Transplant shock or have I messed up?
I've been reading quite a bit on the citrus forum lately due to a recent acquisition of a few citrus trees. I've never tried to grow them before and unfortunately, do not live in a zone where they can overwinter outside. I'm sure that will bring on a learning curve in itself.
I recently purchased two Improved Meyer Lemons, a Lisbon Lemon, an Armstrong Sumatra and a Thornless Key Lime. They will be container plants due to our winters here (central OK, zone 7a). I plan to use Al's Gritty Mix with the Turface, Gran-i-Grit and Pine Bark Fines. I've been screening for what seems like forever in order to have enough for the five planters.
I've noticed that several forum members indicate spring is the best time to repot. After much internal debate and not knowing what type of soil they were growing in and if they would make it til spring in this medium, I elected to go ahead a repot while our temps were moderate (highs in the 70's-80's; lows in the 50's-60's).
Now my concern.... In late afternoon shade, I repotted two of the five trees (sumatra & lime) by removing the nursery dirt, barerooting them and immediately placing them into their new container home. The roots were not exposed for more than 15-20 minutes while removing the old soil. Once potted, I immediately watered them with slightly cool water with a tbsp. of vinegar (our tap water is around 7.0 ph) and about 1/2 tsp. of Foliage Pro mixed in (since I had no idea when they were last fed) and watered until a steady stream was running out the bottom holes. They were in shade for the remainder of the day. By the next morning, I noticed all the leaves were curling fairly tight but figured that was just transplant shock. They received morning light only and I pulled them inside my garage for the rest of the day. By the second day, the curling was even more severe with the normally 2"-3" wide leaves now curled to about the size of a pencil. The leaves (although still green) are rigid and feel dry but have not started falling off yet. I checked the moisture level with a wooden skewer and they still had adequate moisture around the roots.
So is this transplant shock or did I miss a step somewhere along the way...? I still have three trees left in their original containers that I'm now tempted to leave alone until spring. Do trees go through less transplant shock in spring vs. fall? I've always thought fall was the ideal time to plant/repot.
Thank you in advance for any guidance provided as this is all very new to me and I'd like to get my plants off to a good start. Or if need be, immediately run back to Lowe's and trade them out and not touch the planters until spring. lol