Monday, January 19, 2015

Citrus Care

This is the time to take care of your citrus trees that are dormant.  You may have noticed that some of the limbs are dead:  cut them off.  Trim the branches as little as possible but some of the branches may have gotten too long or too tall for what the tree can support.  This especially true for the Satsuma trees.

Some of the grapefruit is ready for harvesting.  One of our grape fruit trees has grown very large and tall but it is healthy and producing more fruit than we can eat during this season.  We are going to leave it alone.  The other tree is small and had a lot of dead limbs that needed to be removed.  It is more exposed to the elements.

If the citrus trees are blooming before its time, it may be because of lack of water in the previous months.  It may take care of itself, bloom again, and produce fruit.  The fruit may not be as large or as plentiful or as sweet as before.

At the Back Forty, we have just as many problems as the large Florida growers do.  The citrus trees do require attention at all times and it is best to address whatever problem may occur  Unfortunately, diseases do spread.

After the cutting and trimming, we sprayed the trees with horticultural oil.  We soaked the trees in oil.  It is not a pesticide but it smothers eggs, mites, insects and so much more.  As a result, the one Satsuma tree that was sprayed (so far) came out looking dark green and shiny.  The oil had a chance to soak in because there was no rain and the temperature was mild.  We used the All Season's Spray Oil that is also recommended for other fruit trees.

It is not necessary that the ground around the citrus trees are free from weeds but it is recommended.  The tree roots are shallow but it is advisable to keep the weeds out because they may trap and hold insects and create root diseases and I don't want to feed the weeds.

It is also recommended that you do not mulch around the citrus trees.  If you do, keep it light and keep it at least one foot away from the trunk.

When fertilizing, use whatever is specifically recommended for citrus because it contains trace elements that are not present in common garden fertilizer.  There are several brand names for the fertilizer and follow the instructions as to when to fertilize and how much to use.  We like to fertilize more often than a lot at one time.  We feel that it is better absorbed and less of a shock for the trees.

Thank you for visiting my blog.

No comments:

Post a Comment