I am so ready to throw in the in the towel and toss my plants!

meyermike_1micha(5)April 26, 2014

Do you have any idea of how sicking it is to have months upon month of cold and hardly any sun?

My trees have little chance to do much up here in my area unless I use artificial lights for months which cost an arm and a leg.. It's depressing...

Here is is almost the end of April and nothing but 40's and no sun insight for the next ten days..30's by night.

I am almost done...Without the warm long sunshine days, my trees skimp on growth and fruit...Nothing like the trees I am seeing in many here who live in warmer climates...I think I am just going to let them go.

Anyone else here feel the same? Anyone else tired of waiting on warm weather of lot's of sun to help them along? Anyone else limited to grow them the way you want?

I've accomplished what I need to know about growing citrus up here, and have been seasoned at it..But I am at the mercy of my ever changing weather to much colder temps for a much longer amount of time..Now I only enjoy two months of warm weather here.

I've already thrown away all my plumeria, desert roses and now tossing out some gardenia's. All need much better weather than I can offer anymore Citrus next


This post was edited by meyermike_1micha on Sat, Apr 26, 14 at 22:29

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Hey Mike I hear you I feel the same... my trees locked inside and all of us have had enough.... Thank God for perennials... otherwise I,ll be going nuts...
Just hang in there... we,re all on the same planet...

    Bookmark   April 26, 2014 at 10:42PM
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Hi Mike I am in the same vote as you it was a brutal winter clouds and cold and lots of snow now it is clouds and cold with lots of rain and they are calling for rain all next week . I actually saw a few snow flakes mixed in with the rain this morning UGH!! . I feel your pain hang tough we are almost there.I posted a similar message a couple of months ago when I actually mentioned I had to many trees and they were starting to die because there was simply not enough light for all of them . I lost 2 of my trees that I was very fond of . It was heart breaking and I was pooped on for mentioning that maybe I had to many trees . Mike better days are ahead .You know we cannot rely on mother nature to give us our daily dose of sunshine that is why I do citrus because when I look at my trees I see sunshine , me tanning at the pool and a tall ice cold glass of margaritas . Mike how are your trees doing in th GH. Mine are hanging in there but they need a desperate washing bugs are having a field day with them. Still way to cold to bring out. What ever you do please don't give up on your hobby this is what helps us get through are terrible winters.This might turn out to be a great summer for are trees I heard they flower like crazy when they are stressed so I guess we are in for a ton of blooms. Hang in there.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 12:31AM
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Mike look it is sunny today. They said it was going to rain today what a nice surprise .One thing we know for sure we will never have another winter like this one that just passed. I think that was a once in a lifetime winter at least that is what the meteorologist are saying that's a good thing , if we can get through that we can get through anything . I brought the smaller trees outside to catch up on some rays. Shasta , blood , minneola and tango.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 12:35PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Don't give up, Mike!


    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 12:38PM
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Or maybe Mike we can do a lot more of these. Not saying give up on citrus , just trying something different for a change , something more for are climate. Picked up 2 cocktail trees 5 in 1's at Home Depot last weekend . They were on sale for $19.99 regularly $54.99 what a great deal. I bought a pear and a cherry. I already have a plum and a apple.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 12:52PM
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Hey, you could be living here, where that kind of weather is normal every year and citrus growing is only a fantasy.. I've seen frost in every month of the year and snow in 11 months of the year. I've seen July days that struggled to get above 50 degrees.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 12:55PM
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Josh...I don't know..lol
Everytime I look at my trees behind windows, I am reminded of just how long our cold weather lasts and how minute our warmth is..It get sickning after a while..
Here, it seems like you wait for ever for teh 50's at night and higher by day to arrive to give my trees just what they need to thrive...You know?

Brian....My goodness...You trees don't look so bad if you ask me after waiting so long. What a nice view too..I swear that you and I get the same weather, or at least I get yours after the fact..

I live to cold to the ocean to get any appreciatable warmth until at least July these years..It has changed a lot.
We use to get big ole Bermuda highs sitting right of the east coast that would usher in warmth as early as April...

Now we get big ole Canadian highs sitting of the north of us pushing the winds off the frigid ocean just about all year..It has changed a lot and I don't see things changing anytime soon...As far as I am concerened, with the ocean temps still remaing at a whopping 41 degrees and Easterly winds to North East , I can see frost in July!
Oh well, let's see what happens this year..
Seems like just as soon as my trees start responding to good ole warmth and lots of sun, it's time to bring them in again!

Josh, how have your trees doing these days? I think your weather warmed up weeks ago, right? Lucky you.
Just 30 miles west of me., away from teh sea breeze, it almost at least 15 degrees warmer then I.

Amberdim..You are so right..At least I have fragrant perennials I can leave outside that do well in pots to brighten my day..Those can handle cold for sure..The yard is looking good despite having to jail my citrus trees.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 12:57PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, Mike, the weather is cool again. We've had rain in the foothills and snow in the mountains. Right now it's just over 50F, with grey skies. The cloud cover is good, though, since it keeps the night temps slightly warmer. I did bring my pepper plants in last night, though (get yours started, too!).

