Growing Orange trees: all things that you need to know

orange tree

Orange is a Citrus family plant and one of the most commonly cultivated fruits in the world. They thrive better in a warm climate. Like any other citrus fruit, growing orange trees is easy. The orange tree is a low maintenance plant and it is possible to grow them indoor, in small spaces or even inside a greenhouse.

If you are planning to grow your own orange trees for an endless supply of fresh orange juice, here are some essential things you should know about growing orange trees.

orange juice growing orange trees
Image by Pixabay

Where do orange trees grow?

Orange trees grow almost anywhere but they grow better in places with warm weather. They thrive in temperatures between 55 and 100 degrees Fahrenheit and survive at 35 to 50 degrees Fahrenheit during the winter season.

If the weather is colder where you live, it is best to keep the tree indoor to protect it from frost. And take them outside when it’s warmer.

When is the best time to plant orange trees?

An orange tree can be planted all year round. However, it is advisable to plant them at the beginning of spring. This gives the tree enough time to acclimatize before winter.   

How long does it take for an orange tree to bear fruit?

orange tree
Image by Pixabay

The orange tree produces fruits depending on your planting process.  A tree grown from seeds might take up to 15 years to produce fruits. Buying tree from a local nursery and transferring the plant to your garden might take between 3-4 years. And grafting orange tree from rootstock might only take 3 years to start bearing fruits.

What type of soil is best for orange trees?

Citrus fruits survive better in the slightly acidic soil. For orange trees, a soil pH (level of acidity) of 6.0 to 7.5 is recommended.

What kind of fertilizer to use on orange trees?

Slightly nitrogen rich or balance NPK fertilizers are great for orange trees and other citrus trees.

How long does an orange tree live for?

An orange tree can live between 50-100 years when given proper care. Citrus trees, including orange, are known for long life span and it’s not uncommon to hear orange trees that live more than a hundred years.

How do you plant an orange tree?

There are 3 ways to plant an orange tree.

1. Grafting or budding orange tree

Grafting is a horticultural process wherein two plants are joined together to grow as one. Scion – which is the upper part of the plant – is attached to the lower portion of the plant known as rootstock. Horticulturists use this process when it is impossible to grow a plant through seeds.

Budding, on the other hand, is a form of grafting best suited for citrus trees like orange. You can do this if you already have orange trees in your backyard and you want to plant more trees. Or if you have a neighbor who is willing to give you scion and rootstock for budding. Some local nurseries might be able to help you graft materials as well.

  • Select a healthy orange tree that you wish to cultivate.
  • Prepare the scion and rootstock. Remove any leaves or torn on the branch.
  • Using a knife, make a one-inch vertical cut on the rootstock and at the bottom of the cut, make a horizontal cut. Try to avoid cutting the entire branch. This should create an inverted “T” on the rootstock.
  • Cut a one-inch bark from a budded twig or scion.
  • Insert the bark in the rootstock “T” cut.
  • Wrap the graft for 30 days.

To learn more about grafting orange tree, you can check this tutorial video.

2. Using seeds

bowl of oranges
Image by Wikimedia

Using the seed is the traditional way of planting orange trees. However, keep in mind that it takes years to see the tree grows if you choose to start from the beginning. Success rate of planting orange tree is also lower if you use seeds and especially if you are a beginner. It is more challenging to grow trees from seeds as it is more susceptible to diseases. Also, even if the seeds might come from a good orange fruit, it doesn’t guarantee that it will produce the same result.

  • Buy healthy orange fruits in the supermarket. Make sure the orange fruits are not seedless.
  • Cut the orange carefully and avoid cutting the seeds. Select the undamaged seeds once you’re done.
  • Wash the seeds to remove any fungus or mold spores. Then soak the seeds in the water for 24 hours. Do not soak it longer than 24 hours.
  • Drain the water and transfer it to a prepared pot or containers.
  • Make sure the pot has good drainage holes and you put it in a place where it can get a constant supply of sunshine.
  • Water the seeds once to twice a week or once the soil starts to become dry.

3. Buying a tree from local nurseries

This is probably the easiest way to grow an orange tree. If you are not confident to do grafting or use seeds, then buying a tree from local nurseries is a good option. However, this doesn’t mean that the tree will just produce fruits on its own. An aftercare still remains important for your orange trees.

