Spotty Yellow Leaves on a Young Meyer Lemon?

JessicasgrowincitrusApril 12, 2011

Curious to know if anyone can help me determine what is causing the yellowing spots on the leaves of my meyer?

I transplanted it about a month ago into the gritty mix, and water it roughly every three days per the stick-in-the-soil method. But it seems that these yellow spots are not going to go away.

I am using 1/4 t.FP diluted in one gallon of water per the instructions with 1 t of vinegar in the water too. So I am guessing it is not a nutrient issue...

I am stumped.

Front of leaves up close:

Back of leaves up close: The sun is shining through them, so it may be slightly exaggerated, but they are still not a nice deep green like they are suppose to be....

Your thoughts?


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Laura, contact me off forum and we can chat about that.

There are a few possibilities and I can get details from you..I have no time lately to be here, but soon I hope.
Also, I would post this at the container forum since this one seems to have very little action lately. You will get a much faster response there, especially from Al.


    Bookmark   April 13, 2011 at 4:05PM
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When was the last time you flushed out the container with clear water? Looks like soluble salts are starting to build up in the root zone.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2011 at 6:49PM
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I have 3,000 Improved Meyer Lemon trees on my farm in Guatemala, plus 84 trees in a budwood grove (Mayan Meyer Lemons, Guatemala) I would say in all likelihood the problem is the pot. I know they commonly sell Meyers on a dwarf rootstock for pots; but the reality is that it only survives in pots.. and that with very special care... The tree will not thrive or ever reach any portion of its potention without being in the ground, with fertilizer 3 times per year.

    Bookmark   April 13, 2011 at 10:12PM
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Funny you mention that. The little bugger already started to get spider mites so about two weeks ago--into the shower it went. It was really well rinsed out at that time. The tree has only been in this pot with the Gritty Mix for about a month. Do the salt buildups really happen that quickly? Could it be that I should be alternating FP and just plain water every other watering?

Hi Mike!

I will drop this post on the container forum too in hopes of finding Al. Hope all is well!

    Bookmark   April 14, 2011 at 9:22AM
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Hi Jessica!

No, salts are not an issue unless of course you gave your plants sips for weeks and over fertilized..
In fact I was going to tell you to check for pest Jessica. In particular spider mites.

I have the feeling your plant is still adjusting to the mix along with environmental or cultural changes.
It may and not taking up nutrients for some resason.

Some of the very top pictured leaves also look as if something was sucking the moisture out of the leaves which is why they look puckered a bit.

Is the plant outside now? What temps are you getting?

Also, there is no need to water with vinegar right away, not that is will cause any harm, but the mix you started out with started out at a good acidic level. It will take a while before you notice issues with any mix, unless of course your water is very alkaline. Have you had your water tested or called the local municipal water provider to find out what it is at? Mine is at 8.5

I remember that happening to my leaves while I had spider mites, when I forgot to add gypsum to my mix before using FP, when the nights were too cold, when I introduced my plants too quickly to sun outdoors, and when the temp swings were to drastic, which can cause nutrient delivery problems which in tune can cause an Iron, Mg, or Nitrogen problem

Were the leaves sort of looking like that before you transplanted?

Eventually, it corrected itself. Yes, posting at the container forums will give you many more ideas too. This may be a matter of a process of illumination.

I would start with concentrating on keeping your plant anywhere where it gets lots of sunlight and consistent temps, along with a check over for pest and feed well.
All should fall together perfectly and you should see a stark improvement. Do not even think about worrying about the mix, since I can assure you it is just perfect.


    Bookmark   April 14, 2011 at 10:39AM
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Hi Mike!

I have been trying to find a photo of this little tree prior to the transplant, but I am having a hard time. The only images I can find are these:

These images do not really show the leaves all that well. I think I remember seeing the veins in the leaves early on, but not to the extent that I see now, and there were no yellow spots on it. I would not have purchased it if that had been the case. So I think most of what I see now has developed since I transplanted the tree.

The plant is still living in the window. We are having one of the wettest and coldest April's in a very long time. The temps range between 40 and 55 degrees throughout the day. I am not going to put it out until we maintain at least 55 (even better 60) at night. �.We had a dusting of snow last week and frequent hail storms lately.

I will omit the vinegar in the next gallon of water/FP I mix. I still plan on putting all my plants into the shower every month or so to give the soil a good rinse, and remove all the dust that accumulates.

I did not add Gypsum to my mix! I thought that was not required in the Gritty Mix, only 5:1:1! Is that something I should look into doing now?

I really want to get some more trees, but the ones that are coming into the hardware stores in my area so far have been very mangy specimens. I am thinking of buying my trees from Four Winds. They are expensive, but after all I have been through lately I would rather get quality trees so I have a better chance.

I want to try my hand at a WA Navel Orange, Bearass Lime, and a Variegated Pink Lemon. *Supposedly* those are the easiest to grow indoors. We'll see�

    Bookmark   April 14, 2011 at 3:17PM
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Hey Jessica:

Don't worry about the coloring of those leaves. That has happened to mine before due to the reasons I gave you already.
They will eventually correct themselves with using FP and as soon as they start to take off with all the right conditions you are giving them. They will turn green before summers end or be replaced with much greener ones if they should shed. Watch for new growth since this is a great sign that you are doing right for it.

The temps have to be above 55 for the roots to continually take up nutrients and in a consistant manner.

If you are doing eevrything right, it can take a while for plants to exhibit difficencies after they have not been recieving proper nutrition before you bought them, and a bit of a while for them to respond to great cultural habits which I think you've got! Those leaves may always look that way and or green up. but like I said, it's the new growth you are to watch.

Dont' worry. As long as you are not over watering or under watering it and providing good light, it should do well for you.

lol. I will often buy citrus I feel bad for in not to good of shape, and bring them back to superb condition in the mix with the same fertilizer you are using.
I find it quite rewarding and quite interesting to see them respond after they have been treated worse than what I provide for them...
The ones you buy at less cost and not to good of shape can be a great practice run to bring them back to optimal condition before you invest in more expensive ones.

I know YOU can do it my friend! Patience.


    Bookmark   April 14, 2011 at 4:06PM
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