My citrus are outside. My Lemons are flowering/fruiting, and my Moro has just opened its first few flowers of the season :-) I also planted one of my Pomelo seedlings in my brother's back yard in Sacramento.


    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 1:29PM
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..double post

This post was edited by amberdim on Sun, Apr 27, 14 at 20:47

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 8:28PM
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Mike, unless you are gardening in a jailhouse garden, you are free to move to warmer climates. If growing stuff is important to you (it is important to me) remember you only live once and sometime in order to be happy, you have to make changes in your life.
If you move to Texas I'll help you dig holes for your transplanted citrus.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 8:33PM
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Put it this way.

After this Winter, I am ready to give up gardening. My garden looks like Iwo Jima 1945.

But I suppose we are gluttons for punishment.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 8:53PM
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>> here, where that kind of weather is normal every year and citrus growing is only
>> a fantasy.. I've seen frost in every month of the year and snow in 11 months
>> of the year. I've seen July days that struggled to get above 50 degrees.

Places like that exist?

The thing that I find ironic is that many people here in Arizona have trouble growing citrus. Three or four years of awesome growth and one single dirty little frost zaps the poor thing on one of the few cold night of the year. It's like you get so complacent you forget to pay attention...

In a way there's not that much of a difference between a killing cold and a killing heat, but our micro-climates are all about the cold end of things.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 8:59PM
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tcamp30144(7B N.ATLANTA)

I'm just putting my trees out this week has been very bad winter. I have a plus it has been sunny this winter in Georgia but cold so I could keep trees ok happy with cfl lights and windows.almost lost a kumquart tree and lemon tree but I know what your saying.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 9:14PM
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I couldn't fight the fight you fight; it is enough I fight the battle every day against insect, fungi, diseases...
You have to decide for yourself if it is worth the struggle.

It is not for nothing that I live and grow in Guatemala.

If you want to live the rest of your life in a climate that is not hospitiable to people and plants, then you choose to struggle. If you have a choice, best to move to a warmer climate; if you have no choice, best to grow plants better suited to your climate..

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 10:14PM
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When Thoreau said, "Most men leads lives of quiet desperation" he was talking about farmers.
That's us.
This is planet earth, it is bad weather, bugs, rots, blights and a plague on us all.
Don't give up. Just when you think you've had enough, the clouds break, the sun shines and there are flowers everywhere.
Keep the plants alive as best you can and wait for better weather.

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 10:29PM
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Steve, Z (6Bground,5B roof) Cincy,OH

Growing under lights is not that expensive. 10 CFL's at 13 watts in a bright white or millar reflective room 8 FT cube will grow a lot of citrus trees just fine. There will even be room to grow your highly nutritious micro greens. As I do. Your lights put out 100% heat with 15% of that heat in the visible light spectrum. This heat warms the house so you don't have to burn as much oil. The value of the micro greens will surpass the cost of your electric.

I grow hardy chicago figs. I let the plant get frosted in the first HARD frost and put the tree in the garage. About February 28 I brought it inside and put it under 75 watts of CFL's. I grew my starts with the figs as well as my micro greens. My fig tree will be going outside along with it's 70 medium size figs. I got more moneys worth in high grade food than I spent in electricity.

There is a song about a disgruntled gardener sung by Lynn Anderson "I beg your pardon I never promised you a citrus garden.

Here is the secret. The fig tree goes dormant after the first frost you can't protect it against. When you got 2 month of cold left you bring it to good growth start. and set her out when it is safe.


Citrus is easy to winter over once you learn the tricks of your area.

I am pretty much there but do not have enough time right now and need to collect my notes.

Hang in there


Check out the song at this link

Here is a link that might be useful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WO4wcNVbYOQ&feature=kp

    Bookmark   April 27, 2014 at 11:56PM
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Dave in NoVA • 7a • Northern VA

Maybe you need to scale back a bit.

I only have two citrus. one is a Satsuma which winters in a cold garage (not below 50 degrees). It is starting to bloom now. It's an Armstrong and I get fruit in late September into October. It's great! It hardly ever drops leaves.

My other is a Centennial kumquat that STILL HAS SOME FRUIT on it. It's sitting near a sunny glass door. I'll move it outdoors soon.

I have no room for any more, but I'm happy with what I have.

Both plants can take just a bit of frost in case I happen to leave them out too late in Fall.

The Satsuma, I can leave out until the first fruits just start to ripen. They're delicious!

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 9:53AM
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I have resigned myself to plenty of evergreens in the yard. All else is a bonus.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 9:57AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Mike, I feel for you. Every winter you seem to struggle through the long and cold of it. Perhaps this is time to consider moving to a warmer climate? It seems you are so unhappy there, I gosh darn, life is just too darned short to be miserable. I understand being born and raised in S. California. My 10 years in N. Indiana was rough, topped by another 3 years in Maryland. By then, I was simply done with all the snow, ice and bitter cold winter temps. I was a very happy camper to move back to sunny California. If it is possible, perhaps you can consider making a change of geographical area, to a more temperate area??

Patty S.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 10:46AM
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RyanLo(NC 7B)

I agree with Dave in Nove, I think you (and others far out of citrus climate for that matter) need to at a minimum, stick with the most cold tolerant varieties - Satsumas Kumquats and some of the hybrids. Otherwise you are going to run yourself down. It is a vicious cycle, every winter you are on the brink of giving up - and many do.