  • Citrus trees are not a fan of overwatering or underwatering. It is important to water the orange trees once or twice a week. Keep in mind that the goal is to preserve the soil from drying. So, adjust your watering schedule accordingly
  • The orange tree is sensitive to cold.  Try to place them where it can get sunlight for at least 8 hours. Keep them indoor if the temperature is colder.
  • Add fertilizers as needed.

 

How to grow lemon trees in a pot

lemon tree

Lemon is a popular fruit that people use for a variety of reasons. We use it for cooking, drinks, as a cleaning agent and as part of our beauty regimen. Lemons are also a good source of vitamins and nutrients. Its benefits are endless that it becomes an essential part of our grocery shopping list.

If you use lemon a lot, then growing lemon trees at home is a practical way to save money. Growing this citrus fruit is also not that hard. You can also plant the lemon tree in a pot or container. And if space is a problem, then growing lemons indoor is also possible.

Here is a complete guide on how to grow lemon trees in a pot.

lemon drink
Pixabay

Which variety of lemon trees is best to grow in a pot?

Meyer and variegated pink Eureka are varieties of the lemon family that are both suitable for containers and indoor. These lemon varieties don’t grow too high. They also both produce fruits all year round, especially when grown in a warm climate.

Meyer lemon is also sweeter than the regular lemon and is known as the easiest lemon tree to grow indoor. Eureka lemon, on the other hand, is more acidic than Meyer lemon. But like the rest of citrus family, both are sensitive to cold weather that it can’t survive below 20 degrees Fahrenheit for temperature.

What do you need?

  • A two-to three-year-old lemon tree that you can buy from a local nursery. You can also start with the seeds but it takes longer to see the tree grows. Lemon trees start producing fruits between 3 to 5 years old. So if you want to cut down the waiting time, selecting a plant that produces fruits in a shorter time is a better choice.
  • A medium-sized pot with drainage holes. Depending on how fast it grows, you might have to change the pots every couple of years. Just make sure that it is always bigger than the root ball of the tree.
  • A supply of slow-release fertilizer or liquid fertilizers to make sure the lemon tree gets constant nutrients.
  • Slightly acidic potting mix.
  • A constant supply of water and sunshine.

How to transfer the lemon tree to a new pot

lemon tree in a pot
Pixabay

1. When you remove the lemon tree from its nursery pot, make sure to avoid breaking the roots. Take out the roots from the soil carefully. Massaging the roots before you transfer it to the new pot, also helps absorb nutrients faster.

2. Fill the pot halfway with soil mix. Then, position the tree upright and fill the pot with the rest of the soil mix. Make sure that no roots are exposed outside the soil. Also, avoid putting soil on the branches as it can cause fungal infections to the tree.

3. Water the lemon tree immediately after transferring it. The soil must be damp enough but not waterlogged. This way, the soil is habitable enough for the new tree to adapt.

Tips on how to grow the lemon trees properly

lemon tree
Image by Hans | Pixabay

Aftercare is an important part of growing a healthy lemon tree. To ensure that your tree will produce fruits, it is a must that you follow the tips below.

1. Water the lemon tree once to twice a week. Avoid overwatering or under watering the plant as it will affect the fruit production. The drainage holes in the pot help avoid overwatering. But keep in mind that it is important to keep the soil from drying. Check the soil every few days. Stick your finger on the soil to check if it’s dry. If you notice that the soil is a bit dry, then it is time to water the tree again.

2. Potted lemon trees produce better when it’s fertilized properly. Using slow-release fertilizer helps the plant gets constant nutrients. It is also more practical as part of the maintenance process as you only need to apply it once a year. However, if you want to control more the number of fertilizers, then applying nitrogen-rich fertilizers every few months will work too.

3. Lemon trees are sensitive to cold weather and strong wind. So avoid placing them in windy areas and put them where it can get at least 8 hours of sunshine every day. If you are going to place the tree indoor, make sure it is located near a window to get proper sunlight.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10 creative ways to grow strawberries in small spaces

grow strawberry

A lot of people think that growing plants require big plots of land and space. So growing fresh vegetables, herbs, and fruits, such as strawberries, can seem out of reach. However, you don’t really need big space to grow your plants. You just need to be creative.

Strawberries are one of the fruits that don’t require a large space to grow. It is a low-maintenance compact fruit that you can grow in small containers. It is also everyone’s favorite!

