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 Post subject: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 4:45 pm 
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Sick of Cupcakes
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Location: Modesto, CA
My boyfriend and I eat lemon & lime on everything. Organic lemons are easy enough to find here - my mom has a tree so I know they grow. Everything I attempt to grow does not work out. :(

Our backyard is pretty shady - we do have a pomegranate tree that does well. We want citrus though!

What to do?

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 6:37 pm 
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I just did a quick search and can't tell if Modesto is zone 7 or 9a. I live in a 9b and we have serious citrus. We get a cold frost maybe twice per year, but only one night, and never snow or sleet. If you kept it in a big pot you could bring it inside if you had to. But it wants sun, lots of sun.
Starting the citrus is the issue- in the US i've never had a seed sprout. Here where the stuff is less cloned every seed sprouts- but most citrus up north either it's engineered to be seedless or it's cloned or whatever. But it takes a long long time to get to fruit production. I think you would do best to buy a start- maybe a yearling or 2 yo plant, and put it in a bigass pot, and give it lots of love. I've seen small trees with fruit, not sure how many years you need but i would guess 5 at least.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Mon Sep 26, 2011 10:32 pm 
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All of our citrus trees have taken three years to bear serious fruit. They are all in the ground and get full sun.

Full sun is required.

For limes, I would recommend a Mexican lime tree. We first had a key lime and it died. The Mexican lime tree is amazingly prolific.

I'm down in SoCal near the ocean, but either way: Full sun!


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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 8:16 am 
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ol' garly cooch
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Our MA retail store manager is a citrus tree freak. She grows them indoors:

http://blog.wormsway.com/post/Edible-Fr ... doors.aspx

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 10:09 am 
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My gf got a lime tree last yeasr and its been in a pot (not too sunny all winter) and its got like 30 little fruits on it, and its still flowering. We really need to set it up the indoor plants with some lights over them, because the window doesn't get enough.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 11:05 am 
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ol' garly cooch
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Buy a florescent system from me!

wormsway.com 1-800-274-WORM. Customer appreciation days are 9/30-10/7-10% off everything. If you buy from the 30th until the 3rd, you get a free gift.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 6:31 pm 
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Sick of Cupcakes
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I am going to go look at trees...We have a lawn care guy that comes out who will help me with planting and stuff. :)

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Sep 27, 2011 6:43 pm 
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I bought a tree that was a couple years old when I lived in sf and planted it in my back courtyard, it didn't have a lot of sunlit and it grew lemons. When I moved to the north bay I bout another tree, it is younger but it gets lots of sun- no fruit yet!


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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 10:39 am 
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jewbacca wrote:
Buy a florescent system from me!

wormsway.com 1-800-274-WORM. Customer appreciation days are 9/30-10/7-10% off everything. If you buy from the 30th until the 3rd, you get a free gift.


How do I pick?

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Fri Sep 30, 2011 11:32 am 
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ol' garly cooch
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How big is your growing space? How many plants are we talkin'?

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 04, 2011 6:55 am 
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Seagull of the PPK
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uh oh!! be careful!! someone sent me this today! (from a source i TOTALLY do not trust, but just for pure OMFG factor, give it a read)
http://www.naturalnews.com/033758_USDA_lemon_tree.html

Quote:
Several years ago, Bridget Donovan, who has now been dubbed "The Lemon Tree Lady," purchased a Meyer lemon tree from meyerlemontree.com. A resident of Wisconsin, Donovan purchased the tree legally and in full accordance with all federal and state laws regulating citrus transport, and had lovingly cultivated and cared for her indoor citrus plant for nearly three years.

Then, out of nowhere, Donovan received an unexpected letter from the USDA informing her that government officials were going to come and seize her tree and destroy it -- and that she was not going to be compensated for her loss. The letter also threatened that if Donovan was found to be in possession of "regulated citrus" again, she could be fined up to $60,000.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Wed Oct 05, 2011 1:41 pm 
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Holy shiitake, did you read the comments on that thing? People start talking about how it's time for another civil war. Yep.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Mon Oct 10, 2011 12:05 pm 
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jewbacca wrote:
How big is your growing space? How many plants are we talkin'?


I will probably just go with the el cheapo fixture in long and get good bulbs. There aren't a lot of plants that need lots of light, most of the indoors plants are ok with low house light anyway. We have an ugly plastic shelf that it will probably fit over well.
Sadly I was slow to order and missed the sale thing you mentioned before!

