Underplanting Meyer Lemon in container?

treya(NSW Aust)June 11, 2011

Hi All,

I have recently bought a Meyer Lemon (dwarf grafted onto flying dragon rootstock). I have bought a pot that is much larger than needed in the hopes of under planting with herbs, edible flowers or small edible greens. The pot is very deep and self watering so the soil at the top would not be wet. I was considering planting some lemon balm or lemon scented thyme underneath it, ideally I would like more than one type of plant, maybe some marigolds, a chili? Does anyone recommend any culinary herbs/companion plants that would grow well in combination with a lemon tree? The lemon is only currently about 2 feet tall. Anything to absolutely avoid? (location = Sydney, Australia)

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Lemon balm eventualy gets tall and woody, although you could keep it clipped.

My personal (visual) preference would be two or three thymes, with at least one being silver thyme. I just think that would make a nice, frothy base for the tree, and if you are able to keep all outside they might perennialize.

Don't put pineapple sage in there--it would take over the whole pot, as would most mints. Oregano might work, though, if you like that.

If you like onion, you could also put in some chives, which eventually have edible flowers.

How wide is the pot?

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 1:55AM
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treya(NSW Aust)

The pot is about 19" wide and 16" tall. (50cm W, 40cm H)

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 4:39AM
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fatamorgana2121(Zone 5/6)

Chives don't do well with heat - I don't know what your climate is like. Chives don't like the most southern reaches of the United States. If you are that warm or warmer, I would not try them.

I wouldn't personally do woody plants. They have deeper and woody roots. Would make for a tangled mess come transplant time.

I wouldn't personally underplant the lemon. But if you decide that is the way to go, I'd probably stick with something herbaceous, something with more shallow roots. Something temporary. Something that would trail over the pot rather than grow upwards. Maybe petunias, tradescantias, and so on.


    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 3:20PM
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Flowers, edible, trailing.

    Bookmark   June 11, 2011 at 10:08PM
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flora_uk(SW UK 8/9)

I absolutely wouldn't put anything else in the pot. It's not that big and the lemon needs all the nutrition it can get. I have a Meyer in a similar pot and it really can't be doing with any competition. That pot is definitely not any bigger than the lemon needs. Even without competition it will need regular refreshing with new compost at the top and also feeding with a Citrus food.

    Bookmark   June 12, 2011 at 5:05PM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

I agree with Flora and Fatamorgana. It won't be in the best interest of the lemon if you co-plant. ESPECIALLY with a plant that might attract unwanted mites and aphids!

    Bookmark   June 13, 2011 at 11:07PM
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andrewofthelemon(7b Central Arkansas)

I have lemon balm under one of my meyer lemons

    Bookmark   June 15, 2011 at 4:19AM
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Don't put anything else in the pot, which is too small for a lemon tree anyway. Citrus do not like competition around their roots.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 8:03PM
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