The Pacific Northwest is famous for the cool, wet temperatures that stay at a pretty even keel all year ‘round. Rarely are there drastic weather changes. When you think of the cool climate, you don’t necessarily envision rows of citrus trees blooming. Citrus is most traditionally grown in places like southern California and Florida where it gets nice and hot, and the winters are very mild. Imagine being able to grow citrus trees in the Pacific Northwest! You can, and our folks at Greenwood Hardware want you to get the most out of your adventure into your own urban orchard.
The trick to getting fresh citrus fruit from your very own tree is to put the tree seedling in a pot. This makes it portable and will allow you to bring in your tree when the temperatures dip below 40. Most citrus trees cannot tolerate freezing temperatures for more than a couple of hours. If you have a greenhouse, you can move the pots in there. They do need lots of sun!
Citrus trees need rich, acidic soil which you can make happen with a fertilizer solution added to the pot once a month.
It is best to start with cold-hardy citrus trees. These will generally be dwarf trees that are hybrids. They have been crossbred to withstand the cooler temperatures and will have shorter growing seasons as well.
Cut back any “suckers” that grow out from the bottom of the tree’s trunk. These little suckers drain the energy and nutrients from the tree and can cause problems with growth and leaf production.
Use a layer of mulch to keep the soil moist between watering. If you start with a small tree, make sure you gradually move up in pot size to allow the tree to grow and the roots to spread. It is a good idea to give the tree new soil once a year but keep about an inch of the old soil.
If you are ready to start growing your citrus trees, head into Greenwood Hardware and pick up the supplies you will need to be successful. Fresh, homegrown lemons and oranges are in your future! Come on in, or contact us today.