The Q&A Archives: Arizona Sweet Orange Tree

Question: I have a 5 year old orange tree that gave us much fruit this year. Now that the fruit has been removed, can you give me any ideas and time for pruning and fertilizing?

Answer: Citrus trees should be fertilized 3 times each year. A good rule of thumb is to apply 2 cups of a 3-1-2 ratio product (such as 15-5-10) per inch of trunk diameter in February, before spring growth and bloom. Then apply 1 cup per inch in May and again in August. Spread the fertilizer beneath the entire branchspread and just beyond. Water immediately before and after fertilization.

Pruning is rarely necessary for citrus. Remove branches that are dead or broken and any growing down low to the ground. Be sure to protect any of the thin bark that is exposed to sun by whitewashing or painting with white latex indoor paint.

Good luck with your trees and thanks for the question!

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