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A tail of very different lemon seeds

Posted by mgrandin none (My Page) on
Sat, Jun 14, 14 at 23:44

It was probably about two years ago that we put a number of seeds from some store bought lemons into some pots outside. We must have thrown at least 60 seeds from perhaps 20 lemons into the soil, but I do believe they were all the same type of lemon at any rate.

So many of the seeds grew, but we ended up planting the top 6 contenders that were moved from pot to ground. 3 were planted first with really very little preparation (1 bag of soil (perhaps about 5lbs worth) was put into a small dug hole). 1 of the 3 died, and two still survive.

So, the two left obviously have something very different going on even though they are planted within a few meters of one another. I have not applied any fertilizer to them, just watering, coffee grounds, and an occasional sprinkling of worm castings. One tree I guess is now around 142 inches (approaching 12 feet) tall while the other is about 27 inches tall (rough measurements). Neither have produced any flowers or fruit, but I find it interesting what different paths two seeds that are treated in a similar way can go. I am surprised at how quickly the taller one has risen. I am not sure if the slow rising one will ever amount to anything that can produce. I will keep it for now at any rate as maybe one day it will take off.

Anyway, I just thought I would share the results thus far of two seemingly very different lemon seeds grown here in Bangkok TH.

both together:
 photo IMG_1727_WithNotes_zps9a554bc3.jpg
bigger lemon tree only:
 photo IMG_1730_zps5ae6ca35.jpg
smaller lemon tree only:
 photo IMG_1729_zpsffde7b6d.jpg


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

Looks like all my citrus trees compaired to my worthless kumquat tree. It happens.

Steve


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

Yeah thanks Steve. I wonder if there is a chance that the smaller one will take off or potentially it is just from a genetically defective seed and there is no amount of care that will help. Have you ever found a plant you thought was pretty much hopeless make a turnaround that really surprised you?


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

I would be inclined to leave it. It still looks nice and you may have a genetic dwarf for the future that will produce at a very small bonzai level.

Steve


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RE: A tale of very different lemon seeds

Yes Steve I'll leave it just the fact that it averages just over a foot of growth a year (compared to 6 ft./yr for the larger one) isn't great but hopefully it will survive and hit a growth spurt soon.


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

Being from the northeast I have no experience with in ground citrus. Is 6' per year normal growth? That seems impressive for any tree, but then again trees up here take half of the year off.

The tree does looks pretty healthy though so it's funny how small it is in comparison. Depending on how it grows and if it ever flowers it could be useful to have a dwarf tree.


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

They are both lovely trees, especially that large one it will grow into a handsome fellow.

Do you know what the soil is like around where you planted these seedlings?
And I assume you receive lots of rainfall?


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

Dtune: I can't speak to normal growth for citrus; I think lemon trees aren't common around here but there are a lot of mango, papaya, tamarind, coconut, and banana trees.

norwoodn: Thanks; We have a rainy season for I guess around 5 months of the year and the rain can come quick and heavy during that time. Also we have a lot of sun. As for the soil, I guess it is clay but I really don't know how to tell anything more specific than that. The large one is closer to a more sandy area of the yard so maybe it does have a more suitable soil in that area not really sure.


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

Dtune, 6' per year is not normal for a citrus. I have a mandarin cross seedling that's about 4 years old and is about 4 ft tall, I think that's about average growth. I'm amazed!


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

3 of my sweetlee tangerine trees grew very fast from seed to over 10 FT of linear twig growth, but have slowed to 1 to 2 feet in this second year.

Here is a link that might be useful: https://plus.google.com/photos/111099372377958308731/albums/5961857381151877457/5970294622503194642?banner=pwa&sort=4&pid=5970294622503194642&oid=111099372377958308731


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

Steve: Is linear twig growth a measure of all the branches and trunk length or is it another term for height? If the former, that would be time consuming and difficult to measure once a tree gets a bit big.

eahamel: Maybe mandarin or what you crossed it with are just naturally smaller citrus trees? Not sure but I think the type of citrus and whether it is in a pot or the ground can be a big factor in average growth / year. Or perhaps I just have a Shaq O'Neil of lemon trees.


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

linear twig growth is the combined growth of all twigs, branches, and trunk. The picture linked above is 53 weeks old from when the plant broke soil surface. They seem to grow very fast at start. Interestingly all my trees put on the majority of there growth while indoors under grow lamps. My poncirus trifoliatas only grow in spring through fall and do not grow under lights, so I let them go dormant in the unheated basement in front of a low light window.

Steve


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RE: A tail of very different lemon seeds

Hi Steve,

Thank you for the explanation. Your photo link shows up as pure black for me.

This post was edited by mgrandin on Sat, Jun 28, 14 at 3:39


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