Gardening in Hatillo

I am very interested in growing a lemon tree. We currently have a sour orange tree and avocado trees.

I am here for 3-5 months from November to April. I have someone to care for the plants while I am gone.

I am not a gardener at all, but love lemon in my daily tea, and would prefer homegrown over expensive imported ones.

I saw that there may be a problem growing them on the Island.

aca358 :

I saw that there may be a problem growing them on the Island.

I presume this is a reference to the Citrus Greening (CG) virus.  This affects commercial citrus farms as the virus is spread by the grafting process.  If the budwood is infected, then when it is grafted onto rootstock the tree that develops will be infected.

If you were not referencing the CG virus, then I have no idea what the problem could be.  Puerto Rico has the perfect climate for citrus.

If all you want is a single tree, I'd recommend that you order a dwarf Meyer lemon and keep it in a pot as a patio tree.  They do very well like this, and with reasonable care will produce plenty of lemons.

My lemon tree died. But my potted orange tree has a baseball size orange on it! 😁

My growing patio on the south side used to get so hot, most plants got cooked.  Since putting up shade cloth, most plants grow very well.

I have 6 lemons planted. Fingers crossed that they survive.

Thank you for your reply WarnerW.
I did not know what the lemon tree problem was/is, but your answer seems logical.

I currently have 6 seedlings in pots. Fingers crossed they make it. 
Haven't figured out how to post photos here.


aca358 :

I currently have 6 seedlings in pots.

Seedlings?  Are you trying to grow citrus from seed?  If so, you will be disappointed with the results.  Yes, you can get the seeds to sprout, and yes, they will grow into citrus trees.  However, they will not be true to the parent plant, and so you never know what you will get in terms of fruit size, flavor and juice.

The only way to get reliable fruits is to graft a cutting, known as budwood, onto rootstock.  As the budwood joins to the rootstock it will develop into the scion, or top, fruit-bearing portion of the tree.  This will be genetically identical to the parent plant from which the budwood cutting was taken.

I seem to remember reading that the Meyer lemon is about 100 years old, and all Meyer lemon trees are genetically identical to their original ancestor.

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