Orange Tree Care Maintenance

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Successful tips on the growth and care of an orange tree

Orange Tree

Oranges along with orange juice are some of the most popular fruits/fruit drinks which are consumed at breakfast time. It is great to have a cup of orange juice or better yet oranges that are freshly squeezed. Consuming oranges by eating or drinking in a juice form is a great way to get in those Vitamin Cs.

There are so many benefits of orange intake which of them are, promoting the immune system, help to control the blood sugar level, prevents skin damage, lowers the risk of cancer and the list seems to be endless which is why it is great to have at least one of these trees growing in your home garden.

Just the thought of knowing that you have an orange tree growing in your home garden is so cool, what is even neat is that you get to grow this wonder fruit without the use of harmful chemicals which means fruits that are really healthy which is a win-win.

If this describes you and you are interested in growing and orange tree in your home garden then stick around and see how easily this is done so you can have your own homegrown orange tree which will give you all the Vitamin C that you need not to, mention saving a few $$$$$$$$ on that grocery list.

Planting Location

When installing your orange tree look for an area that gets a lot of sunlight along with giving your tree room to grow. Depending on the variety some orange tree can reach heights of 5-10 ft tall and in width, while others can get up to 12-20 ft with the seem in width so get to know the height and width of the variety you are planning on installing so you can give them the proper spacing.

Soil Type

The soil type for an orange tree should be organic-rich and also well-drained or sandy.

Watering Methods

When watering your orange tree ensure that the soil is moist at all times, especially if the orange tree is newly installed. Form a catch basin around the trunk in a circle to catch, hold, and direct water into the plant’s root zone.

Fertilizing Methods

The use of a citrus fertilizer will go a long way in helping you to reap a good harvest, fertilize during the growing season once every two months and every three months during the fall and winter. Before applying fertilizers read and follow the manufacturer’s label.

Garden pests of an orange tree

These pests may seek to wage havoc on your orange tree but putting these methods in place will eliminate them.

  • Snails
  • Aphids
  • Scales
  • MealyBugs

Snails

Snails can be a real menace to your orange tree by eating holes in the leaves and the fruit. Other signs of snails are the presence of mucus, these pests are active during cloudy days and night times. To bring snails under control remove places they may hide like the lower leaves of branches, along with debris and dead leaves. Hand-picking them and throwing them into a bucket of soapy water will eliminate them, also the use of snail baits placed around the tree in a circle 0r the use of traps will offer some help.

Aphids

Aphids are small paired shape insects that cause damage by sucking the fluids or the sap from the plant’s leaves which cause the leaves to curl and turn yellow. These garden insect pests also cause black mold to form from their secretion which is a sweet substance known as sooty mold that causes the plant to take on a dusty dirty sickly appearance. The use of insecticidal soap will bring these garden insect pests under control.

Scales

Scale insect is very tiny but can cause huge damage to an orange tree. These garden insect pests remain motionless causing much damage, the body of scale insects is round and looks like and armor. Scales also cause damage by sucking the plant’s fluids which causes yellowing of the leaves, leaf drop, and sooty mold the use of insecticidal soap, horticultural oil, or releasing beneficial insects into your garden area will eliminate them.

MealyBugs

Mealybugs are tiny insects that are covered in a white cottony mealy waxy mask. These insects do damage as the aphids and the scales. Treat these garden insect pests as you would with aphids and scales.

Orange tree diseases

The diseases of the orange tree are as followed.

  • Brown Rot
  • Armillaria Root Rot
  • Blast
  • Anthracnose
  • Black Root Rot

Brown Rot

This sign shows up as water-soaked lesions on fruits, with an off scent. The flowers and the twigs are also infected turning brown. Control measures include removing tree branches that are growing to close the ground, ensure that your orange tree is getting the right amount of water. When irrigating minimized the amount of water that is making contact with the leaves also the use of a copper fungicide will offer help.

Armillaria Root Rot

Fungus influence this disease, signs to look out for are mushrooms that may form at the plants base, the leaves yellows, and fall from the tree, the tree beings to wilt and decline, rotting bark at the base of the tree may also be seen and the roots may also be destroyed. The only means of control is to remove the tree and discard it along with its roots. The soil should be fumigated and nothing should be replanted in that spot for at least a year or longer.

Blast

The plant’s petioles have black or water-soaked lesions, that enlargens along the midrib, the fruits may have lesions that are black, twigs and branches may have cankers, the leaves are also affected turning black. The use of a copper fungicide applied during the fall and winter months will offer help.

Anthracnose

This disease is influenced by long wet conditions during late spring, signs appear as streaks which are black, green, or red on fruits that are mature, the leaves are cover in fungal spores which are dark the leaves also prematurely drops from the tree. Applying fungicides to the tree will help to bring this disease under control.

Growing and orange tree from a container

When growing an orange tree from a container choose a container anywhere from ten gallons or larger, the container should have drain holes for water drainage. The soil should be a well-drained garden soil that can hold moisture, adding perlite will also help with drainage.

Before adding the soil to the container add about 1-2 inch layer of pebbles inside to the bottom of the container then add the soil this will also help with drainage. The soil should be kept moist and not waterlogged which will lead to root rot,  use of a citrus fertilizer will go a long way in helping you to reap a good harvest, you should fertilizer your orange tree during the growing season once every two months and every three months during the fall and winter months. Before applying fertilizers read and follow the manufacturer’s label. Keep an eye out for garden pests, diseases, and treat as discussed.

A Rule To Follow

Once the tree gets too large for the container remove it and place it in a larger container or install it directly into the ground. But in a lot of cases, the growth of the root system is kept confined to the container which slows or controls the top growth.

Harvest Time

Glass Of Orange Juice

Now comes the fun part which is harvest time YEAH, you have put in all that work and have waited for months to get to this point as the thought races through your mind of how you put in all that effort from the day you installed your tree up until now.

Your mouth begins to water as you anticipate how delightful these fruits will taste. However, it takes about 4-6 months before you can begin to harvest your oranges. To know if your oranges are ready to harvest look for signs of your oranges turning from green to somewhat reddish, yellow, or orange color.

Tree Pruning

Pruning can be so beneficial because pruning will increase the quality of fruits along with proper air circulation, by opening the tree will cause sunlight to go where it is needed which will give you a healthier plant and better fruits. In climates where the weather is warm pruning should be carried out during the springtime February and March and in colder climates late February to March. Pruning should be started right before the bloom period or hold off on pruning until all of your oranges are harvested.

Prune overgrown stems and branches from the orange tree to keep its natural form, wood which is diseased, rotted or insect-infested, or damage. Remove water sprouts also, ensure that your pruning saw, shears, and loppers are sharp and clean of disease because what you don’t want is to use dull or disease equipment on your orange tree which can cause other issues.

The final word

Growing and orange tree from your home garden is pretty amazing and is so beneficial, this wonder fruit can do so much to promote your health and what is so great is that you will have a whole tree at your fingertips.

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Why spend money on this fruit which can be costly when having a tree can help you in saving. With a tree that is of great benefit health-wise while saving a few dollars is worth the investment so go ahead and grow one of these trees from your garden and reap the fruits of your labor.

About the author

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Norman loves being in the garden, both at home and for his job....
he is 'Natures Little helper' being outdoors, growing his vegetables and flowers from an early age.
Now having spent over 22 years in the profession he want to give some of his knowledge to others...
his vast array of hints and tips you will find scattered over this site will help you no end growing plants in your garden.

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