Q&As/Citrus/Growing Grafted Lemon Trees

Question

Shortly after planting, the grafted trees lost many of their leaves and some branches started to die off. The leaves that stayed are looking dry and curled up. Some trees are blossoming, but there is no new growth. 

Answer

It is difficult to diagnose without seeing the tree, as unfortunately the symptoms you describe are similar for both overly wet or dry growing conditions. You will need to work through a checklist of: soil, site, wind and nutrition to find the problem. 

Citrus prefer a warm, sunny north-facing, sheltered site with fertile well-drained soil. They don’t like being exposed to wind, are frost tender and don’t like having ‘wet feet’, eg: very wet soil. Check the trees aren’t affected by winds or frost and ensure your windbreaks are adequate. 

Citrus trees do require deep watering several times a year, especially during periods of insufficient rainfall. If your tree is not receiving regular watering and adequate nutrition it can become stressed, causing poor growth. Regularly water your tree, especially throughout the summer months and keep a good layer of mulch around the tree to retain moisture. 

Yellow leaves are usually an indicator of a lack of nitrogen. Citrus are ‘gross feeders’ and need regular applications of specific citrus fertiliser and a good side dressing of compost. Apply Daltons Compost around your trees, add Daltons incredible edibles® Citirus Fertiliser on top and water sufficiently to wash nutrients into the root zone. 

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