How to Grow a Lemon Tree Indoors
A lemon tree is a tropical sub-tropical plant that grows in humid regions and belongs to the rue family (Rutaceae), there are some 30 species of these evergreen trees that are grown worldwide. Some countries however not only grow lemons commercially but in mass production, some of these countries are Isreal, Greece, Turkey, Belize, Lebanon, Chile, Italy, Cyprus, Morocco, California, and other Mediterranean regions.
Lemons have a unique taste like no other that will give some of your food and drink recipes that wow. The zesty taste of lemons will excite your taste buds. As for me, I love using this fruit in salads, baked meats, and other meat recipes even adding a few drops to herbal teas is quite nice.
Lemons trees are popular for growing in outdoor gardens or containers, however, we will be giving this a bit of a twist as we discuss how to grow these trees indoors. This method of growing lemon trees indoors is not new but is enjoyed by many, so for more on how this is done let’s take a closer look as we continue reading.
Locating that right area indoors
Lemon trees thrive best in tropical to sub-tropical climates, when seeking to grow indoors this plant needs an abundance of bright light. Because without sufficient light your lemon tree will fail to produce flowers which will discourage fruits from being produced.
When growing a lemon tree indoors they must have anywhere from 8-10 hours of sunlight, a south-facing window is an ideal spot, or installing grow lights will help in providing the right amount of lighting. These lights can be purchased from your nursery or garden center.
The right container Size
Choosing the right size container for your lemon tree is important to grow a healthy tree, indoor lemon trees can grow anywhere from 3-4 feet tall, some can even get taller. The right pot size will not only ensure that your lemon tree is thriving but will also help to support its size. The right size container will ensure that the plant’s roots have sufficient space to spread which will further encourage a healthy tree.
A container that is 16-20 gallons is ideal or a bit smaller will work just as well ensure however that the container has drain holes for water drainage once the plant gets watered and a saucer to catch that water.
Choosing the right soil type
Citrus potting mix is ideal for your indoor lemon tree, if your desire is to use your own soil mixture then a regular potting mix with equal part sand will work as well.
How much water should I give my lemon tree?
1-2 inches deep is adequate when water your lemon tree, as you water it should run out of the drain holes and into the saucer, Let the soil dry out between watering because overwatering can lead to root rot and other issues. During the warmer months, you may need to water more but less during the colder months. Before applying water check the soil’s moisture level with your finger by checking the first few inches of soil or you can purchase a soil probe or a moisture meter from your garden center or nursery to get a more accurate reading
Which fertilizer is the right fit for my lemon tree?
Help your lemon tree by giving it what it needs, fertilizers such as 10-5-5, 12-4-6, or 12-6-6 are the right fit. Before applying fertilizers read and follow the manufacture’s direction for the best results.
Pollinating indoor lemon trees
Lemon trees depend on insects for pollination when grown outdoors, but when growing indoors once the tree starts to bloom gently give it a shake to spread pollen. What you can also do to help your lemon tree with pollination is to get a cotton swab and coat it with pollen from the anthers which is the male.
The anther will be covered in pollen and protruding from the bloom, in the middle of the flower bloom you will see the female part that is sticky which is called the stigma. Cover or coat the stigma as much as possible with the pollen.
Best lemon trees to grow indoors
- Dwarf improved Meyer
- Dwarf Variegated Pink Lemonade
- Dwarf Ponderosa
- Dwarf Key Lime Trees
What is the right temperature for my lemon tree?
And indoor lemon tree loves temperatures that are between 50 and 80 degrees Fahrenheit therefore, avoid drafty windows, forced air vents, radiators, doors that open outside, and extreme direct heat such as a fireplace.
What insect garden pests should I be on the lookout for?
You should be on the lookout for aphids, scales, Ants, mealybugs, and whiteflies, these insects except for ants are sucking insects that suck or distracts the plant’s fluids causing yellowing of the leaves and leaf drop. The use of insecticidal soap or horticultural oils will bring control, before using insecticides read and follow the manufacturer’s directions for the best results.
When should I start harvesting my lemons?
You have put in the work and have waited, now it’s time to reap your harvest. But how do you know when it’s time to start harvesting your lemons. Once your lemons reach a size of 2 to 3 inches and they are yellow-green to yellow in appearance it is time to pick and enjoy them.
The final word on growing lemon tree indoors
Growing a lemon tree indoors is possible by following the steps that are laid out in this guide, These tips will cause you to reap a good harvest of lemons right at your fingertips. Nothing gives a good feeling than to be able to reap and enjoy the fruits of your labor, so bring the tropics indoors by growing and caring for your very own lemon tree you will be so happy that you did as you save a few bucks by growing your very own lemon tree.