The Meyer Lemon Tree is a fun tree that always seems to be blooming or fruiting. Many Meyer Lemon trees are blooming now, bringing beautiful flowers and a wonderful fresh citrus scent to many homes. What’s a better way to prepare for spring cleaning than with an all-natural lemon scent? These low maintenance trees don’t require a lot of work in order to delight gardeners, however there are a few steps that you can take in order to grow full sized mature lemons.

The Secrets

Lemon blooms turn into fruit, so if you don’t have blooms life won’t give you lemons. So, how exactly do you get these blooms? Make your tree comfortable. Under the proper care conditions your tree will have a ton of blossoms!

1. Light

Fresh LemonsBefore fruiting, Meyer Lemon trees need to see the light! They won’t flower without getting enough light. Make sure your trees get at least 6 hours of sunlight a day. You can do this by placing your tree by a large sunny window. If you can, try to place your tree near an area that faces south. Southern facing areas tend to get more light.

Also, if your tree is potted and kept indoors rotate it every three weeks the make sure that a different portion of your tree is facing the window. This way the entire tree gets time in the sunshine!

2. Water

Close up of fresh lemonNext, make sure that your trees get the right amount water. Over watering or under watering your tree can harm fruit production. The soil should slightly dry out in between waterings, but it should never completely dry. Check on your soil once a week, if it feels dry to the touch two inches below the surface of the soil then it’s time for more water. Slowly poor water into the pot and count to 20, or wait until you see water running out of the bottom of the pot. Moisten the soil, don’t over saturate it.

Lemon treeGenerally Meyer Lemon Trees need water every one to two weeks. Leaves can be an indicator as to how your tree feels. If the leaves are drooping like they’re too heavy for the branches, and turning dark brown or black the tree is getting too much water. If the leaves are crispy and dry or curl upwards this is a sign of under watering. Also, if the leaves turn brown or yellow this is another sign of under-watering.

Don’t immediately over correct under watering. Gradually add more water to your tree over time.  If you immediately saturate the soil with a ton of water your tree may become stressed or over watered!

3. Nutrients

bigstock-Lemons--1234361Another way to keep your tree healthy and productive is to make sure that it gets all of its vitamin and minerals. When potting or planting your tree it’s beneficial to mix in some citrus planting mix with your natural soil.

Also, to give your tree an extra boost give it some citrus fertilizer! Give your tree two tablespoons of fertilizer like citrus-tone three to four times a year. Once in the early spring, early summer, late summer and in the fall. Space out your fertilizing by about four to six weeks.

4. Temperature

iStock_000006221242SmallMeyer Lemon trees are very cold hardy and can withstand temperatures down to about 20 degrees. If your area gets colder than that then your tree will need to be brought inside. When they’re inside winter heat can dry them out. Be careful not to place them under a vent. If your leaves start to get dry you can mist them daily with a spray bottle to give your tree some humidity.

Once it warms up don’t just stick your tree out in the hot sun for hours! It will need time to adjust to the heat. Move your tree outside for a few hours each day, gradually increasing the amount of time it spends outdoors to get it used to the harsher outdoor environment before letting it live outside all summer.

5. Pollination

iStock_000037932872_LargeOnce the blooms open on your tree they’ll need to be pollinated. Good thing that these trees are self-pollinating! However, having two or more trees will greatly increase the amount of blooms that will get pollinated.

Meyer Lemon Trees can bloom all year, but have two main blooming times. In the fall and early spring. If they bloom while it’s too cold for them to be outside simply keep your tree indoors. However, they won’t have the wind and bees to carry their pollen from bloom to bloom for them. You could release a few bees inside of your home to help with pollination, but we wouldn’t recommend it!

You can pollinate your indoor trees by hand. Simply take a small dry paint brush and run it over each bloom as if you’re painting them. Do this once daily, and don’t wash the paintbrush until after the blooms have been pollinated.

6. Pruning

iStock_000002845657SmallAnother way to keep your Meyer Lemon tree happy is by pruning it. Meyer Lemon trees don’t have to be tall to produce fruit, just healthy. Keep them wide and branched out. When you decide to prune your trees in the early fall or early spring look for branches that are growing straight upwards. Generally they aren’t fruit producing branches. Also, remove any damaged or crossing branches. Make your cuts at 45 degree angles facing upward to promote new growth.

iStock_000024059448XSmallAlso, look for areas that block the sunlight from the center of the tree. Removing these branches will increase air circulation and the amount of sunlight that hits these branches, which will decrease your tree’s risk growing mold and fungi.

Be sure to look at the amount of lemons you have growing. In order to prevent fruit over bearing you’ll want to remove a few lemons in large clusters of them when they’re pea sized. This will make sure that you have a few lemons that grow to their large mature sizes, instead of a ton of lemons that stay small.

7. Patience is a Virtue

two lemon trees and an old white chair in front of a wallYour Meyer Lemon tree will need time to get adjusted to their new environment before they start producing fruit. Once your lemons start to grow give them time to mature. They can take around 6 months to mature. Don’t harvest them until their skin changes from green to dark yellow. When your sweet Meyer Lemons are ready their skin will be a shade of yellow similar to the color of an egg yolk.

If Life Doesn’t Give you Lemons, Grow Them Yourself

If you follow these seven steps to lemon success then you’ll have fresh lemons before you know it. Don’t miss your chance to grow these awesome lemons yourself! Aside from smelling great, and growing extremely well in a pot, Meyer Lemons are the best for baking. They’re a cross between a sweet orange and lemon, so they’re extra sweet. Your family and friends will be amazed once you present them with a dish like a lemon pound cake, made with Meyer Lemons that you grew yourself!

Previous articleWillow Hybrids: A Quick Care Guide
Next articleCrape Myrtles: How to Prune, not Murder
12 years ago I was sitting around, talking with two of my favorite, fellow Plant Geeks. We were trying to figure out why so many, superior plant varieties were not available to the public and were seldom offered in Garden Centers. Instead, the stores sold less attractive, older varieties, proven to be disease and insect prone. They also sold the sprays and chemicals that their customers would eventually need. The Ah Ha moment hit us and a company was formed. We decided that we would only offer the highest quality plants that must be Easy to Grow.