumquat in regions with a cool climate. Seeds were difficult to germinate, and if this happened, the cuttings died due to a weak root system. It was possible to achieve the reproduction of this plant only thanks to vaccinations. AT A branch of a kumquat tree has taken root on one of the frost-resistant citrus fruits - three-leafed poncirus . After that, the kumquat survived even at a temperature of -18℃.
It is worth noting that the taste of fruits grown in colder areas is not as sweet as in China.
Now this exotic fruit is grown in the Krasnodar Territory, in the Crimea, Ukraine.
In the suburbs of Moscow and Central Russia kumquat can be grown at home or in a greenhouse . However, even in the south it is rarely planted in the ground, preferring "home care".
Requirements for the dacha
The dacha where you plan to grow Kumquat must be well lit.
Protect the plant from direct sunlight on a hot summer day. It is important to provide diffused light. Otherwise, the direct rays of the sun can cause the tree to drop most of the foliage.
The kumquat tree loves moderate moisture around it . To water this plant correctly, it is recommended to install an automatic watering system at their summer cottage. It should be remembered that the plant may die if it is flooded with water.Kumquat is a sun-loving plant
If the air temperature is low or moderate, it is recommended to water the plant every 2-3 days, or less often . In hot weather (+20-25°C) the tree should be watered every day.
Large changes in temperature can cause the tree to shed its leaves. Therefore, it is necessary to ensure the conditions in the summer cottage in such a way as to avoid temperature fluctuations.
The tree will thrive when watered with sun-warmed water. To do this, you can collect water in an iron barrel, let it stand and warm up in the sun. Then use it to water the plants.
As for the soil for planting this tree, you can purchase soil intended for growing citrus fruits. Also you can make your own special earth . It is necessary to mix soddy soil, garden fertile soil, rotted manure, or leaf humus and sand.
In what season and by what methods is it recommended to plant and propagate a Kumquat tree
Kumquat can be grown from seeds. To do this, choose the most ripe fruit. The seeds are extracted from it. And soak them in any growth stimulator. Plant the seeds to a depth of 1.5-2 cm in pots up to 8 cm in diameter . The pot is covered with plastic wrap and left in a warm place. The first shoots can be expected 35-40 days after planting.
A This fruit is propagated by the following methods :
Experienced citrus growers prefer to propagate it by cuttings or layering.
The most favorable time for kumquat propagation by cuttings is April . A tree planted at this time of the year will take root better and get stronger faster.Kumquat Cuttings
Cuttings for planting must be prepared before winter. They leave at least three kidneys. Cut the cuttings 0.5 cm below the last kidney perpendicularly. The upper cut is made obliquely 1 cm higher from the kidney. In order for the cutting to take root, it is planted in a previously prepared soil for citrus fruits, to a depth of 1.5-2 cm and covered with a glass jar. It is important to provide the future tree with optimal humidity and sufficient watering.
The spring season is also chosen for tree propagation by layering . To do this, take annual shoots 20 cm long and 0.5 cm thick. At a height of 10 cm, two cuts are made on the shoot bark every 1 cm. The bark is removed and the leaves are removed at a height of 5 cm. A plastic bag with earth is tied to this section of the shoot.
In order for cuttings to take root faster, the soil must be constantly moistened.
Features of cultivation and care
The kumquat tree needs to be constantly watered and sprayed with warm settled water. If this is not done, the plant may become ill or die from various pests.
In order for the kumquat to grow evenly, gardeners turn the pot with a tree around its axis by 10 degrees every 8-9 days.
In the summer season, the tree is kept in partial shade. And in winter, on gloomy days, additional lighting is required.
It is necessary to fertilize the tree 2-3 times a month in the spring, summer and autumn season . In the last months of autumn, as well as in winter, it is necessary to fertilize no more than once a month. An aqueous solution of mineral fertilizers is used as a fertilizer. Prepare it as follows : in 1 liter. water dissolve 2-3 gr. ammonium nitrate, 1-2 gr. potassium salt and 4-6 simple superphosphate.
It is also useful to fertilize the tree with a solution of wood ash.In the spring-autumn period, Kumquat should be fertilized 2-3 times a month.
In spring and summer, it is recommended to feed the plant with slurry : 1 part of cow manure is diluted in 10 parts of water. This type of top dressing should be alternated with mineral fertilizers.
It is recommended to replant the Kumquat tree every 3 years . This must be done at the end of February, or in March. It is important to transplant very carefully. It is required to save a whole clod of earth, braided with roots. The drainage at the new tree planting site needs to be updated.
When transplanting, the tree must not be planted deep. After transplantation, it is recommended to spray it and pour it with a weak solution of potassium permanganate.
