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Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Posted by trees4ok Oklahoma (My Page) on
Wed, Sep 14, 11 at 22:51

I bought an improved meyer lemon tree about 2 weeks ago. I brought it home, potted it in soil I already had (knowing I would repot quickly)and put it in full sun. I noticed some of the leaves were yellow/green and a few were falling off, I thought due to leaf minors.

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I came home from work today to a 1/3 the trees leaves on the ground and about 1/4 of the leaves left have curled. I rushed to my local nursery bought MG mix (I know mistake!) a fish emulsion fertilizer and BONIDE pesticide. Besides repotting, what else can I do? Could it be just shock? Could it be something else? Thanks in advance :)


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Doesn't look like leaf miner from these leaves, trees. I would suspect transplant shock, but hard to know unless we can see the whole tree. What did the roots look like when you repotted it?

Patty S.


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

I will post additional pictures tonight. Since I am going to be repotting again, what is the best media for a meyer? I have pecan hulls,cotton seed, peat moss, pine bark and pine straw readily available to me.


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Bought it, repotted it, and put it in full Oklahoma sun....I'd drop most of my leaves, too ;-)

Put it in some bright shade, and begin to lightly fertilize. Fish Emulsion wouldn't be my first choice,
but if that's all you have then that's all you have. A complete fertilizer would be best.

For the potting mix - try 5 parts pine Bark, 1 part peat moss, and 1 part perlite.
You'll need a source of Calcium and Magnesium, too. The easiest way to do this is to add
1 Tablespoon of Dolomitic Garden Lime per Gallon of soil mix you make.


Josh


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

hey trees

glad to see you got over here. Josh makes a good point. 2 weeks ago we were still having 100+ degree days. All though the suns angle has dropped quite a bit it can still burn. Give it some TLC and it should recovery nicely. One other thing. If you dont want to water up to 2 times per day in the heat of our summers avoid the gritty mix. I love it but I also dont mind watering a lot.

I buy the green county soils pine bark mulch from lowes or home depot. I then screen it through a 1/4 inch screen. What ever falls through gets mixed in a ratio of 5 to 1 with perlite. So far it works great. Not sure if you are in the OKC or Tulsa area or where ever else but I think all the lowes and home depots in OK carry green country soils products including walmarts. I just recommend theirs because the particle size seems to be very consistent bag to bag and the size is right.

The people here are very smart and love to help so dont be afraid to ask.

Mike


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Hey Mike, am I confused or what!!!!?

Anything I have planted in teh GRITTY mix has taken for ever to dry out and it never requires me to water everyday, not with my citrus in pots larger than 8inches anyway.
I am finding myself turning to the 5.1.1 mix on many of mine since I find it dries out a bit better than my gritty.
Of course if you are using the gritty in much smaller pot, then that requires a watering much more often.

Strange!

Mike


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Thanks everyone! I work at a wholesale nursery in the OKC area so I bought some pine bark mulch as well as pecan hulls but am still looking for the lime. I went to a retail nursery in town and that's who advised me to get the MG, fish emulsion, and the pesticide. Today we had a snap of cold weather so I moved my meyer in the (heated) garage and it looks to have only dropped 5 leaves!! Way better than yesterday :) When I repot (hopefully tomorrow if I can find the lime) I post pictures of the tree and roots so hopefully you experts can tell me what's going on!! Thanks again everyone for the advice- I'm completely new to the citrus world :)


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

hey mike

During the peak hot months here and the sun and wind are brutal that mix does dry out pretty darn fast. Some days the wind is so hot it literally feels like a hair dryer.

mike


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

As promised here are some pictures of the tree and supplies of repotting. I did a mixture of 5 parts pine bark mulch, 1 part pecan hull, 1 part perlite, and 1 tbsp lime. I washed all of the old soil (all I could get out) off and didn't see any signs of rot but did see new thicker white roots. Is this a good sign?

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My tree's new happy home (I hope!)
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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

My tree was happy for about a week, with no leaves dropping. Yesterday I noticed a few leaves starting to curl and dry up and today I found them on the ground. Why does this keep I happening? I have been watering about 1 every two days. (when the mulch mix is completely dry)


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

transplant shock, lower nighttime temps, shorter days, all these could be potential reasons. just keep doing what you are and wait. What are you plans for this winter protection?


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Thanks for the response :)

I plan on bringing it inside (as it often snows here)and placing it near west facing window. Is this ok, or is there a better place?


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

"When the mix was completely dry", How dry?

Also have you used a skewer stick or some other device to push the mix completely 100% between all the rots making sure they are covered?

Did the leaves fall green or some other color?

Did you make sure to keep it out of full sun for a couple of weeks until the plant adjusted?

Mike


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

When I water- I completely soak the tree, so I try to only water maybe every three days. There isn't any leaf wilting but the soil as deep as my index finger is dried out.

