The Q&A Archives: Meyer Lemon Tree

Question: What type of Fertilizer should I use for this Tree?
How can I tell when the Fruit is ripe?
When is the best time to prune?
What is the lowest temperature to leave the plant outside?

Answer: Hermine,

One question at a time please. We're building a database of answers and can only use single questions. Please feel free to ask questions as often as you like but one at a time. Use a fertilizer for houseplants such as Miracle Gro or a similar product following label instructions on mixing and applying it.

The juice quality of all citrus fruits improves during the season, i.e., the longer it stays on the tree, the better it gets. Citrus fruits generally store well on the tree; some fruit drop does occur but usually is compensated by increased size of the remaining fruit.

Even so, citrus fruits will ultimately begin to dry out on the tree, so they should be harvested and used before this occurs. Different types or varieties of lemons ripen at different times. I suggest you pick a fruit or two from your trees and sample them. Do this every week or two comparing the quality. This will give you a good idea when your variety is best harvested in your growing location.

Unlike highly perishable fruit like a peach, a lemon's harvest period is quite long, so there will be several weeks in which you will be able to harvest high quality fruits from your tree.

Pruning is generally not needed but if you do the best time is in late winter to early spring. If temperatures fall below about 30 degrees that lemon will be killed or at least suffer some major damage depending on the length of exposure.

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