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Mon Oct 10, 2011 12:46 pm 
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ol' garly cooch
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It's cool lycophyte. Good bulbs are essential. The big thing is to make sure the plant has plenty of P and K and spends no more than 12 hours under a light.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2011 12:08 pm 
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jewbacca wrote:
It's cool lycophyte. Good bulbs are essential. The big thing is to make sure the plant has plenty of P and K and spends no more than 12 hours under a light.


Yup...being Tropical and all, 12 hour days are its standard. Now, does minimal overhead lighting mess too much? I mean its probably not strong enough, right?

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2011 6:20 pm 
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ol' garly cooch
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Indoor lighting isn't going to be the same as the sun. But it's light. I'm all about time and nutrients, I'm not to concerned about lumen output like other indoor gardeners.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Oct 18, 2011 1:33 pm 
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So, bulbs are more expensive than the fixtures...I was thinking of getting the 4ft cheapo fixture...and the 4pk of 4' vitalume. I don't see any that have just 2 bulbs, which is annoying because florescents are supposed to last so long the backups will probably just break when I move 4 times before the previous ones burn out. Or at least, I've never burned out a fluorescent before, but I'm certain to have gotten mercury poisoning when they bust on me (previously they have been spiral florescents). This a good enough choice?

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 1:27 pm 
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All of our limes but 1 or 2 have fallen off. Luckily one of the stragglers is the biggest, but its sad! Of course its not like our house is very bright or warm but its still sad.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 5:46 am 
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I don't have anything very productive to add to the discussion except that I just bought a Meyer lemon tree from the nursery. It's in a pot on the balcony, I'm excited!

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:53 am 
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ol' garly cooch
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Don't give up, lyco! I just met with the guys at Oregon's Only Organics-(most products aren't vegan, but they have a few that are) and they emphasized the importance of calcium as part of a plant's feeding schedule for a few reasons: the Ca/Mg combo strengthens the cellular wall, that strengthening makes the plant less visible to insects-(which btw see in infrared!), and improves the scent and flavor of the fruits. They did say the size wouldn't be huge, but the flavor will be distinct.

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 12:54 pm 
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jewbacca wrote:
Don't give up, lyco! I just met with the guys at Oregon's Only Organics-(most products aren't vegan, but they have a few that are) and they emphasized the importance of calcium as part of a plant's feeding schedule for a few reasons: the Ca/Mg combo strengthens the cellular wall, that strengthening makes the plant less visible to insects-(which btw see in infrared!), and improves the scent and flavor of the fruits. They did say the size wouldn't be huge, but the flavor will be distinct.


I will suggest to my gf that a calcium addition might be a good idea!

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 7:58 pm 
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Can you grow the lemons or limes very easily from seed if they are organic/non-cloned? I'd sure like to try....

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Thu Dec 22, 2011 10:51 pm 
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ol' garly cooch
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It's really a good idea to get quality starts from a reputable nursery. I'd think CA would be eyeballs deep in that sort of thing, no?

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:31 pm 
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Last summer I bought a clearance rack Meyer lemon tree from Lowes. It was maybe 6 inches tall with a few leaves and really quite sad looking. The instructions said to put it in a 12 inch pot and leave it out in the summer, but bring it in for the winter when the nights reach 40 degrees. My husband made fun of me and my "lemon tree." Brought it in for the winter and by this summer it was way bigger!! We put it back out for the summer, and now have it back in for the winter again and it just flowered! It smells so good, like a combination between jasmine and honeysuckle. No signs of lemons yet, but this tree has been pretty easy to take care of so far, and it definitely has the potential for producing lemons! I would definitely look into meyer lemons as a possibility, and if you keep 'em in pots you can move them around from sunny spot to sunny spot and take them with you if you move!

(As a sidebar of information -- we live in upstate NY! I imagine it would be much happier in a warmer climate!)

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 Post subject: Re: help me plant/grow citrus
PostPosted: Fri Dec 23, 2011 12:41 pm 
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Our lime went bad-news-bears. Its losing a lot of leaves, though the younger leaves at the ends are looking healthy. All the 30 some fruits fell off.

It did get chilly in the house while we were on vacation but I doubt it got below 40 degrees. We couldn't see any insects but we soap sprayed it now. I haven't gotten around to getting a plant lamp yet though, since we are looking at moving. We are moving the plants to our extra room though so it will get more light there. Don't give up lime tree! It was also a Lowes clearance rack orphan.

Alas. I wonder what else we can do for it.

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