When will Kumquat fruit after dormancy?

brandon_the_random(7b)July 13, 2014

I've read that kumquats are unique because they can enter dormancy. I assume that's what happened to mine last November. I got it in September, potted it and brought it in. It grew splendidly for a month, even shooting off several branches, until it started to drop some leaves from the bottom. The leaves weren't damaged at all, and were green and healthy when they dropped. The inside temperature was around 60F and even my Miracle Fruit Trees were doing fine. Anyhow, they slowly defoliated until it was bare, then in Spring new leaves emerged.

Now, in July, its still only half of what it was foliage-wise. Its still growing plenty more leaves but I wonder if its able to grow fruit in time if this happens every year. Apparently they're able to survive dormant on the hills of Asia, so I assume it might be possible for them to fruit. Is it just because mine isn't ready to fruit yet? It's about 3 ft high and 1.5cm thick in standard potted topiary shape.

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my kumquat unlike other citrus trees is constantly fruiting. it doen't go into dormancy.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 12:18AM
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What species is your kumquat and what zone do you live in? Do you keep it inside to prevent dormancy? I'm considering leaving it outside year round in a half barrel since I live in zone 7B, Redmond Washington. I think it should survive, but dunno about the fruiting and leaf growth. The strange thing is, my meyer lemons are doing well in the same conditions, but only the Kumquat dropped leaves.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 1:49AM
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hoosierquilt USDA 10A Sunset 23 Vista CA(10b Sunset 23)

Brandon, kumquats do not go "dormant" in the true sense of the term, dormancy (no edible citrus does). They will, in very cold conditions, attempt to shut down as much as possible and try to survive. Certain citrus cultivars are more cold-tolerant that others (satsumas, Gold Nugget mandarin, kumquats, and to some degree, Meyer lemon). Remember, citrus are semi-tropical plants, and they are not able to go fully dormant like deciduous fruit trees do (pome/stone fruits, certain berries, etc.). If your winter was particularly harsh, it may take a while for your kumquat to revive itself. If you have winter after winter of harsh and cold temps, you may see your kumquat never actually be able to recover enough to produce. And, cold tolerance you may see quoted for certain more cold-tolerant citrus are based on being planted in the ground, where roots are protected by the soil. Planting in a container would not afford a citrus tree that same protection. So, if your temps during the winter are consistently below 32 degrees for long periods of time (days), then you may want to consider bringing your tree or trees into a sheltered area during those cold snaps. It may be that the kumquat just got a colder blast than your Meyer lemon, is in a less desirable area to survive cold temps, or, the roots are better established for your Meyer.

Patty S.

    Bookmark   July 14, 2014 at 11:28AM
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thank you hoosierquilt! That was very informative. I recieved it mail order around late october and kept it inside. The poorly established root system may explain the leaf drop. The mass growth in the week after recieving it decieved me in thinking it was thriving, but it was probably using its last stores of energy.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2014 at 12:48AM
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RyanLo(NC 7B)

Its possible the soil is just too wet.

    Bookmark   September 10, 2014 at 10:14AM
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