How long does it take for a lemon to mature from bud to mature?

loveisblind1May 16, 2012

Hi I have about 13 small little lemon buds on my 3 year old dwarf lemon tree. I had it for over 2 weeks now and it really doesn't look like it has gotten any bigger. How long does it take for it to grow from bud to a ripened lemon?

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I have no personal experience but I have ready anywhere from 2-4 months depending on conditions. I would read up on your specific type of lemon (Meyer Lemon?) and see what the experts say.

-Doc Citrus

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 4:22PM
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TimSF(CA Z8B/Sunset17)

You don't mention where you live, but here in CA, lemon season (particularly for Meyers) is during the winter months until about March (so certainly more than 2-4 months!). More mature trees will have a second minor harvest in the fall (and very old trees may bear almost year-round). However, since your tree is still quite young, I'd say count on a winter harvest.

Also, very young trees will lose most/all of their baby fruit. Not to worry/you should expect this, since citrus will automatically self thin, knowing how much fruit they can successfully hold to term (related to how many leaves are present).


    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 5:05PM
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Hello. I live in San diego, ca. And it is a meyer lemon. Wow, I will have to wait for the fall or winter? O_O

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 5:11PM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Tim is steering you in the correct direction. The Meyer, when established, will bloom pretty much all the time, but mainly in the spring. You'll see new blooms pushing out as you should be picking the previous season's ripe fruit. My Improved Meyer is probably 6 - 7 years old, and I am enjoying ripe fruit almost all year 'round. 3 years ago, when we first bought the house and moved in at the very beginning of Sept, the last year's fruit crop was still on the tree. We picked off all the old fruit, but it did cause the tree to try to try to alternate bear the following year, so since then, we've tried to be diligent in picking ripe fruit. Meyer's a very prolific producers once they get established. Takes a citrus about 3 years in the ground to start producing reliably. You'll get some fruit before, but it will be not the tree's best effort. And, as Tim mentioned, a lot of fruit drop is normal for young trees, as the tree works to establish itself, all normal.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 7:25PM
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Generally about 6 months from bloom to maturity for a Meyer; maturity being 8.5 Brix (percent sugar); after that, you can leave it on the tree another 2-3 months during which time it will get a deeper yellow color outside and at the outer limits of that time, it will begin to shrink and the peel will get thinner, so as to last only about 10 days after harvest.

For garden Meyers I would just pick the fruit when you want to eat it and you will have fruits all year; the downside of leaving the ripe fruit on the tree is it somewhat limits the fruit set from the next bloom. Commercially we take off the fruit within 60 days of maturity to get ready for the next crop; but for my garden trees, I opt for the year round availability.

    Bookmark   May 16, 2012 at 7:57PM
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Randy31513(Georgia 8b)

Here in South Georgia the Meyer's lemon blooms starts in late February to early April. The fruit yellow-up as John had noted when the weather turns cooler in October with final picking late December to January.

    Bookmark   May 17, 2012 at 6:38AM
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