Another option is build a well insulated and efficient greenhouse where you can artificially increase light levels and more importantly heat levels. This has a high cost associated, mostly for heating.

Out of climate citrus is very hard! Most people don't know when they start but it is very challenging. In the end its a decision you have to make for yourself.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 11:12AM
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Mike, I'm voting with Lucille and Patty, you need to move to a warmer climate unless something in your cold, frozen climate gives you enough joy to cancel out your citrus growing issues!

Good luck what ever you do though. Here on the Gulf Coast we have hurricanes to deal with and Patty has earth quakes I guess. Move to Oklahoma or Kansas and you get tornadoes. Get you a nice ranch along some fertile river valley and you get flooded out now and then.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 11:24AM
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puglvr1(9b central FL)

Hi Mike...SO Sorry!! I can only imagine what it must be like for you guys battling this miserable and dreary winter...Just know if you ever decide to move to FL there's plenty of room for you and your plants...Hang in there buddy!!

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 11:42AM
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This too shall pass. Mike, you have been a guru and an inspiration to so many here, it would be a shame to lose you. Here in Guatemala we have earthquakes and floods; and two wars per year... the rainy season fighting molds and weeds; and the dry season irrigating and finding enough pasture for the animals. So, you see even the best of places have troubles.

Hang in there; Spring is here.


    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 12:02PM
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Steve, Z (6Bground,5B roof) Cincy,OH

I am with RyanLo. Every time someone writes in saying I am new to citrus and want to try one, I write back telling how hard it is to container grow citrus north of zone 8. DON'T DO IT. I read up on citrus growing for a year to see if these catalog adds were honest on their easy growing of citrus clams.I got all kinds of positive feedback of YES YES YES from this forum. The answer is NO NO NO. When someone else asks about a citrus adventure up north I am going to post a thorough answer why it should not be done.

Please don't undermine me. It is unfair to the new people who might try something different instead. Citrus trees are very expensive and many of us don't want to spend money on something this hard to grow. Cincinnati caries blood orange, meyer lemon, and calamondin trees. Meyer lemon trees are extremely finicky and along with blood oranges are very hard to keep alive in low light winter time. East of the Mississippi river we can go months with out sun light. This is a death sentence tfor the Meyer and blood. As for the calamondin, EEEEE who would want something that chews there lips off and eats the enamel off their teeth. Last and most important. CITRUS FRUIT IS CHEEP CHEEP CHEEP. Grow a kumquat at best. The kumquat tree deals well with low light and adverse conditions. and the fruit goes for $7 per pound IF YOU CAN FIND IT.

Most important grow your citrus trees from seed and lose 300+ trees in your learning curve before you sink money into one, if you dare.

P.S. don't grow kumquat trees from seed. YOU'LL BE SORRY.

Proudly written by Steve A Poncirusguy

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 12:14PM
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If I may add my two-cents worth for discussion purposes.....I think it's a mistake to just tell someone don't do something. What's helpful is to inform folks who want to grow kumquat trees from seed that it may take many years to get fruit and the seed-grown plant's roots may not be as suited for local soil as grafted plats. The same goes for growing trees north of Zone 8. Some folks have different windows, different humidity, different tree varieties, and different reasons for growing plants. I propose it's more helpful to share your knowledge of your cicumstances than it is to just tell someone that growing a tree where natural light is scarce is a death sentence for the tree. That seems a bit dramatic in a world where we have access to growing lights. I personally don't think I would grow citrus up north because I personally have too many hobbies to devote that much time to my citrus but many do well at it for various reasons. I also would tell people the calamondin is easier to grow in some areas than some other citrus but it's very sour and some may prefer to use it in recipes than to eat it raw. I'm not suggesting that we shouldn't share our experiences...just suggesting that sharing the data and letting people apply that data to their unique situations might be most helpful.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 3:47PM
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Steve, Z (6Bground,5B roof) Cincy,OH

My trees are doing very well despite my nasty sun free winters. I have shared extensively what I have done to get this kind of growth. I'll do it again.




With in each of thes writing I have many links to how-to on setting up for success.

I never said don't do citrus up north I said don't tell people it is easy . IT IS NOT.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 4:22PM
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Right on Johnorange totally agree. I live 350 miles north of Mike ya are winters can be long but this winter was definitely an exception that's why we might seem down a bit but I know there are better winters ahead. I can't speak for Mike but I love all the four seasons and yes even winter. For myself it is the challenge I love . I love citrus trees and I don't know if it would be the same if I lived down south because the extreme challenge wouldn't be there. I do realize you guys have your major challenges also with greening , drought , fungus etc but I don't think it would be the same for me. No citrus plants are not that expensive the price of a fancy hanging basket that lives only for one summer season . We also get fruit up here on all my citrus , oranges ,lemons , limes , mandarins etc so I don't know why certain people think that we can only grow kumquats . You cannot make margaritas with kumquats.

Mike I was off today and cleaned up the greenhouse to my surprise 1 of the plants I thought I had lost was still alive my Meyer that made my week. I am so happy . Here is a picture of it it looks really rough lost all it's leaves on one side but it will come back.