So if you want fresh strawberries and you have limited space in your backyard, here are 10 creative ways to grow strawberries in small spaces.

1. Hanging Basket

If you have unused baskets, then it’s time to take them out and use them for growing your strawberry. You can hang the basket outside your window, outside walls, patio, small backyard or anywhere where there is enough sun for your plants. Aside from saving you space, it is also a good ornament.

What you need:

  • unused baskets
  • basket liner
  • bracket and hooks
  • wall plugs and screws (if you need to fix it on your wall)
  • compose
  • metal sanding file

You can watch the tutorial below on how to create a hanging basket for your strawberries.

2. PVC Pipes

Planting your strawberries in PVC pipe is not only practical for your space but also a cheap way to do it. PVC pipes are inexpensive, and it’s also sturdy. You can create strawberry towers out of these pipes, and you can either line it up by your fence or create beautiful garden columns out of them.

What you need:

  • PVC pipes
  • power drill
  • hacksaw
  • potting soil
  • lines, screws, and hooks (if you need to attach your pipes somewhere)
  • metal sanding file

For the complete tutorial, watch the video below.

3. Cement Block

Planting your strawberry in an unused cement block is another practical way to do it. Aside from the fact that they don’t consume too much space, it is also the easiest way to organize your plants. You just need to find a perfect spot to place them.

What you need:

  • cement blocks
  • plotting soil
  • metal sanding file

4. Pocket Planter

Do you have an old shoe organizer or any hanging organizers? You can also use this to hang your plants. The best way to do this is to hang it by your fence or by a wall to create a vertical garden. Aside from the fact that it saves space, this pocket planter will give your fence a new look.

What you need:

  • hanging organizers
  • plotting soil
  • metal sanding file
  • hooks, screw, and lines

For instruction on how to create a pocket planter using a hanging organizer, watch below.

5. Hanging Pots

Just like hanging baskets, pots can also be used to hang your strawberry plants. This also another good way to give vibrancy to your small garden or backyard.

What you need:

  • pots
  • basket liner
  • bracket and hooks
  • wall plugs and screws (if you need to fix it on your wall)
  • compose
  • metal sanding file

6. Recycled bottle planters

One of the cheapest ways to plant your strawberry is by using recycled bottles. It doesn’t only save you money, but you are also helping the environment. The best thing about recycled bottle planters is that there is no limit to what you can do it.

You can hang it by the wall or fence and create a vertical garden, or you can attach it in a pole and create a garden tower. You can also hang it like pots and baskets or pile them vertically in a ladder. The ideas are basically endless.

What you need:

  • used plastic bottles
  • compose
  • metal sanding file
  • lines, screws, paint, wood (depending on where you are planning to put it)

7. Barrels Planters

Old wooden wine barrels are another space-saving containers that you can use for your strawberry garden. Wine barrel has the timeless and rustic look to it that it works well with any garden theme.

What you need:

  • old wine barrel
  • compose
  • metal sanding file

8. Ladder Planters

As they say, if you can not go wide then go tall instead. The idea is to create a planter box and put them on a ladder. This way, you can save space by aligning your planter box vertically. You can use any type of ladder. Just make sure it has enough space to handle your planter box or pots.

What you need:

  • ladder
  • compose
  • metal sanding file
  • planter box or pots

For the complete tutorial on how to create ladder planters, watch the video below.

9. Railing Planters

The best way to give your deck or porch railing a new look is to put railing planters on them. This doesn’t only save you space but it gives those boring rails color. And what’s the best way to enjoy your drinks on your deck? You will have an access to fresh strawberry to compliment your drinks.

What you need:

  • a wooden pallet or planter box
  • compose
  • metal sanding file
  • bracket and hooks
  • wall plugs and screws
  • power drill
  • hacksaw

10. Wooden Pallet

The wooden pallet planter is a good way to organize your strawberry plants. You can either make a garden bed or a vertical planter. The frames also help to cut down the time spent weeding as they help protect your plants from the bad weeds. To make this, you can either repurpose an old pallet or buy ready-made ones.

What you need:

  • wooden pallet
  • compost
  • metal sanding file
  • bracket and hooks
  • wall plugs and screws
  • power drill
  • hacksaw

Growing strawberries doesn’t have to take up a lot of space. And it doesn’t have to be expensive either. All you need is creativity and lots of sunshine.