Just wondering if anyone has some suggestions regarding what condition I might be looking at with this Tahitian Lime that I planted out 2 months ago?
Well it HAS been a terribly dry summer in SEQ, not a good one for a tree to get established. And hot, given the plant is now out in full sun.
Can you get a closer shot of the new growth, though - it looks a bit deformed and it would be good to rule out things like citrus leaf miner etc.
Yeah, it's all just affecting the new growth, however, the soil around the base does look a bit dry. I wonder if maybe it's a soil deficiency? If you've got some compost I'd dig it into the top spoil there with a dose of good ole blood-n-bone and keep the watering up for awhile. While citrus prefer a light, well drained soil so long as it's not too exposed, they are hungry and once or twice a year a dose of b. and b, with a touch of chook manure will encourage fruit production.
Thanks Alison Oz & Funnel Web. I guess it could be all of the above. Here is an upclose image of the leaves. Today I have removed another 15cm of grass from around the perimeter, dug in a large amount of composting woodchip, mixed with soil and dynamic lifter. We had some rain this afternoon and I will keep the water up and hopefully i see some change over the coming weeks. I'll have to pick up some blood and bone....any recommendations on a specific brand? Ta.
Some more closeups of the leaves
....and last one.
No any brand of B. and B. will do. The 'composting woodchip' you dug in, how composted was it, ie. had it completely broken down? The reason being is that if it has to do further decomposing in the soil, it will draw elements from the soil for the purpose reducing the amount available for the plant. A good rule is that when you add fertilise (blood and bone, chook manure) just spread it on the surface away from the trunk. That way the decomposing process does not take minerals from the roots of the plant.
The new leaves are distorted because of leaf miner. Apart from leaf miner I thought that the older leaves were showing signs of stress and the plant needed some feeding as discussed by the other posters.
I have a Tahitian lime that is bearing loads of fruit and keeps a golf club bar and the neighbours supplied. It also has distorted leaves caused by miner, not sure if i should pull out the big guns or just put up with distorted leaves.
Hi funnelweb..no the woodchip hasnt completely broken down but is pretty moist...also mixed in some soil. I don't have any other compost at present..early stages in the garden...will have to pick some up. Could you tell me how dynamic lifter is different to B&B....the strengths in using one over the other in specific applications? Arthurm...ta...yes i had a closer look and it definitely is leaf miner...I'm not to worried about the aesthetics as long as they are not detrimental to the life of a young plant...i'm watching it closely and hoping it doesn't spread to the whole plant. Holding off on the snips for now. :)
A pic of the citrus miner...
As far as I'm aware, Dynamic lifter is a combination of manures and B & B., so I doubt there's really any, or much, difference. If fact, I've recently changed from giving my compost heap(s) separate garden trowels full of each with a doze of dolomite lime to just a few good heaps a dynamic lifter with a half a heap of dolomite. I buy it in bulk loads, well, big bags full. Sheep manure is also very good, as Peter Cundel (old Gardening Aus. presenter) used to swear by.
Leaf miner only attacks the new growth. The problem with using the big guns is that you bump off the helpful predators. Some must be present otherwise every new leaf
would be riddled with leaf miner.
The lime tree makes new growth at various times during the year and according to some info. on the net the spring growth is less likely to be affected.
I'd give the leaves a thorough spray (top and bottom of the leaves) with White Oil, then maybe hit it with a general Citrus Fertiliser, watered in well, available from any good nursery, probably even in Woolies.
Leaf Miners are in under the "skin" of the leaf, ordinary insecticides don't affect them. You need something systemic which gets into the leaf. The problem is that they're everywhere, if you get rid of one lot it won't be long before another lot move in, especially if pesticides have wiped out their natural predators. Have a look at this link from NSW DPI.
Here is a link that might be useful: Citrus Leafminer
Thanks everyone. Very helpful.