    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 4:26PM
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Steve, Z (6Bground,5B roof) Cincy,OH


Beautiful tree What is obvious to the eye is hard to show in a picture.


Don't give up on citrus. You have mastered most of the problem. However consider doing other trees like hardy Chicago fig trees. I have just put mine out after 2 months under light to get her going.

When you have success like this it is a lot easier to forgiver your citrus trees. Keep on citrus-ing


    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 11:26PM
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The enthusiasm for citrus that you have demonstrated on this board in the past is inspiring! Gardening is full of ups and downs. Personally, I lost 10 of my 22 citrus varieties this winter. We had a cold spell down to the 20s. They actually were fine after then, but when it warmed up and started to rain, the peripheral damaged branches got infected with fungus that spread to the entire tree. Even my beautiful 6 foot kishu died.

I was extremely depressed for a while. After a bit of grieving, I remembered how much I love citrus. I remembered how those beautiful little orange fruits contrasted against the dark green leaves lighten up the winter days. While this winter was a major setback, I have learned from it and I still have plenty of varieties that are fine and thriving. In the end, give it some time and try to focus on why you have been passionate about citrus in the past. I think this will likely bring you back once the weather warms.

Good luck!


    Bookmark   April 28, 2014 at 11:42PM
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Good on ya Bret... I am on your wavelength

    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 12:08AM
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madferret(UK 8b-9a)

Come to sunny England instead! As bad as your winter had been I've had a good year and my plants are all doing well. I've got over wintered chilli plants with fresh green chillies already! Well except my troublesome grapefruit that refuses to grow. :)

Anyway you can't give up Citrus because then you'll have to change your username.

I do think you may have to think most sustainably though. Insulated greenhouse with proper heating etc etc. I'm sure their are probably (long term) cheaper solutions than what you've got ATM.


    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 5:43AM
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I'm afraid that all mine are now dormant since it's only 38 degrees out all day and the same tomorrow...

It's suppose to be 70 Thursday and then maybe they will croak from shock,,,

At least there are no bugs!

Then I want to thank everyone for your kind words...It's hard at times..It use to be fun when my summers were long and warm..Now they have been shriviling at an alarming rate these past few years and it stinks..
I'd move if I could but I care for my parents and they don't want to leave this area..

Growing these trees was fun when I could give them warmth more than I can now..My trees just don't like this weather anymore and I can't fit them all in a greenhouse..I would have to throw all my other tropicals out...Just do an Indian dance for me and hope that my warm summers return soon, will you?

All the weather poeple here blame it on the pollution in China causing disruption with the Pacifici flow which buckles the ejt stream to push cold air into north america at the starngest times...I'm not sure if there us hope if this is the reason..

But again, I will try and keep a postive attitude and listen to what all you good people and friends say..
How can anything survive living in like a cave most of the year...That is what it's like around these parts...One day of sun then days of drizzle and low clouds...

Orange..I am so happy for you..That is an awesome surprise...Love it! IT actually looks very nice...
Orange, the tree in the greenhouse is getting huge...I just can't reach it with all the other plants in the way..It shocked me..Thanks

John..Very good point and thanks..

Steve...Thank you

Patty...Good thought, I wish I could..

Nancy...Thanks for that:-))

Nick..Nice to see you..

And everyone else, what you say makes a ton of sense..I appreciate it once again..


This post was edited by meyermike_1micha on Tue, Apr 29, 14 at 16:13

    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 3:23PM
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Steve, Z (6Bground,5B roof) Cincy,OH


If you want to see how to do citrus easy and cost effectively and sill have a very classy looking setup, then click the link below. Pan down to the first picture. Click on that picture to see a photo album of how to set up your professional plant set up. He and I appear to be doing much the same thing . His setup is very professional looking while my setup uses scraps out of trash cans. and dumpsters. My setup looks that way to. Once you see his pictures you can see how to make something you would be proud to show off to company.


Here is a link that might be useful: http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/load/citrus/msg0414405929840.html?5

    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 10:06PM
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You threw out plants???? Would love to dumpster dive for that.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 11:10PM
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Don't give up! That's Mother Nature for you! You have to work with her for the love of plants.

    Bookmark   April 29, 2014 at 11:14PM
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I'm growing potted citrus in zone 3, so I know how that goes. My trees are still inside. It snowed yesterday. They don't seem to mind - they're in a south facing window with a fluorescent grow light hanging above. In fact my Meyer is pushing out growth regardless of being inside! It bloomed inside last Autumn, too.

However, I have just two trees I have to worry about. It's easy enough to keep them happy throughout winter here. I can't wait till I can put them outside and see them flourish.

