Help with Lemon Tree

Discussion in 'Citrus' started by Sascha, Jun 15, 2016.

  1. Sascha

    Sascha New Member

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    Hi, I recently got a dwarf Eureka lemon tree that is potted in a planter. It has not been doing well since it got transplanted. The leaves are turning yellow and falling off. There's a lot of conditions that may be adversely affecting the tree, so I'm not sure which to try and treat. I'm going to list out as much info as I can below and post pictures of the tree. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

    Got tree a week and a half before transplanting. Tree seemed healthy while it was in original pot being watered by sprinkler system.

    Transplanted into planter using citrus potting soil with fertilizer premixed.

    When transplanting, a friend that was helping me was fairly violent about shaking apart roots. I read that you aren't supposed to mess with them when transplanting, so I'm worried.

    The root system was not root bound and did not show signs of rot, but it did appear to be fairly small.

    I transplanted it with a bit if the root ball above the top of soil.

    The tree is in Southern CA and gets morning and afternoon sun.

    I originally set it up to be watered with a drip irrigation system that was giving it 1.5 gallons of water a day.

    I've since switched to deep watering with a hose twice a week.

    There are 4 drainage holes in the planter that are a inch wide.

    The planter was new and hasn't been used for any thing before.
     

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  2. thanrose

    thanrose Active Member

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    My backyard gardening experience with citrus in general is that the root systems are not dense, but are somewhat fragile. Some plants and trees need to have roots loosened up before planting, but not likely a citrus.

    At this point, you might want to lightly prune so that the weakened roots have time to regrow or recover, but the drawback to that is that the size of the tree and actually the number of leaves have something to do with the ability to fruit. Keep it somewhat sheltered from the sun, let it dry a bit between waterings, and wait for new growth. It will take full sun again when it has recovered sufficiently, perhaps in the early Autumn.
     
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  3. Sascha

    Sascha New Member

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    Thanks, I put some shade up for my lemon. I'm going to let it dry completely after deep watering.

    Question on pruning. The tree hasn't produced any fruit yet, so would pruning it set it back very far? Also, the better leaves are on the end of the branches, so would pruning still be advisable?

    Thanks for your help :-)
     
  4. thanrose

    thanrose Active Member

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    No, don't prune now in my best guess. If it's strong enough to have already sent out new growth, the roots are recovering. The shriveled or yellowed leaves will fall. Any pruning would be done to remove problematic growth, like crossed branches or poor angles on the branch to trunk. The tree will possibly flower in the early to mid winter (lemons are usually early), but don't expect fruit to mature until it's a little bigger and has more leaves overall.
     
  5. Sascha

    Sascha New Member

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    Ok, thanks for your help!
     

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