In the spring, when the crown of the plant is actively forming, it is necessary to prune the tree. The growth of the tree should be uniform on all sides. Pruning should be done when new shoots have appeared on it. That is, the tree must be in the active growth phase. It is important to trim only the stiffened part . Only in this case the tree slows down its growth and throws out side shoots.Kumquat crown formation
After pruning, dormant buds are activated, forming shoots. Future shoots must be tied up so that the bush has a fan-shaped shape. Wounds must be treated with garden pitch . This is done in order to heal the wounds faster, as well as to prevent infection. A year after pruning, the tree will acquire an almost perfect crown.
Enemies of this plant
The main enemies of the tree are sucking, gnawing parasites.
The most famous of them :
- Spider mite
If white dots appear on the underside of the leaves, as well as if the leaves are twisted and entangled in a white cobweb - these are signs of an attack by a spider mite .
To combat it, take a tablespoon of tobacco dust, pour a glass of hot water and after 6 days add 10 gr. laundry soap. Treat the wood with the resulting solution 3 times with an interval of 6 days .
Garlic also helps rid the tree of this parasite. The head of garlic is crushed and steamed in one glass of boiling water. Infuse this solution for about two days. Then they filter and process the plant with it.
Leaves affected by scale insect are covered with sticky gum and have a black coating. You can fight this parasite with a mixture of one teaspoon of engine oil, mixed in a glass of warm water with 40 gr. laundry soap and 2 tbsp. spoons of washing powder.Kumquat leaves affected by scale insects
Before proceeding with the treatment of wood with the resulting mixture, it is necessary to cover the ground with a film. The mixture must not be allowed to enter the soil . Carefully treat the leaves and branches of the affected tree with a cotton swab. It is necessary to wash off the applied solution after 3-4 hours under the shower. After 6 days, the procedure must be repeated.
What varieties are grown at home
There are some types of wood that can be grown at home:
- Kumquat Nagami is one of the common types. It differs from other varieties in sweet fruits resembling olives.
- Kumquat Japonica (this variety is also called Kumquat Meiwa) is a yellow-orange fruit, very similar to a lemon. Shrub with oval leaves and short thorns. This variety is frost resistant. It is grown in the south of Russia in open ground.
- Fukushi Kumquat – fruits are very tasty and sweet.
- Kumquat Fukushi
- Kumquat Meiwa
- Kumquat Nagami
There are also many kumquat hybrids. Some of them are listed below:
- Limequat - made from lime and kumquat
- Orangequat - obtained from orange and kumquat
- Lemonquat – lemon crossed with kumquat
- Calamondin - mandarin and kumquat
Kumquat is a beautiful plant that produces unusual small fruits. Differs from citrus fruits in that they are eaten with the peel . Growing it at home is quite difficult, because it requires a lot of attention and is extremely whimsical. But those lucky ones who managed to provide the necessary conditions and care for this tree know for sure that it was worth it.
How to grow a kumquat at home
The compact and low Kumquat tree is very popular with flower growers all over the world. The plant belongs to citrus, comes from China and has several names.
At home it is called “golden orange”, in Japan it is called kinkan or “golden apple”.
In Europe, citrus became widespread after 1846, when the famous English botanist, traveler and collector Robert Fortune brought a small tree from China to the Kew Royal Botanic Gardens. In his honor, a new genus of citrus fruits, Fortunella, was named, to which the plant belongs.
Some of the most popular varieties often found in the home are Nagami Kumquat and Rotondo, as well as the Fukushi variety with large, juicy and tasty fruits, and the Hong Kong kumquat with inedible and very small fruits.
In cultural floriculture, one can find natural and artificial citrus hybrids of kinkan, and one of them is the well-known Calamondin, obtained by crossing with mandarin.
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At home, the kumquat grows up to one and a half meters. The plant has a dense branched crown and small dark green shiny leaves. The stems are usually devoid of thorns or they are not very large.
Fragrant flowering period falls on July-August. As a rule, flowering lasts 5-7 days, but there are also re-blooming specimens on which flowers bloom again after 2-3 weeks. After flowering, fruits are tied on the tree, which ripen in December-January.
If the plant is purchased for edible fruit, then flowering must be controlled, as a large number of flowers weakens the tree and reduces the number of quality ovaries.
In turn, if there are a lot of ovaries, then they also need to be cut in order to get beautiful full-fledged fruits. Kumquat fruits are small, golden yellow or orange, oval or pear shaped, rich in valuable nutrients.
Kumquat, like all citrus fruits, is quite difficult to grow.
For good growth and flowering, he needs to create comfortable conditions. But the result of increased care and attention will be a magnificent exotic tree that will delight you with tropical fruits.
