Please help :(

Discussion in 'Citrus' started by TheoGrecu, Dec 6, 2018.

  1. TheoGrecu

    TheoGrecu New Member

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    Greetings, esteemed botanists ans citrus specialists, please share your wisdom and help me keep this little citrus alive. I bought it some weeks ago from an exotic plants shop, I watered it carefully so it wont get overwatered. I placed it at the window for maximum light (not so much since it's winter here). The house temperature is around 20-25 degrees Celsius (77 Fahrenheit).

    Sadly, last week I noticed some leaves drying and falling. Looking at them closely found that they have some black areas, searched the internet but couldn't find much, so thats why I came here to you, for advice.

    I am posting photos, hope they are good enough.
     

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  2. Will B

    Will B New Member

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    First photo looks like possibly botrytis. I would suggest removing the leaf (or leaves). Botrytis is not too serious as long as you do not have cool damp conditions, which would be unusual in a house. Second photo looks like minor physical damage or possibly sooty mold fungus, does it come off if you rub it? Sooty mold is not too serious either, but is sometimes an indication there are other pests such as scale which secrete honeydew. Look closely as they can be hard to spot. The third photo looks like a very happy citrus. Keep in mind that when you buy a citrus the conditions it was growing under change and often result in leaf drop, particularly when it moves into a darker and dryer environment such as going from a grower's greenhouse to a residential house.
     
  3. TheoGrecu

    TheoGrecu New Member

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    Thank you so much !

    Can you please tell me when it's the best time to move it in a larger pot, now or in the spring ? I bought citrus soil special for it, fertilizer and a very nice ceramic pot, but don't want to do any timing mistakes.
     
  4. Lemon Lime Orange

    Lemon Lime Orange New Member

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    Your problem is very easy to understand. Light is the most important variable affecting the productivity of citrus and indoors sometimes unless you add grow lights is not enough. Transpiration is the process by which moisture is carried through plants from roots to small pores on the underside of leaves, where it changes to vapour and is released to the atmosphere. The transpiration rate is a function of ambient temperature, root temperature, leaf temperature, humidity and light. As a reference point, a greenhouse overwintering citrus would have a temperature of say 77F and RH between 60-70. Your home is 77F and your RH is probably between 30-40. When you have a high temperature and low humidity it creates a high transpiration rate where the plant is exhausting moisture too fast. This is why leaves are drying out, dropping, and browning. What you can do is lower your temperature, increase your humidity, use a humidity tray at the base of the citrus, and use a very small fan. Air flow will help the plant leaves cool and conserve moisture. Too much air will do the opposite. A radiant heater in the background is deadly for citrus. You can't grow citrus near any source of heat or cooling. In nature, there is a symbiotic relationship between ground temperature and air temperature which regulates root temperature, leaf temperature, transpiration, and photosynthesis, and metabolism in harmony. When you bring citrus indoors this relationship is very difficult to maintain. Leaves are often shed when there is a major temperature difference between the roots and leaves. Citrus roots don't grow well indoors so repotting is unnecessary and a very bad idea. Citrus prefer to be root bound and I would only repot if necessary in the summer. Google VPD calculator. Other issues are the leaf temperature from the sun, the root temperature, and the amount or lack thereof of photosynthesis. The transpiration rate is a function of three in-house variables: temperature, humidity and light. Also indoors in dry conditions spider mites will suck the moisture from the plant compounding the other problems.
     
    Last edited: Jan 13, 2019
  5. TheoGrecu

    TheoGrecu New Member

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    Thank you for the extremely precise instructions. The way I see it, I need to make that humidity tray asap.

    Problem is, I already transplanted it and now it has quite a sturdy pot, gonna be a challenge to find a tray for it lol. Damn winter :(
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 13, 2019

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