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 11:06AM
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Mike your parents couldn't have a better care giver than yourself they truly are in good hands. Your right we do have the exact weather we have had 2 days of the wind coming off the Atlantic dam it's raw outside not to mention all the rain. The lemon tree has lost maybe half of its leaves since I washed it that was a before I washed it picture. The sides and the back are totally bare but I am sure it will survive. Your GH is probably like mine , I have 1 foot of free space in there to wiggle my toes. I can't even reach the fruit in the back to pick them and if I try I get a branch or thorn in the face and still I am always looking for more , is this an addiction. The funny thing is I don't even eat many of them just the limes and lemons for my beverages. I also plant a beautiful vegetable garden and do I end up eating the stuff no. If it doesn't look like a chicken wing or taste like a rib steak I won't touch it. How healthy am I. But darn I sure love growing things as you do. We all on this form have a special gift for growing and caring. You will always have your special gift for caring please don't give up your gift of growing . Looking forward to see your new tree

    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 5:02PM
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Steve, Z (6Bground,5B roof) Cincy,OH


It is OK to throw in the towel.

Just keep your citrus and tropical trees. Global warming is around the corner. Soon all your citrus tree will need to be planted in ground.


    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 5:11PM
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Steve..You are too funny..lol

Just because there is a supossed Global Warming going on, it doesn't mean that everyone will warm up..In fact certain area will of the earth will actually get colder and there are very drastic temp swings at times of the year when there shouldn't be..Like for instance..
38 degrees in July at my friends place in Vermont never seen before...
Tornados for the first tiem here cause by extremely unusual cold weather rushed in last June..

If anything, our summers are shrinking and winters are warming, except for this year of course..

Brian...When I first started with citrus trees about 30 years ago, our summers were long, hot and sunny..Always starting in April up until about the end of September...They were consistently warm.
You never had to worry about frost into June and certainly a heck of a lot more Bermuda highs which bring us summer..
Those days are gone..So anyone telling me that my weather is warmer than is years past is talking about winter than summer..It seems our weather is reversing...

I would not be surprised to see frost as late as the end of next month, and if it kills my trees so be it..I don't believe in having to haul in my plants when summer should be here..lol

I am hoping this is just a passing phase and mother nature shows us some pity...
While folks are suffering with tornados, floods, and earthquakes, I guess I should be grateful that all I have to deal with is the 30's today and grey skies...

Get this...The temps are suppose to rise sometime after midnight rapidly on the heels of storms to 25 degrees warmer for tomorrow...I can't wait for that..

I'll post some pics of my trees soon and the one I can't reach in the greehouse at this time...
I hear you on the room thing...lol
I do have a planted Lemon Meyer in the ground I have not been able to reach since winter began..It has grown a lot from what I can see..

I just picked up my Grapefruit tree from work so loaded with scale, I can't even see the twigs, branches or leaves..lol The scales are holding my whole tree together...I'll snap a shot of that..It is almost too funny to look at!


    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 7:04PM
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Mike I guess we are not alone with problems this winter and spring. I was watching the news tonight and was astonished with the flooding in Pensacola Florida and the devastating tornadoes in Arkansas my heart really goes out to these guys. Pensacola had more rain in 1hr than California receives all year wow. I just pray some of that moisture will eventually swing over to the west coast , poor California has been suffering . So I guess we all have something to complain about . Mike lol about your scale problem DITO same problem how dare they attack my lime tree!! Trust me when I get the lime tree outside they are going to get the flat setting on my garden hose which will probably end up sending them flying over to my neighbors yard.
I cannot live without a lime tree. My lemon was full of scale also past tense. The last time we had a spring and winter like this we had a scorching summer here's to hoping.

Cfox where in zone 3 do you live if you don't mind me asking . You are doing a astonishing job considering your conditions. Don't worry about the fertilizing they will let you know when they are hungry. If you want you can always add trace amounts every time you water and slightly more in the summer when they are outside. It really is a learning thing and everybody situation is different . I am sure you will have no problem. Wow citrus in zone 3 . I thought we were pretty special growing citrus in zone 5 you have us beat .


    Bookmark   April 30, 2014 at 8:22PM
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mksmth zone 6b Tulsa Oklahoma(6b)

Hey Mike.

Just wanted to say that years ago when I first found this forum your trees where what inspired me to grow what I have now. Your hard work and dedication to them is truly great. What you have been able to achieve in you zone is remarkable and something to be proud of.

I can completely understand your frustration because sometimes I ask myself why I put so much work into keeping something happy that really doesnt want to live here. Personally I enjoy the challenge. It gives my brain a work out to try and figure what does and doesnt work.

I hope to see you continue growing but completely understand if you take a break. Plus You wont be MeyerMike without a meyer lemon right? So you must keep at least one. LOL

hang in there buddy!


    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 9:44AM
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Hey MIke....Thanks a million! I had no idea I had that affect on you:-)

I am rethinking but I may have to move..I am trying to talk my parents into it..My mother was crying after that saying she could never leave everything here behind..

Maybe the Jet Strean and weather patterns will finally change and favor warmth in my area longer than it has...

Thanks so much pal..You are amazing.. and So are your trees...


    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 11:07AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Mike, good for you! I never EVER in a million years thought I'd live anywhere but the beaches of S. California. This little surfer girl never imagined that she'd be hauled completely across the country during her lifetime. It was a good thing, though. I learned to survive in all different climates, places and cultures. Your parents will thank you, if you move to a no-snow, no-ice climate. No more worries about slipping on the ice a breaking a hip or worse. Sitting out on your patio in January when it's a lovely 70 degrees, watching your citrus trees growing in the ground all around you. You're a talented guy, and can find good work anywhere. Do some job searching in my neck of the woods - San Diego county. We're growing at a fast rate here, jobs are around, the price of housing is not so bad if you look up in N. San Diego county, or anywhere a little inland. Climate is fantastic, and you have the beaches minutes away, the mountains a short hour or two drive, and you'd be in the citrus/avocado belt. What could be better than that??

