The Q&A Archives: lemon tree

Question: So what if my lemon tree leaves are falling from everywere on the tree then is there any problem or is it just the wind?

Answer: If your new lemon tree is dropping new leaves as well as old leaves, it's an indication of stress. This can be caused by water stress or even environmental stress. We'll have to put on our detective caps to figure out the problem. If your tree is still in the nursery container, it may have just come from the grower where growing conditions were different than in your yard. Or, if the pot is in direct sunshine, the roots could be overheating. A final consideration is you might be over or under watering. If you took the tree out of the pot and planted it, the dropping leaves might be a symptom of transplant stress which could be from the way you planted it or the fact that your soil is different that what it was used to in the container. It might also be a result of your watering practices. In my own experience, I've found that citrus trees take one to two full years in the ground before they adjust and begin growing well. And once they adjust, they really grow fast. So if your plant is still in the nursery pot, make sure it is watered thoroughly but be careful not to overwater to the point that the soil remains too wet. And, try to protect the container from direct sunshine so the roots don't bake. If you've already planted it in the ground, check your watering practices. I think the best way to water is to build a water well or watering basin beneath the tree by mounding up a few inches of soil all around, about 12" away from the trunk. Fill this basin with water, allow to drain, then fill it a second time. This method concentrates the water directly over the roots and allows it to trickle down, wetting the entire root mass. Do this once a week (twice if the weather is really hot). Aside from the above, there's not much else you need to do to help your tree adjust. Just give it time and it should re-establish its root system and perk up.

Best wishes with your lemon tree!

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