Hamlin Orange- sudden leaf drop

alh_in_flMarch 11, 2013

I'm in northern Florida, zone 8b. We can grow hardy citrus here.

Over the last week and a half, my small Hamlin Orange tree has lost nearly all of its leaves. Up until then it was very healthy-looking, with a load of green oranges, a load of blossoms, and some new green growth.

Now all the old leaves have gone, the newer ones are curling a little, and the blossoms are dying. I've had the tree outside in a pot for about a year. I was going to plant it in the ground once the blossoms were done. The branches are still green.

It would put it down to the crazy temp fluctuations we've had over the last month (from 85 degrees to 30 degrees in two days, for example) but my other citrus is fine.
The other citrus is: Duncan Grapefruit in the ground, Satsumas in the ground, Calamondin in a pot, and Sanguinella blood orange in a pot. Maybe they were just in the right location and/or the right variety of citrus that it didn't bother them so much?
I have not been watering it any differently than usual. I did give it a little citrus fertilizer a couple weeks ago but the other citrus got fertilized too with no ill effects

What do you all think? And do you think the tree will recover?
Thanks,
Ann in Alachua County FL

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Doglips(8b/9a)

My initial guess would be root rot exaserbated by cold weather.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 8:14AM
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alh_in_fl

Yikes, root rot? I thought that would cause a more gradual decline in health? This tree was beautiful until a couple of weeks ago.

If it *is* root rot, will transplanting it to a well-drained location in the ground save it?

FWIW it appears the leaves have stopped dropping. The remaining leaves (mostly new growth but some old ones) look normal and healthy.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 11:08AM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

First thing to do would be to carefully slip it out of its pot to inspect the roots. If you find rot, trim the dead roots away and re-pot in a fast-draining mix of coarse, durable, porous ingredients.

Josh

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 12:55PM
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love_the_yard(z9A Jax FL)

Citrus Greening.

Here is a link that might be useful: Citrus Greening of Concern to Gardeners

    Bookmark   March 16, 2013 at 5:04PM
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alh_in_fl

Citrus greening is supposed to have yellowing leaves as a first symptom. Mine were green one day, and dying the next.
Still hoping it will come back...

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 12:55PM
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