Patty S.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 11:49AM
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Brian, I have sooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo many scales on my trees at work, you can't tell the difference between the branches or them..lol All the leaves are a shiny sap look and yet the tree is very vigorous..
I took it home yesterday in the hopes it would finally see warmer days outside and so I could kill them all..This ought to be real fun..lol

Patty....I'm keeping my fingers crossed...It would take selling my buisness and quitting both my jobs, selling my home, and leaving everything behind, but worth it..
I don't see us ever getting the summers like we use too and I am a summer, heat, humid kind of guy.
I like to walk around with t-shirts and short when not working and still yet it's impossible around here..
In fact, my favorite weather are the warm dog days of summer that come for but a brief moment now.
That's right, I LOVE humdity, which I think your area lacks? Humm.
Thanks for your kinds words as always...
I have a job ahead of me to postion my plants to be safe despite what I think will be rather unusual cold nights..

Keep your fingers crossed for me and hope for a nice longer summer with many sunny days...I'll keep mine crossed for you:-))

Boy, even without the humidity, you make living there sound like a DREAM...YOu lucky person you..It shows in your attitude and your wonderful looking plants!

Good news...The sun just broke out after days in the 30's and 40's and it is about to touch 60. I think I finally see blue sky spots.Yippy I'm off for the next three days..Let's see how long this stretch will last? So far two days in a row has been the rule..
I'll see if I can take some pics and possibly start a new thread..


    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 3:08PM
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Gosh Mike it sounds like this might be a job for the orkin man . I have a few trees like that myself. I think we have finally turned the page on winter temperature right now is 68 and rising and no frost on the long range forecast :) . Half of my plants have been outside since the weekend and temperatures at night were in the 30s and they still were looking great this morning. Good luck cleaning your grapefruit and don't forget your rubber gloves. Here's to a hot and humid spring and summer you just can't beat it.


    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 3:54PM
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Brian..Just for laughs.....I wil snap a couple of shots of the tree full of scale and then maybe we could give them all names before their last breath..

Really, I have never seen this many before..

It is just a PERFECT example of what happens when ones stops caring for them, ignores them, or developes an I don't care attitude..
I think it's time to start caring again and pray for the best...


    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 7:16PM
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Mike lol how about snap , crackle , pop and of course all the juniors and seniors of snap , crackle , pop . Mike it was 68 degrees when I got home within a half an hour 52 degrees GrÃÂrr. I will take a picture of some of my scale problems when I get the rest of my trees out. Holy cow it was a bad year for scale really gross. Looking forward to seeing your before and after shots . Right Mike you just have to laugh.


    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 7:45PM
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Sheesh..At this rate, they just might drown or freeze to death and just fall off if I leave them outside to long..lol

It's again raining and very cold..Try 45 and thunder....Maybe the environment will just be to hostile for all them buggers..This could be a good thing..ha..


    Bookmark   May 1, 2014 at 10:40PM
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Mike, as the saying goes ...... "Don't let the bas@@@@s grind you down". I potter about on these boards, more often lurking than posting and I have seen you giving advice and helping other folks so often. I hope your weather turns good for you very, very soon and your plants start to see the benefit. Take care
Kind regards
Averil (uk)

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 3:22PM
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Averil...Thank you. Such kind words and I have never met you. Nice to meet you:-)

As promised...

Here is a pic of my tree loaded with Scale..Many say not to nurture your trees, but I disagree..Disgusting, right?
This is what happens when you let a tree go and almost give up on them...

If anyone chooses to ignore their trees most times, this is what happens...I already sprayed and they are all dead..But, here is what they looked like and just an example of what they looked like..Yuk is what I say.

This post was edited by meyermike_1micha on Sun, May 4, 14 at 20:53

    Bookmark   May 4, 2014 at 8:51PM
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Didn't read the entire thread but so sorry to hear you struggling, friend. The excessive heat is a struggle here, too and surprise cold snaps make me have to run outside for hours to protect container trees I thought would be fine. It gets tiring, too. I lost several trees and stunted others when the watering system goes down in 100+ weather and I wasn't healthy enough to catch it until a week later.

Hope you can find a new balance or at least have great weather come your direction earlier next season.

    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 7:28PM
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Loveplants2 8b Virginia Beach, Virginia

Hi Mike!!!

I am so impressed with all of the compliments that you have received about how you inspired many here on this forum. The first time I met you people were talking about your citrus and all of the other beautiful tropicals you grow.. People In The south couldn't grow trees like you could up in Boston. It's just a bad winter and many of us have had issues with our trees.

It has been a frustrating winter and most of us would admit that it has taken a toll on us and rethinking about the varieties and how many trees we have. I have cut back on My collection of trees so I can focus more on the ones I like the best verses on how many I have. Quality verses quantity does have its meaning and I think some of the advice given is spot on.

