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The characteristics of the lemon tree
- Type: fruit tree
- Height: 2 to 5 m, 5 to 10 m
- Flower colors: white, dew
- Fruit name: lemon
- Desired exposure: sunny
- Type of soil: well drained
- Foliage: persistent
- sanitizer: no
- diseases: aphids, tristeza
- variety: Menton lemon tree, Ota lemon tree, Citrus limon…
Origins and peculiarities of the lemon tree
Thelemon, or citrus limon in Latin, is a tree or shrub of the rutaceae family. The lemon tree is classified among the citrus trees. Originally, the lemon tree comes from tropical regions in which the rainfall is high, it likes to live in a soil always fresh and well drained.
Visually, the lemon tree has a more or less irregular and bushy habit, and is distinguished by a very shiny evergreen, with lighter leaves, longer and wider than those of the orange tree. During its flowering, the lemon tree is covered with very fragrant white or pink flowers, of which only 1% hardly will give fruit ... the famous lemons, oblong fruits of green color when they are young then yellow at maturity, whose size can vary between 8 and 20 cm long.
If lemon is a fruit present on market stalls all year round, it is no coincidence, since the lemon tree has the particularity of fruiting several times a year!
The growing potted lemon tree is very common among individuals (it is even the citrus fruit which is the most successful), who particularly appreciate the Citrus limon "Meyer" variety, very rustic.
Planting and growing lemon trees
Even if the lemon tree requires a lot of sun, its cultivation is relatively easy. The lemon tree in a pot grows quite well indoors, it is however necessary to take care of the good watering because the plant needs water as soon as its soil is dry. For it to flourish optimally, it is better to avoid proximity to heat sources such as a radiator.
For easy cultivation, plant lemon trees in spring when frosts are no longer to be feared. In the south of France, the lemon tree can be planted in the ground, provided you choose a location in the sun, sheltered from too strong winds, drafts, and of course from the cold! As far as the ground is concerned, the lemon tree prefers rich, sandy, airy and above all well-drained soils: in the event of stagnant water in the soil, the tree is unlikely to bear fruit.
In other regions, it is advisable to return the potted lemon trees winter because this fruit tree fears frost.
Pruning, caring for the lemon tree and harvesting lemons
In terms of size, the lemon tree should be cut about a month after each new shoot appears to obtain good fruiting. Their length should be reduced to around 20 cm by cutting over a leaf. It takes about 5 sizes per year.
The harvesting lemons takes place as they reach maturity. If they come off easily, it means they are very ripe.
Lemon tree diseases and pests
Like many citrus trees, lemon trees fear mealybugs. A liquid solution to add to the irrigation water helps to control these small pests which can kill the fruit tree if it is not treated.
Aphids are also insect pests of lemon trees and the moniliose rot lemons on their branches. Fortunately, there are many fertilizers and solutions to prevent these diseases and repel these invasive insects that could affect your lemon tree.