Transplanting orange trees

jbclem(z9b Topanga, Ca)November 12, 2005

I have some dwarf citrus trees (Algerian tangerine, Navel, Tarrocco Blood Orange, Satsuma tangerine) that I want to dig up and take to a house I'm moving to. They are all about 4-6 feet tall (the Satsuma smaller than that), and have been in the ground about 3-5 years. I'm going to dig up the root balls and wrap them in burlap. I'm told that with deciduous fruit trees (apples, etc...) you prune them back alot when you transplant them, but I'm not sure what kind of pruning I should do with the citrus, especially since it's late fall now and they seem to be in their growing season...some with small fruit(Algerian) and some putting out new branches and leaves. The Navel Orange and the Tarrocco have about a 3-4 ft spread of branches and they're going to be the hardest. The other two will be must easier as they aren't very wide at this point.

I could use some advice about this, they have to be transplanted as they will be bulldozed if left behind.


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goodground(z6 NJ)

In general, try to disturb the roots as little as possible and I'm sure they'll be alright. From my experience with dwarf Citrus, it seems that the rootzone is not that widespread. Try to take as much soil as possible. I just digged up a Fig yesterday and was very surprised how wide the roots spread out in just the first season planted, but I didn't have a wider container for them right now. I put the entire rootball in a square plastic container I had that's used for a pet bed. I watered it and let it sit out in the sun for this weekend before I will store it in an unheated protected shed under my outdoor steps and let it go dormant. I will re-plant it in the ground in the spring and hope for more juicy figs :)

Just give them some TLC during the digging up/transport/planting and they should recover. When you re-plant them in the ground you can walk over the soil to settle it down before watering it. As far as pruning goes, I have read that you don't need to prune Citrus, but I'm not sure about their roots? Being that I always loose some roots during transplanting, I don't bother to prune them. So far so good for me. Good Luck

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   November 13, 2005 at 10:35AM
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softmentor(z9/sunset13 CA desert)

The main problem with digging them this time of year is that they will need to start some new growth soon. When that new growth starts, it is very tender to frost and can not take the cold weather. If your weather is frosty at all, try to keep them in large containers until frost danger is past.
Prune the tree hard, as it will have very little root to sustain the top. Paint the entire bark with white latex houshold paint right after digging/pruning. That will help prevent sunburn later, until it has a chance to develope a good leaf cover.
Arthur the Date Palm Guy

    Bookmark   November 16, 2005 at 4:41AM
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