4 Essential Tips for Growing Lemon Trees in Pots
Can Meyer lemon trees grow in pots? They sure can! Check out these essential citrus growing tips for growing Meyer lemon trees in pots and get started today!
Houseplants are a growing hobby in America among the young and old alike. A quick hop on social media will shower you with photos of living rooms full of succulents, palms, and pothos. One fabulous houseplant you might not see very often, though, is a lemon tree.
Can lemon trees grow in pots and live inside your house? Absolutely! Even though we may not think of citrus trees as houseplants, indoor potting keeps them insulated from the weather and lets people in cold climates enjoy delicious home-grown citrus.
Continue below for quick expert tips on growing lemon trees in pots.
1. Get the Basics Right
Because lemons are sour citrus fruits, they don't need warm weather to flourish as much as sweeter citrus varieties do—average room temperature is fine. However, they are picky about their other basic conditions.
Choose a plastic or terra cotta pot that holds 2-25 gallons and fill it with potting soil (not garden soil). Only plant one tree per pot, and make sure that it has adequate drainage. Even if you place your tree in front of a large window, it will still need a grow light to thrive during rainy or snowy months.
2. Growing a Lemon Tree From Seed
How fast do lemon trees grow? If you're determined to start your tree from seed, you'll find out that there's a lot of waiting involved. Most lemon trees don't begin fruiting until they're 3-5 years old, though they can yield up to 40lbs of fruit in their first productive season.
If you've wondered why you can't pick up a packet of citrus tree seeds from the hardware store, it's because they only survive for a short time. To start your tree from seed, you'll need to buy organic lemons from the variety you want to grow and harvest the seeds. Rinse them off and plant them 1/2 inch deep in moist potting soil.
The seedlings should sprout in a couple of weeks, but wait until they have at least four leaves to move them into a larger pot. Keep a few seedlings around until you find out which one is healthiest.
3. How to Grow a Lemon Tree From a Sapling
Growing a Meyer lemon tree from a sapling is much easier than starting one from seed, and it cuts down the amount of time you'll have to wait for fruit. Wait to buy a pot until you get your sapling, and then purchase one that's taller than the tree's roots.
Because the sapling is used to nursery conditions, it may take some experimentation to find the best location and watering schedule. Keep in mind that transplanting is stressful and your tree may need extra water or fertilizer until it adjusts.
4. Don't Forget to Water and Fertilize
If you want your lemon tree to feed you, don't forget to feed the tree! Citrus trees are picky about their watering and fertilizer, so make sure to read through our full list of instructions here.
Remember that your home's temperature and humidity will determine the amount and frequency of water your tree needs. Be careful not to overwater, as you could rot the roots, but don't go for so long between waterings that your tree's leaves start to droop. Fertilize your sapling every 2-3 months as it grows for the best results.
Growing Lemon Trees in Pots Is Easier Than You Think
Now that you've learned the ins and outs of growing lemon trees in pots, it's time to start an indoor citrus grove of your very own! If you're looking for the perfect sapling to start your collection, US Citrus can help! See our citrus trees here. If out of stock, send us your email and we'll let you know when a tree is available.
Don’t want to wait for your citrus fruit to grow? Get a curated box of fresh-harvested citrus fruit from South Texas sent to your door every month!