You have family roots that keep you from doing what you want and or need to do. Their will be a time when it's right to make the change. Sometimes we can't predict when it will happen. But it will....

Keep your head up, my dear friend. You have such an amazing ability to grow trees/ plants, but when you have a combination of things that add to our cold long winter it just adds to our frustration. it will get better, I know it will.

I remember you talking of taking a vacation and you were talking of how difficult it would be because of the amount of trees you have and watering issues. Think about that!!! Trim down your collection, have time to live.. Also enjoy your love of growing. This is supposed to be fun. You need time to relax.

Life is to short. Love your trees, love yourself.

I know you will choose the right path..



    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 9:06PM
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Oh Mike I've heard of army ants before and if there was such a thing called army scales you have them poor you. On the third picture if you look close it almost looks like they have faces and looks like they are smiling I bet they are not smiling any longer . I am sure that grapefruit will look fantastic during the summer. I think spring is almost here Mike after 1 cold night on Wednesday night the temperatures look up up and away. Good job Mike.


    Bookmark   May 5, 2014 at 9:32PM
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madferret(UK 8b-9a)

I name the one at the bottom Sheldon. :)


    Bookmark   May 6, 2014 at 3:06AM
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Steve, Z (6Bground,5B roof) Cincy,OH

Mike I am with Laura on trimming down your collection or get use to the Idea of heating your house with lights over your citrus trees. I would also pot up and eventually end up in the 55 gallon half barrel. I use those and with a friend I moved it from my roof to ground level. my roof is 34 feet above the front porch. It is not as hard as you think. Remember, i am the one with the super heavy soil mix clocking in at 200 Pounds.

You will get a lot more fruit from your favorite trees


    Bookmark   May 6, 2014 at 8:29AM
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Hello Steve....

I'ts not the amount of trees that I have a problewm with, but the frustration of of not being able to provide warm sunny weather outsied when I am suppose too...It would be great if we could go back to the summers we use to have, but I don't think that is going to happen..So that is discourageing.....
I think once I get solar panels, I might be talking cheaper electrical bills...But then, you should only have to use lights for a few months, not most of the year..lol

Laura, my dear Laura..You are just too sweet..Thank you for your suggestions...Between you and Patty, you know her right? And other fine friends here, I ahve realized that I am not the only one with challenges, by any means..How selfsish of me...We all have our demons when it comes to growing citrus...I don't think anyone has the PERFECT environment although I wish I has as much sun as others do.....

You know. the more trees I have the happier I am...I think many forget that it the 'blossoms' that I am in love with and the fragrance....Even if I was to cut back a lot, I would still have no one that knows how to care for my plants, unless I had none..lol..That is unless you can help which I would be thrilled!

Please realize that the growing part is FUN, but it's the weather that's not..It gets worst and worst each year making it harder to enjoy growing anything...

You are soooo sweet with your words and believe me it is so appreciated..I am happy we have been friends for so many years!
Now, if you had to thin your plants out, all those plumies, where would you begin? lol You see..Not possible.

BUt if the winds, unusual cold and rains forced your plumies to fight everyday to thrive, there is where it gets discouraging...

But things are looking up..It's going to get much warmer soon and it has definitely change my mood and desire to keep at it...

Thank you so much for your kindness and love! Much hugs to you! xoxoxoxo

Brian..lllolol..Too funny..I think they are all dead now..Love it..They are actualy falling off before I could even name just one..lol
Good luck with yours pal and thanks for your upbeat attitude..

Nick..Really? You are just too funny..ha

Cebury..You lost many too? That sucks..Even in a climate I would be lucky to live in..Ouch..So sorry//
Thanks for your support man!

I'll update just as soon as the days warm above the 70's..I think it starts Saturday..Then I will see renewed growth and lot's of buds...Can't wait!


    Bookmark   May 6, 2014 at 2:16PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Oh my gosh, Mike. I didn't know you also owned your own business. So, moving would be rather an ordeal for you. But, it is awfully nice here. If you're close to the coast (from about where I am to the coast - that 6 mile span), it's humid enough. My relative humidity today is 55% at 1:30 pm. It can be lower during Santa Ana wind conditions, higher during our Monsoon season. Higher in general, the closer you are to the ocean. So, not too bad, actually. In what I would consider the "comfortable" range. Glad to hear your weather is warming up, though, finally. It's been one very long and cold winter for many in the USA, especially those on the eastern seaboard and in the midwest.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   May 6, 2014 at 4:45PM
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jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

You can't give up Mike.. those are your babies. :-) I can certainly feel your frustration. I hope things have warmed up some for you! I know it's been a crazy winter everywhere! Moving is hard no matter what, but I think someplace warmer would be good for you and mom in the long run. If you were to head someplace warmer, Tucson is toasty. ;-) Hugs! and love to mom!

