The Q&A Archives: Seedless Lisbon Lemon Leaves Have All Dropped Off

Question: I bought my plant and then planted it in a lerger pot. I keep it inside, since our winters can get below the tolerance of the bush. It was doing beautifully until sometime during the winter, I had to open the patio doors and do something. I must have left the doors open too long, because the next day, all the leaves fell off the plant.

Since then, it has tried to produce several leaves and blossoms, only for them to fall off after a couple of days.
The stems are still green and flexible.

Can this plant be saved?

Answer: Citrus trees are frost tender, most rated for zones 9-10. They will suffer damage if temperatures drop below 32 F and can be killed if weather is severe for prolonged periods. They are sensitive to changes in temperature, so that's probably what caused the leaf drop. However, leaf drop is a common occurence on citrus in late winter/early spring as new growth begins. Extremely heavy leaf drop may be caused by improper water or overfertilizing. Citrus trees usually take several years or more to develop a consistent fruit crop. Grown in a pot, your tree will require regular watering and fertilizing. Try to find a fertilizer formulated especially for citrus and follow package instructions. Also, citrus requires full sunlight. Try to move it somewhere where it gets full sun but is still protected from possible drops in temperature. Since the stems are still green, you should be able to save it.

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