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Problem with Dwarf Grapefruit tree

Posted by sit_sat 10B (My Page) on
Tue, Jun 3, 08 at 19:12

I have a 3.5 year old dwarf ruby red grapefruit tree. Last year (picked in Feb-March '08) was a great crop - tons of red, sweet fruits - more than 50 in all. Year before was zilch. I trimmed suckers below the hybrid line, sprayed with a mostly nitrogen solution, and the tree took off. after the last fruit was picked in march, the tree began to flower (mid-April), and then new tiny green fruits appeared at end of flowering stems. things looked good, until two weeks ago, all the green centers fell out and the tree is looking yellow, lost of varigation on the leaves and some flat white color on the underside of the leaves. end of flower stems (where tiny grapefruits were) got all dried up and brown. the tree is on my main lawn watering system so I thought maybe it's getting too much water - gets full sun from the west for about 5-6 hours per day. I cut some limbs near the hybrid line again, resprayed today with nitrogen solution, and will discontinue water for a week or so. the crazy thing is less than a foot away is a dwarf cara cara navel tree that is doing great. that is a younger tree (2 years) and has yet to fruit or flower. also, I have a lot of nasteriums beneath the grapefruit tree for bug control.

can anyone give me a clue what may be going on and what course of action to take. the tree looks weedy and yellow overall. but no evidence of infestation that i can tell...

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Problem with Dwarf Grapefruit tree long do you keep the sprinkler running? Does water aim at your other citrus tree/s? And do you spray other citrus with nitrogen? Toni

RE: Problem with Dwarf Grapefruit tree

Toni - I brought a few leaves into my neighborhood garden center and they told me I am overwatering the tree. I was running 3 times a week and the cara cara navel right next door was getting the same amount of water and starting to show similar signs - brown spotting and very yellow leaves. he said to water once a week and feed every 10 days with citrus food (fertilizer). I have followed these directions (at the expense of my front lawn!) and we have had a heat wave here in southern california with a week of 100 degree plus temps. The bottom line is the tree hasn't changed at all, still very yellow/varigated yellow with brown spotting. don't know what else to do...

RE: Problem with Dwarf Grapefruit tree

I grow nasturtiums and find the soil beneath them really stays damp when everything else dries out. A year or two ago I was killing a Meyer Lemon and finally decided to remove the humungous old flowered parsley plant in front of it. The ground under the parsley plant was really wet even though I barely sprinkle there, and it was keeping the roots of the lemon wet. Is there anything preventing evaporation of that equal watering you provide both plants on the one that's croaking?

RE: Problem with Dwarf Grapefruit tree

You might have hit upon it! The soil under the nasturtiums is very damp and they mostly cover the grapefruit tree. The dwarf cara cara navel right next door is showing some signs, but nothing like the grapefruit tree and that tree has an azalea bush in front of it and not many nasturtiums at all. would you recommend pulling out the nasturtiums in front of the grapefruit tree and replanting some else at its base that would better absorb water????

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