Ever wondered why some people’s fruit trees look fantastic and consistently produce high quality fruit? Well, the answer is a good maintenance regime throughout the year, even in the summer when the trees are not productive. Here are a couple of useful tips to help you produce bumper citrus crops from your trees.

Summer is an important season for citrus trees as it is the main time to fertilise and since they are heavy feeders it is essential to supply their needs now in order to get good fruit later.

You will need to apply granular fertiliser at about the rate of 150g for every year of the tree’s age. For example if your lemon tree is five years old, you will need to apply 750g of fertiliser, although if your tree is growing in a lawn it will need a little more food and water.
It is essential to use a blend that contains all the important ingredients that citrus need for health and vigour. The fertiliser we recommend is Searles® Fruit, Citrus and Berry Plant Food, a well-balanced product that counters deficiencies and contains all the nutrients and trace elements which are vital for strong growth.

When applying fertiliser, it is important to remember that the plant’s feeding roots are located directly below the outermost circle of leaves, known as the drip line. Always apply the fertiliser to the soil, sprinkling it evenly over the surface and gently ruffling it in without damaging the tree’s roots. If digging is impossible, for instance where citrus trees are growing in lawns, just sprinkle the fertiliser on the surface of the lawn. In either case, it is extremely important to water the fertiliser in well, to avoid burning the roots and leaves.
Once you have given the root zone a thorough soaking, trap the moisture into the soil by applying a thick layer of mulch, such as Searles® Premium Garden Mulch (except for trees growing in lawns). Citrus trees require a lot of water and if allowed to dry out during our long, hot summers, may respond by dropping flowers and fruit. When the roots are kept moist but not wet your tree will respond by producing lots of sweet, juicy fruit.

Happy Gardening with Searles from the Searle family.

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