Ask a Question forum: What's Up With My Lemon Tree

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Ontario
radojady
Oct 6, 2017 9:45 PM CST
My Lemon tree was grown from seed, and has been growing very slowly. I notice these clusters where it seems it wants to grow a lot but it stays a cluster of no growth. The plant looks okay but looks nothing like a normal "lemon tree" I see online. Any ideas here guys? (1.5 years old)
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[Last edited by radojady - Oct 6, 2017 9:54 PM (+)]
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Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Oct 7, 2017 8:48 AM CST
Hi and welcome, radojady. Another (transplanted) Canadian here, now living in Florida, land of citrus trees.

May I ask what you're using to fertilize your lemon tree? Citrus have specific needs as far as micronutrients go, so just a 'regular' house plant fertilizer doesn't really cut it for citrus. You can order citrus-specific fertilizer online if it's not available from your local tropical plant dealer (possibly a rarity in Canada, eh?)

Did you have your lemon tree outside to enjoy the direct sunlight for the summer months? They do love lots of heat and humidity and that's the main growing season for citrus, even down here in "always warm" Florida. (not always, btw) If not, you should plan to do so next year, as soon as the night temperatures are reliably above 50deg. F.

When it's indoors for the cold months, do you have a nice sunny window location for it? It will also need some supplemental lighting to extend the day length of 'sunlight' for it since your sun up there is weak at best in winter, and your days are very short. down here, even in December, we get over 3 hours more daylight per day than you do.

One more thing to keep an eye on - be sure to try and keep the stem base of the tree as dry as possible. When you water the plant, pour the water out near the perimeter of the pot. It will seep into all the soil anyway but if the trunk of citrus are constantly wet they are susceptible to a fungal infection commonly known as "foot rot" (it's Phytopthera actually). If you see cracking and weeping at or near the base of the plant, it's time to start a new seedling because that is fatal.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Ontario
radojady
Oct 7, 2017 11:58 AM CST
Thanks so much for the reply! My setup is indoor with a grow light and daily misting and watering when dry. I use the hot water tank room which stays a steady 25-30 Celcius throughout the winter, and it goes outside during the summer when it's no colder than 15 C at night. I noticed it seems to grow during the winter months, which I am guessing is a natural cycle from the southern hemisphere geographically. I originally grew it spring of 2016. It's already back inside. I repot every 3-5 months and for fertilizer it's nothing special, just a balanced mix like a 10-10-10. I can invest in the special fertilizer if that's the issue but more so wondered! It grew well last year then I topped it and it's been slow ever since but is bushing out as I'd hoped. Humidity is usually 40-50% which is the best I can do, but I try to makeup transpirtation through misting. Let me know if you have any insight! I've grown everything but citrus is something that's stumped me. It looks like it's fully loaded and ready to explode with life and growth. I can see the new shoots all in a cluster and ready to go but it's just stuck. Smiling It is also about a forearms length from the grow light (everything else works well at same distance, I've got a massive pepper harvest this year). One thing I may add is that a new branch formed and tried to shoot straight up in a fast growth phase but it will not start new growth in other parts of the tree, it is sort of stubborn? This isn't a serious issue but I thought I'd finally ask instead of wonder! This is just a fun hobby because someone bet me I couldn't get a lemon to grow in Canada Smiling Thanks!
[Last edited by radojady - Oct 7, 2017 12:04 PM (+)]
Give a thumbs up | Quote | Post #1562284 (3)
Name: Elaine
Sarasota, Fl
The one constant in life is change
Cat Lover Master Gardener: Florida Tropicals Multi-Region Gardener Vegetable Grower Region: Florida
Herbs Orchids Birds Garden Ideas: Level 2 Garden Sages Celebrating Gardening: 2015
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dyzzypyxxy
Oct 7, 2017 12:16 PM CST
Yes, try the citrus specific fertilizer, and it also may need more light than a grow light a foot away or more. Real sunlight through a window would be better, and be sure it has enough hours of light as well. Citrus grow here everywhere, and we do get cool and dry in the winter, with nights in the 60's very common. So keeping it completely warm day and night isn't as important as lots of bright light.

In your picture it looks like it's in a really large pot - did you just re-pot it recently? That's a vey large pot for such a small tree. I'd leave it for an extra year in that pot. You may be setting it back by transplanting so often.
Elaine

"Success is stumbling from failure to failure with no loss of enthusiasm." –Winston Churchill
Ontario
radojady
Oct 7, 2017 1:50 PM CST
You're absolutely right about the pot :/ haha, it's a long story but that just happened last night while repotting with my daughter, I asked her to grab a pot and that's what we have for now! As per the light I think you are right. I used to have two grow lights together but one broke so I'm down one at the moment but I should be replacing soon. The reason why I don't leave it at the window is mainly because we have 2 cats and they eat everything and knock it over constantly, and I read that lemon tree is a no no for cats so I stayed away, plus we live in a bad apartment building that only gets 4 hours of direct sunlight :(, gotta work with what we got! I'm absolutely going to leave the lemon tree in this pot for another year possibly 2 depending on growth, and I'll be investing in the special fertilizer. Thank you ever so much for the tips! P.S. Send me some citrus with seeds inside!!! XD

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