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Avatar for mwkoehler
May 13, 2020 9:29 AM CST
Thread OP
Dallas, TX
Hey all -

Hoping that you can offer some advice to save my Meyer Lemon tree. I've attached some images, hopefully they're instructive. The primary issues that I'm noticing are 1. Leaves are turning to lime green/yellow instead of the deep green color that I expect (some have blotching/discoloration too), and 2. I can see multiple spider webs (with miniature spiders that you probably can't see in the pictures) and ants (you can see these in the last picture).

This dwarf meyer lemon tree (~5 years old) was in a pot for the past few years and I just transplanted it about 8 weeks ago. I've not had much success growing it in the pot (I've gotten one lemon), so I figured I'd try giving it more space to see if I'd have any success that way. It's obviously had a bit of trouble with frost and dropped leaves in the past, but I thought it had recovered.

Any ideas? Seems like it could be a combination of nutrients and pests, but not sure how to resolve either of them.

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May 13, 2020 11:59 PM CST
Name: sumire
Reno, Nevada (Zone 6a)
Yellowing and blotchy leaves sounds like stress. Stress can be caused by a number of things and transplanting is hard on lemon trees. Did you amend the soil when you planted it? If so, with what? Give it time and water it on a regular schedule so that it never dries out too far (conversely, please don't drown it). Do NOT fertilize until you see the start of new growth. (Fertilizer tends to increase the shock.)

I couldn't really see in the pictures, but the curled leaves in the pictures and your description of spiders everywhere sounds a lot like spider mites. Ants crawling into the tree suggest aphids or another "everything is sticky" sort of bug. Bugs will cause yellowing and discoloration as well.

As a start for bugs, wash your plant with insecticidal soap, get all the leaves top and bottom and the whole branches. Follow the container instructions and do it when the sun is NOT on the tree. Otherwise the soap and water will act like a lens and burn the leaves. Then, wait and see what the tree does.
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