    Bookmark   May 6, 2014 at 9:49PM
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Patty..I was thinking..I think you mentioned that the humidity is kreeping up these past few years right?
I wonder if your weather getting freaky has an impact on mine?
It's as if the jet stream is steering my kind of weather your way, my summers to be precise, and England, Maine, or Greenlands weather my way since the jet stream now drops on me instead of retreating to Canada..
I would move there, your state, in a heart beat to be near nice folks like you if I could...You never know, between your weather and that of Jojo's, it may happen some day..
Yeah, my own cleaning buisness, massage one, and I work just about full time, besides work out 4 days a week from 8 p.m until 10:00 p.m..lol
The weather is FINALLY tranquil here..69 and hardly a breeze here..It feels good for a change and I am sure my succulents and citrus are having a field day while I'm working..So much better for the my spirit and the trees...-)

I just put my trees that spent all winter at work outside..They got HUGE. Almost too big to put in my car..I use a shade cloth to cover them until they adjust to the sun for a couple of weeks....

Jojo...What the heck? I thought you were long gone from here...What an honor for you to post..It's been for ever.
Thank you for that...They are my babies...Thinning the herd would kill me unless one croaked..And even that would upset me..lol
You see how it starts?
You think you are going to kill one here and there before the years out and buy extra just in case..Then you end up doing better than you thought and end up with babies and adults..lol
I know I guy on the Cactus forums that is there now and he says it's kind of cold for him there.lol..What the?
I miss your pics and the trees you use to post. I hope everything is well with you, the hubby and kids! The frogs too.


This post was edited by meyermike_1micha on Wed, May 7, 14 at 16:06

    Bookmark   May 7, 2014 at 4:02PM
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jojosplants(9/ Tucson, Az.)

Hi Mike! Just needed to stop in and look around. no.. I haven't been here in forever, no plants... Low 70's today, and cloudy it's been beautiful. Not sure what the guy from cactus is talking about. lol... Waiting on the frogs to start showing up.
A move is an ordeal no matter what.. but you have to do what your heart tells you. Business's can start over in a new place ;-)

    Bookmark   May 7, 2014 at 6:31PM
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Well, I'm guessing that when the fragrance of citrus blossoms once again floods your olfactory system you will recover your senses and remember why you go to all the trouble.

It's why I do.

I've gardened in the tropics and gardened in temperate zones and I far prefer the four seasons.
I do have a modest light setup for my tropicals which costs me approximately $40 per winter month- a 600w switchable hps/mh and several compact fluorescent fixtures. It's not much but it keeps the tropicals going during the sad winter months.

Get outside and get some sun yourself- you'll feel better.
I hope.
You're a core person here- we can't lose you!

    Bookmark   May 8, 2014 at 6:18AM
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Dave in NoVA • 7a • Northern VA

I am late to this thread and probably missed any talk about greenhouses. But it sounds like you could use a summer greenhouse for your citrus. The greenhouse should heat up even on cloudy days. Get those babies in there in April. Keep it well ventilated over summer.

Your plants should go to town!

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 1:20PM
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"Mike, unless you are gardening in a jailhouse garden, you are free to move to warmer climates. If growing stuff is important to you (it is important to me) remember you only live once and sometime in order to be happy, you have to make changes in your life. "

I grew up in Boston, MA, and spent a couple years in Chicago,IL, and decided that winter was just too depressing that far north.

I'm in VA now, SE of Richmond, in borderline 7B/8A. Long summers, short winters that never get too cold. Couldn't be happier about it.

So I agree with this advice. If you're not happy where you are, move.

    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 2:31PM
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Steve, Z (6Bground,5B roof) Cincy,OH

All my citrus trees are now putting out growth. Some more than other. As foe my kumquat trees. Well they are growing except my meiwa. I can count the number of leaves on my hands and feet. I would show pics but
a) The growth is small and
2) Photobucket has accused me of being 2 popular. I assured them that most people are tired of looking at my puny trees from seed. I'll post picture on my citrus book thread.

We are now getting temps in the upper 80's with nights in the 50's to 70's. Best of luck to you up on the north sea slope.


    Bookmark   May 14, 2014 at 10:16PM
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Jojo..Hello! Have the frogs showed up yet? I have a few all winter in my greenhouse that I threw in there when they were about a thumb nail size...They love thet fact I feed them crickets once a month..lol
they are not afraid of me and serande at night.

Steve...It's about time the weather is warm, right? Looking at the weather map today thought, it looks like the cold nights are back again...

Joppa..Thank you..It it was just me taking care of myself, I would of moved eons ago..I really can't handle the winters, not even the dry cold windy days even though above 60 degrees..
But my parents come first and they refuse to leave this area...I feel bad for them...Maybe things will change in a good way..
It would be nice if our summers got back to what they use to be..Time will tell.

Dave, I never thought of that..My greenhouse stands almost empty all summer..Now there is a thought...Thanks


    Bookmark   May 18, 2014 at 1:08PM
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Hi Mike I just wanted to talk about the weather I see you guys were talking about the weird jet stream tonight . I just took a peek at your weather for the next few weeks , not looking to good Mike . It looks like you guys are going to be getting that cold maritime east wind for the next few weeks Yuk. We had it today but is supposed to leave tomorrow back to the 70's for the rest of the week . Man that cold east wind goes right through you . I really feel your pain. You might have to put sweaters on your citrus tonight . We have had lots of thunderstorms this week and thank goodness they missed my area because they all contained large hail . Thanks mother nature but I would rather water myself . I hope things get better for you fast Mike.


    Bookmark   May 28, 2014 at 9:32PM
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