How to Grow & Maintain Citrus Trees
Citrus trees provide one of the most enjoyed fruits in America, the orange. If you own a citrus tree or desire to grow one, we have created a simple ingredient list for you. Follow the below steps to grow and maintain these delicious trees.
Healthy and quick draining soil
- Get a soil test! Visit your local SiteOne store today to determine if you have clay, sandy or loam soil. If your soil type is not desirable, there are ways to change this. See our article on improving your soil to increase water efficiency and plant growth.
- Drip irrigation is the best method to use for irrigating your citrus trees. Not only does it provide deep watering, but it prevents overwatering which causes root damage. If water isn’t consistently being applied, fruit splitting can occur.
- For young trees, fertilize once every 1-2 months during spring and summer while in fall and winter, every 2-3 months. When trees mature, cut down the amount of times to just spring and summer, every 2-3 months. You can also gradually increase the amount of fertilizer dose for mature trees. We suggest using LESCO 15-15-15, Lilly Miller Citrus and Avocado 10-6-4 to ensure enough nitrogen is given. Or use a liquid fertilizer attached to your drip irrigation system, like EZ-FLO.
- Citrus tree roots are shallow, therefore they need protection. It is important not to place mulch too close to the trunk to prevent root rot. Spread mulch 6-12” away from trunk to assist in oxygen flow.
Gentle Pruning after Fruiting
- A good time to start this is from February to March. Ideally you want four main branches for fruit to grow to create a strong foundation for the tree. Start by clearing the center of the tree to increase airflow. Prune young shoots to create a more full appearance. Read this article to learn more about proper pruning.
- Citrus trees love the sun. The more direct exposure to sunlight, the more it produces. They need about 5 hours of sunlight every day. Take this in consideration when choosing a place to plant your citrus tree.