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Young plants have two growth periods, while adults have one. It begins in late April or early May and lasts approximately 30-50 days. During this time, the growth of the tree is 6-10 cm.
Citrus is a sun-loving crop, so the best location is the south side. However, in the summer, the kinkan needs to create conditions for bright diffused lighting.
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But in winter, direct sunlight is needed, and with a lack of lighting, it is advisable to use a phytolamp. The warmer the room, the more light the plant needs and vice versa.
How to water your kumquat at home
During the spring and summer period, the golden orange requires abundant watering with warm water, the plant reacts to cold water by shedding leaves. The soil should always be slightly damp, but not wet, so be sure to pour out excess water in the pan after 30 minutes.
In winter, limit watering, but do not let the earthen coma dry out. You can determine the time of the procedure by the soil - the top layer should dry by 4 cm, this is about once a week. Water with soft settled or artesian water.
Tropical tree needs high humidity, especially at high temperatures. You can increase the humidity using a spray bottle or a bowl filled with water with wet expanded clay, which is placed next to the pot. An adult plant responds gratefully to a warm shower and rubbing the leaves with a damp cloth.
The optimum summer temperature is 25-30 °C. In winter, it must be lowered to 12-16 ° C.
A cool dormant period encourages flower bud formation and abundant fruiting next season. In the absence of a cool period, the kumquat reacts by losing foliage in the future.
In warm weather, it is useful to take a tree out into the open air, but at the same time protect it from drafts, too high temperatures during the day and from hypothermia at night. Sudden changes in temperature adversely affect the plant, weakening it, and can lead to death.
Young specimens need to be transplanted 2 times a year in spring and late summer after flowering. Middle-aged trees are transplanted every 1-2 years, but an adult kumquat is transplanted no more than once every 2-3 years. The need for transplantation is evidenced by the roots that peek out of the drainage holes.
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The procedure is carried out at the end of February or at the beginning of March by transshipment into a slightly larger pot (by 2-3 cm), at the bottom of which a high drainage layer of expanded clay is laid, approximately a quarter of the volume of the pot.
The tree trunk is deepened to the same level, not higher! Otherwise, citrus can get sick and even die.
The space around the earthen clod is covered with new soil and compacted. After the procedure, the plant is well watered for several days and placed in a warm place with diffused light. During this period, it is also useful to spray the crown of the tree with warm water every day.
For transplanting use a universal garden soil with the addition of sand (perlite) and pieces of pine bark in a ratio of 2:1:1.
There are several factors to consider when fertilizing. At different times of the year, kinkan needs different types of nutrients and different frequency of application.
From March to September top dressing is applied once every two weeks, from mid to March once every one or two months is enough. During the period of growing green mass, fertilizing with a large amount of nitrogen is used; in the budding and flowering phase, phosphorus-potassium fertilizer is used. In autumn, only potassium is added.
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Sick and weakened plants, immediately after transplantation and during winter temperature drops, do not feed, as the procedure will either be ineffective or damage the citrus.
Kumquat can be grown at home from seed, cuttings, banding or grafting shoots. The last two methods are quite laborious and are suitable for experienced flower growers.
Fresh seeds are sown in a pot with a mixture of soil with the addition of coarse sand. Before planting, the seeds are soaked in water with the addition of a hormone for better rooting. The seed pot is covered with a film to create greenhouse conditions. The soil should be moderately moist at all times, but not wet.Growing up kumquat from the stone
The first sprouts appear after a month, and sometimes after 2 months. At the stage of 4-5 leaves, they dive and plant them in separate pots with a part of an earthy coma, since the roots are fragile and the seedlings painfully endure transplantation. When the tree grows a little, then pinch the top.
Kumquat grown from stone does not retain the varietal characteristics of the mother plant and blooms only after 10-15 years. A more productive method that guarantees fruiting is propagation of kumquat by cuttings. The best time for the procedure is April.
Cuttings 10 cm long. They are taken from young flexible shoots, cut at a level of 1 cm above the upper bud, and the lower part of the cut should be 5 mm below the bud.
Sprinkle the bottom of the cutting with crushed coal and bury it in sand (layer 3-4 cm), which is poured on top of the universal soil. A drainage layer is also needed at the bottom of the tank. In a container with a diameter of 7-9 cm, 3 cuttings of kinkan can be planted to a depth of 2 cm.
To create greenhouse conditions, the cuttings are covered with a jar or a plastic bottle, and the soil is kept moist. The container is placed in a warm place with diffused light. If the temperature is 2-3 degrees higher than room temperature, then after two or three weeks roots begin to form.