All the roots are defiantly covered but I didn't push the mix between all the roots- I basically poured the mix in the bottom of the pot, stuck the tree in and continued to fill the pot. I did make sure to push the mix in the corners of the pot. The actual tree roots have 2" of mix on top of them.

Most of the leaves fall green- some with a yellowish tint as seen in the about pictures.

It lives on my south facing covered porch where it gets indirect sun all day and maybe 30 minutes of direct sun as the sun sets.

Does this all sound normal?


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

The problem with the leaves could be slugs... when you repotted the tree you did not have the problem for a week... then it started again... so it is not a nutrient problem; and the leaves don't look like lack of water... I suspect some kind of pest; and the markings on the leaves look like slugs/snails... might want to put some Deadline around the pot; if it isn't slugs, no harm done.


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

The leaves don't look like slug damage, looks like leaf miners and if so it is a non issue.

Two weeks ago I picked 2 5 gallon pails of lemons from my Myer and then ripped it out of the ground with my front end loader. Moved it to a new location and put it in the ground, pure unamended sand and it didn't lose any leaves....


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Leaf miner (CLM) has a very distincive trail/mark not seen in the fotos... BTW thank God we don't have Citrus Leaf Miner in Guatemala. As for transplants, the older the citrus the harder to transplant; but ground to ground in the same day gives you a chance. "Ripping Out" a mature tree and replanting with unamended soil is a shock that the tree will not likely survive.. 2 weeks is hardly time to judge... post a picture of the tree here in 6 months...if it is still alive.


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Citrus are shrubs not trees they transplant easily. I have seen groves of 10 year old trees moved mostly bare root with 90% success rate.

Ask any of the commercial citrus growers and they will tell you that the citrus do best in sand that has not been amended.

The pictures from the original poster show leaf miner trails that are months old. If you enlarge the pictures you will see it is very clear.

Didn't you claim you are starting a commercial Meyer lemon growing enterprise? If so I sure hope your hired hands are more knowledgeable on the subject of citrus than you appear to be.


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

I don't know any commercial Meyer Lemon growers; and I can't imagine a commercial citrus grower putting trees on dwarf rootstock... which creates a bush and not a tree.
I have no intention of getting into a competency discussion here... the advice is free and sometimes you get exactly what you pay for. When someone in the world produces their first million Meyer Lemons, we can discuss who is knowledgeable and who is not.


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

why all the hostility and personal attacks? We are all here to help and offer the best advise to the best of our ability and knowledge. Its quite obvious that most of us are just "hobby" growers. I dont see the leaf minor damage or slug damage but then again Im not an expert. I will say this that in the 3 years I have had citrus and tropicals I have never had leaf minors on any of them here in Oklahoma where the OP lives. I dont think they are as common as areas that are more inclined to grow citrus. I could be wrong but thats my experience.

I am however an expert in dealing with our intense Oklahoma sun which on a hot August day can literally fry an egg on a sidewalk, Ive seen it done. In fact some of my trees suffered damage exactly like what the OP's leaves did when we had 3 weeks straight of 105F+ and low humidity. Some of you may not know or care but Oklahoma set the all time average high of 89.1F for the month of July and august wasnt to far behind.

Oh and John I produced three meyers this year so Im getting close,LOL.

Mike


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Johnmerr,

You have a young commercial planting and I wish you luck with it BUT...if I were to plant 100 acres of strawberries would that automatically make me a strawberry expert?


Nobody said a thing about dwarf rootstock:) Full size citrus are bushes. They share much more in common with bushes than true trees. People tend to call citrus trees but that is more a function of familiarity of term. People like the tree form so nurseries and home citrus owners tend to prune to a tree shape but that does not make citrus a tree anymore than shaving a cat makes it into a snake:) .....I would have thought a self professed citrus expert such as yourself would have known that.


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Some folks consider a "tree" a single-trunk specimen attaining a height of 6 meters or more.
There have been some fantastic debates as to what constitutes a tree on the Conifer Forum.


Josh


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

MKsmith,

While you don't have leaf miners in OK (lucky you) that tree he just bought likely came from an area that does have them. John posted that the picture did not show leaf miner damage yet tells us he has no leaf miners in Guatemala. Well here in Florida we sure have them and I stare at the leaves they damage every day year in and year out.

He went on to tell me I have killed my tree by transplanting it when he has no knowledge on the subject. Here in Florida Citrus trees are uprooted and moved all the time when they are young. The trees come out of our sand easily with very minimal root damage.

Ask any citrus expert and they will tell you amending the soil for citrus is a mistake........but heck what do the guys that have raised citrus all their lives and have 1000's of acres know.

When a person puts themselves out there as knowledgeable on a subject then posts blatantly false information it rubs me the wrong way.


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RE: Improved Meyer Lemon Advice Needed

Amending soil isn't recommended for any plant/tree in general.


Josh


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