Care of Lemon and Lime Tree

Ladybug3131April 7, 2013


First time posting and really just looking for some advice. My sister has a small Lemon and Lime tree in large terracotta pots which she was just given and has asked that I look after them for the next couple of weeks.

I noticed the lemon is currently covered in aphids and have seen some helpful sprays on the forum which I will try. It also has leaf curl and yellowing of the leaves at the top.

I am wondering if someone can give me some advice as to whether I should prune now in Autumn and when/whether I should fertilise them now or at another time in the year? Any other care tips needed for this time of year?

Also, the trunk below the graft is shooting off a very spiny, small leafed branch on the lemon tree. Should I cut this off and what probably is it?

Aside from the aphids, the trees look very healthy and the lime has fruit on it at the moment with more coming through.

Thanks for any help!!!!


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A lemon and lime tree! Is there one lemon tree in a pot as well as a lime tree in another pot? Or is one grafted onto the other; in short is there one or two trees? As for aphids, leaf miners and other bugs that attack citrus, there are safe commercial products to take care of them if they become a problem. The yellowing of the leaves might suggest they need a bit of fertiliser, you could try the slow release variety recommended for pot culture; sprinkle on top according to directions on the pack. Best thing for citrus, though, is to plant them in the ground and give them a good feed in autumn and spring: blood and bone, poultry manure, I use and as my trees (a washington navel orange and a Myer lemon) don't get aphids and the leaf miners and occasional gall wasp don't bother them much I rarely if ever need to spray. Oh, and yes, pull off any growth below the graft otherwise they'll take over the tree.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 2:24AM
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Oh and as for pruning: Peter Cundle (ex Gardening Australia expert) always reckoned you should not let the tree fruit for the first 5 years, that allows the tree to mature before it bears fruit, although I allow a few nice lemons and oranges to mature on mine after 4 years. Also, while they're still in pots, I'd just do a little tidying up pruning; a little clip here and there.

    Bookmark   April 10, 2013 at 2:31AM
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Have you tried using soap water you should use it, soapy water can really annoy aphids and can prevent them from coming.

    Bookmark   August 6, 2014 at 5:25AM
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Yes, I read about that from a gardener's column in the Sunday paper awhile back, he said soap and water and a toothbrush. Been thinking about the soap and water but as for the toothbrush, I don't think I'll be that fussy. I have, however, did a Peter Cundall and pruned it way back to let good air circulate through but the trunk and stems still look rather whitish. Had a couple of buckets full of oranges (Washington Naval) and lemons (Meyer lemon) and both are very eatable - the scale, whatever, hasn't affected the fruit. Must get to the soap and water bit though.

    Bookmark   September 7, 2014 at 2:56AM
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