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Why won't my lemons grow??



 
 
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  #1  
Old 20-03-2007, 01:55 AM posted to rec.gardens
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Posts: 44
Default Why won't my lemons grow??

Hi all..

I have a lemon tree planted in the back yard and it's full of lemons
which have been green for weeks now.. They look like they're not
growing much, just .. Staying green ..
I water the tree once a week for about half an hour, sometimes more..

The tree is full of flowers (which, I must admit, have an amazing
scent).. Do I have to cut these flowers off?

Summer has recently ended in Australia, and Autumn has begun although
our days are still really hot ..

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  #2  
Old 20-03-2007, 09:58 PM posted to rec.gardens
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Posts: 585
Default Why won't my lemons grow??

Ivan wrote:
Hi all..

I have a lemon tree planted in the back yard and it's full of lemons
which have been green for weeks now.. They look like they're not
growing much, just .. Staying green ..
I water the tree once a week for about half an hour, sometimes more..

The tree is full of flowers (which, I must admit, have an amazing
scent).. Do I have to cut these flowers off?

Summer has recently ended in Australia, and Autumn has begun although
our days are still really hot ..


Lemons mature slowly. It takes a few months for blossom to result in a
ripe lemon.

DO NOT remove the flowers. Lemons are ever-bearing; they have no
season. Unless frost stops blossoms from forming, you will find
flowers, little green lemons, large green lemons, and ripe lemons all at
the same time. Eventually, this will keep you in a constant supply of
fresh lemons.

Don't pick the ripe lemons until you need them. Citrus stays quite
fresh for a long time if left on the tree.

Don't over-water. Allow the top 1-2 inches (2.5-5.0 cm) of soil to dry
between watering. Citrus is very sensitive to soils that drain poorly
or that are soggy. Because my soil is heavy clay, I planted my tangelo
in a raised bed with gypsum, wood chips, peat moss, compost, and plaster
sand dug into the soil to improve drainage.

Citrus should be fed regularly from about two weeks before the last
average date of frost in the spring until about two months before the
first average date of frost in the fall. Frequent, LIGHT applications
of fertilizer are better than a few, heavy applications. Citrus prefers
a slightly acidic soil, lots of nitrogen, and some iron and zinc.
Depending on the soil, some phosphorus might also be needed. Unless you
are an organic gardener, commercial citrus food should be used. Where I
live, the commercial citrus food lacks zinc; so I add a small amount of
zinc sulfate with each feeding. Only feed if the soil is slightly
moist; feeding in dry soil will result in root burn as soon as you add
water.

Pruning is not needed to promote fruiting. Prune only to remove dead
growth, to keep branch ends off the ground, and to make the tree look
nice. If ends touch the ground, that becomes a route for ants and other
pests to reach the foliage and fruit.

Here, branch ends touching the ground is a major path for snails; I
don't know if snails are a problem in Australia. Snails will not only
destroy fruit; they will also eat the bark off the limbs and trunk,
eventually killing the tree. In my garden, I have decollate snails
(Rumina decollata), carnivorous snails that eat the eggs and young of
the destructive brown snails (Helix aspersa). (R. decollata are legal
here but not in some other parts of California.) For my dwarf citrus, I
also tied a braid of copper wire around each pot. For my tangelo, I
tied a braid of copper wire around the base of the trunk in a way that
allows the braid to expand as the trunk grows.

--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
Sunset Zone: 21 -- interior Santa Monica Mountains with some ocean
influence (USDA 10a, very close to Sunset Zone 19)
Gardening pages at http://www.rossde.com/garden/
  #3  
Old 20-03-2007, 11:54 PM posted to rec.gardens
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Posts: 44
Default Why won't my lemons grow??

Hi there..


Thank you all so much for your reassuring replies.
They've been green for a while now, and we've been having some really
hot and dry weather, which made me assume would cause the lemons to
ripen earlier .. I guess I was mistaken though.
The tree has lotsof lemons of different sizes so I will be looking
forward to its fruits all year.. I recently bought this house with the
lemon tree in the back.. It was almost dead with no fruits nor any
flowers when I got here .. The tree had fallen to its side and was
being held up with a plank of wood..
When I got here I started taking care of it, watering it, cutting off
dead branches, and a few months later it's flowering like I've never
seen before.
I had no idea lemon trees flowered.
Can I assume this is a good sign of a healthy tree?

  #4  
Old 21-03-2007, 12:19 AM posted to rec.gardens
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Posts: 585
Default Why won't my lemons grow??

Ivan wrote:
Hi there..


Thank you all so much for your reassuring replies.
They've been green for a while now, and we've been having some really
hot and dry weather, which made me assume would cause the lemons to
ripen earlier .. I guess I was mistaken though.
The tree has lotsof lemons of different sizes so I will be looking
forward to its fruits all year.. I recently bought this house with the
lemon tree in the back.. It was almost dead with no fruits nor any
flowers when I got here .. The tree had fallen to its side and was
being held up with a plank of wood..
When I got here I started taking care of it, watering it, cutting off
dead branches, and a few months later it's flowering like I've never
seen before.
I had no idea lemon trees flowered.
Can I assume this is a good sign of a healthy tree?


Unfortunately, some plants put out an extra effort to reproduce
(flowering and fruiting) just as they are dying. Citrus will flower
well when very healthy and also when dying. The difference is seen in
how well it produces new foliage, which will soon slow as you enter your
southern autumn. Thus, you really won't know for about 6 months whether
your tree is doing well.

--
David E. Ross
Climate: California Mediterranean
Sunset Zone: 21 -- interior Santa Monica Mountains with some ocean
influence (USDA 10a, very close to Sunset Zone 19)
Gardening pages at http://www.rossde.com/garden/
  #5  
Old 21-03-2007, 09:07 AM posted to rec.gardens
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Posts: 364
Default Why won't my lemons grow??

On 20 Mar 2007 16:54:52 -0700, "Ivan" wrote:

Hi there..


Thank you all so much for your reassuring replies.
They've been green for a while now, and we've been having some really
hot and dry weather, which made me assume would cause the lemons to
ripen earlier .. I guess I was mistaken though.
The tree has lotsof lemons of different sizes so I will be looking
forward to its fruits all year.. I recently bought this house with the
lemon tree in the back.. It was almost dead with no fruits nor any
flowers when I got here .. The tree had fallen to its side and was
being held up with a plank of wood..
When I got here I started taking care of it, watering it, cutting off
dead branches, and a few months later it's flowering like I've never
seen before.



I had no idea lemon trees flowered.
Can I assume this is a good sign of a healthy tree?


(Chuckle) How do you think little lemons get born?

You have been a wonderful nurse/midwife. Congratulations!

(First tree I put in when I bought the house, dern near 40 years ago,
and it's still putting out so much that I have to give them away in
droves.)


 




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