Group Title: Circular
Title: Growing potted citrus
CITATION THUMBNAILS PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00084307/00001
 Material Information
Title: Growing potted citrus
Alternate Title: Circular ; Florida Agricultural Extension Service
Physical Description: 1 folded sheet : ill. ; 23 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Lawrence, Fred P
Jackson, Larry Keith, 1939-
University of Florida -- Agricultural Extension Service
Publisher: Agricultural Extension Service, University of Florida
Place of Publication: Gainesville, Fla.
Publication Date: May, 1965
 Subjects
Subject: Citrus -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Container gardening -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
Statement of Responsibility: Fred P. Lawrence, Larry K. Jackson.
General Note: "May, 1965."
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00084307
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 82158678

Full Text
MAY, 1965


GROWING POTTED


FRED P. LAWRENCE
LARRY K. JACKSON


AGRICULTURAL EXTENSION SERVICE
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA, GAINESVILLE


CITRUS








GROWING POTTED CITRUS


by Fred P. Lawrence
and Larry K. Jackson


Most varieties of citrus can be
grown in containers, such as pots
or tubs, with a fair degree of
success.
The potted citrus trees of com-
merce are usually produced from
rooted cuttings. Plants produced
in this manner can be adapted to
pot culture and will usually flower
and produce fruit within a few
months to two years. Most varie-
ties of citrus grown from seeds re-
quire much longer to fruit and it
is very unlikely that they will ever
fruit as a potted plant. Budded
trees can be used but they are more
expensive to produce and require
more time to bear than cuttings.

Varieties
A number of orange, grapefruit,
lemon and mandarin trees are prop-
agated under mist and sold as
rooted cuttings. The calamondin
(C. mitis) is the most popular
variety currently offered for sale.
It is popular because it is ever-
bearing and may have blossoms,
green fruit and mature fruit on
the tree at the same time. The
small size and bright orange color
of the fruit make them most attrac-
tive. The fruit is highly acid and a
good substitute for lemons.

Repotting
Potted citrus can be purchased in
containers varying in size from a
two-inch pot to a four-foot tub.
The most popular container is a
two-inch pot.
Small containers and plants are
popular because they can be
wrapped in plastic sacks to retain
the moisture, placed in a fairly
sturdy cardboard box and displayed
in shops and/or shipped to the
consumer.
Such plants should be trans-
planted into six- to ten-inch stand-
ard pots or deep planter (at least
eight inches deep) as soon after
purchase as possible. Wood or plas-
tic pots will do nicely so long as
ample drainage openings are pro-
vided in the bottom or flush with
the base of the container. Clay pots
are less satisfactory because the
soil in them dries very rapidly and
the watering problem is greatly
accentuated.


Fig. 1-A typical soil arrangement when plants
are repotted includes 1 inch of gravel mulch
at top, then potting soil, then 1 inch of gravel
at bottom of pot. Drainage holes should be
1/8 to /4 inch.
Citrus can be grown in almost
any well drained soil. A mixture
of equal parts by volume of Ger-
man peat, horticultural grade per-
lite and a good garden loam makes
a superior medium. Avoid sticky
clays, but crumbly clays are satis-
factory. A mixture of peat and
perlite alone is unsatisfactory. This
mixture is so light the plants tend
to blow over. And, nutritional prob-
lems often develop in this mixture.
When transplanting, do not dis-
turb the soil or roots. Place the
plant into the new pot or container
that has been partially filled with
soil or a rooting medium such as
described above. Use, as near as
possible, the same medium in
which the plant was initially grown.
It is virtually impossible to satis-
factorily water a pot plant con-
taining two separate soil mixes.


Growing
Citrus is not well adapted as a
house plant. It thrives best out-of-
doors in the direct sunlight or half
shade. Trees need all the sunlight
possible when grown indoors. Dur-
ing summer months, plants can be
kept outdoors in partial sun (never
move a plant from little or no sun
into direct sun for extended pe-
riods). Shift them out-of-doors on
warm winter days.
A temperature range of 70 F. to
900 F. is desirable. Citrus does not
grow at temperatures below 55" F.
Temperatures below 40 F. for pro-
tracted periods of time are likely
to be harmful.
Water the plant as needed, thor-
oughly wetting the soil (don't for-
get to place it where excess water
can drain out). Excess water will
kill the plant as quickly as too lit-
tle water. In air-conditioned homes
in the summer or heated homes in
the winter, the tree will usually re-
quire more frequent watering. Al-
low the surface inch of soil to
become dry before watering. When
the soil feels damp, water is not
needed. It is well to occasionally
wash off the leaves with a water
spray or damp cloth. Dusty leaves
usually result in mite and scale
infestations.
Potted citrus requires fertilizer.
This is more often overdone than
underdone. A good rule of thumb
is to fertilize sparingly and fre-
quently. It is suggested that a
small amount of water-soluble fer-
tilizer be applied every five weeks.
(Use these according to instruc-
tions on the container.) If the
mature foliage is deep green the
tree is receiving ample fertilizer. A
pale color usually can be corrected
with fertilizer. Excess fertilizer may
result in a high salt concentration
in the soil and death of the plant.
Slight over-fertilization results in
excessive vigor and less flowering.

Potted citrus often becomes
"leggy" when grown in the house.
To overcome this the plant should
be pruned back fairly heavily by
cutting the entire top back about
one-third. The resulting plant will
"thicken" and become bushy. Fer-
tilization should be reduced follow-
ing such a pruning until one flush







or growth has come out and ma-
tured.

When plants are grown in six- to
eight-inch pots, the top outgrows
the root system in about two years.
Such a plant can be rejuvenated
and will last another one to two
years if it is pruned back about
two to three inches above the
ground. No fertilizer should be
added for two months and care
should be taken not to over-water
for there are no leaves to utilize
the water and fertilizer; however,
the soil should not be permitted to
dry out completely. This should be


done at the close of winter. Even
then, it may take a full month be-
fore sprouts come out from the
stump.
Pests
There are few diseases that will
attack potted citrus, so long as the
tree receives proper care. This is not
so in the case of insects and mites,
but these seldom kill a plant. Un-
fortunately, most insects and mites
that attack citrus in the home are
microscopic in size and must be ob-
served with a reading glass or hand
lens of at least six-power magnifi-
cation.


Insects or mites should be sus-
pected when a plant, receiving good
care, begins to have pale or gray
foliage or drops its leaves. If this
occurs, the local garden supply
dealer should be consulted. Most
garden supply dealers carry aerosol
insecticides that are safe to use on
house plants. NEVER use a house-
hold spray on plants. Such sprays
are usually suspended in kerosene,
oil or other carriers that will seri-
ously injure the plant. Keeping the
leaves clean is the best preventa-
tive.









I


READ THE LABEL ON EACH PESTI-
CIDE CONTAINER BEFORE EACH
USE. Heed all cautions and warnings.

STORE PESTICIDES IN THEIR
ORIGINAL, LABELED CONTAIN-
ERS. Keep them out of the reach of
children and irresponsible people.

APPLY PESTICIDES ONLY AS DI-
RECTED.


DISPOSE
SAFELY.


OF EMPTY CONTAINERS


COOPERATIVE EXTENSION WORK IN
AGRICULTURE AND HOME ECONOMICS
(Acts of May 8 and June 30, 1914)
Agricultural Extension Service, University of Florida,
Florida State University and United States Department
of Agriculture, Cooperating
M. O. Watkins, Director


('EF UI NG ANY

04 '


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