Wednesday, April 23, 2014
PLACERVILLE, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Grow For It!: Success with citrus

By
From page B3 | December 02, 2013 | Leave Comment

Do you love the smells and colors of citrus? Citrus can be grown in El Dorado County’s lower elevations or in microclimates that are devoid of cold air basins. We touched on various aspects of growing citrus in El Dorado County in a previous article and will now expand that information.

There are many varieties of citrus to match tastes and needs. Some trees suitable for El Dorado County are: the Washington navel orange or a Bearss lime that ripen through winter, an Owari Satsuma mandarin ripening October through January, or a Meyer lemon that ripens year round. These varieties are all cold tolerant to the mid 20-degree range and if grown on dwarf rootstock for our area, the tree is more disease resistant. Plus, a smaller tree is easier to care for, harvest and protect from freezes.

How much water a citrus requires depends on soil type, the time of the year and the age of the tree.

Planting the tree’s root ball one inch above the soil line for good drainage and on a mound or in a pot helps to protect the tree from Phytophthora root rot or fungal disease. Water demand for a tree of any age is the highest during spring flush. Water to a depth of two feet and never allow the root system to dry out. Even watering assists in blossom set and will prevent the skin from splitting in navel oranges. A 10-foot diameter, mature orange tree requires from two gallons in January to 15 gallons of water per day in July.

Citrus that is cold tolerant to 25 degrees will not have any difficulties if that temperature lasts for an hour or two.

However, if the low temperature is predicted to last for more than 6 hours: apply water one day before and the day of the anticipated freeze, string holiday lights (C9s) around the tree, tent the tree and wrap the trunk with a thermal blanket or similar material.

Espaliering (pruning the tree to horizontal branches, usually along a wall or support wires) assists with the above, and can provide a decorative focal point in your garden. Remember that citrus trees bear fruit on new growth.

A young non-bearing citrus tree requires ¼ to ½ pound of actual nitrogen/year. A mature tree requires 1 pound of actual nitrogen/year. Applications should be made in early spring at fruit set and once more in June. Follow all fertilizer label directions carefully. Signs of iron deficiency include yellow leaves with green veins. Lastly, citrus grown in pots may need additional micronutrients due to nutrients being leached.

A new disease that affects citrus is called Huanglongbing (HLB). It was discovered last year as far north as the central valley. It is also known as Citrus Greening and is spread by the Asian citrus psyllid.

The disease makes bitter, misshapen fruit and the tree will eventually die. There is no cure. To avoid bringing this devastating disease to El Dorado County, buy trees from a local, reputable nursery. Do not take cuttings from trees. Additional information on growing citrus trees may be found at homeorchard.ucdavis.edu/Fruits_&_Nuts/Citrus or ucanr.org/sites/placernevadasmallfarms/files/63813.pdf

Master Gardeners are available to answer home gardening questions Tuesday through Friday, 9 a.m.-noon by calling 530-621-5512. Walk-ins are welcome at the office, 311 Fair Lane in Placerville.

For more information about the public education classes and activities go to the Master Gardener Website at ucanr.edu/sites/EDC_Master_Gardeners/. Sign up to receive the online notices and e-newsletter at ucanr.edu/mgenews/. You can also find Master Gardeners on Facebook.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | No comments

.

News

Herard over the back fence: Try fishing at Wakamatsu

By Bob Billingsley | From Page: B1

 
Downtown group coordinates painting, awnings

By Wendy Schultz | From Page: A1

No quick fix for California’s highways

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1

 
More mountain lion sightings reported

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: A1, 1 Comment

Supervisor Nutting trial begins

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1, 8 Comments | Gallery

 
Sanford murder case to jury

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A1 | Gallery

 
Gearing tax questions to correct office saves time

By Treasurer-Tax Collector | From Page: A3

.

Opinion

My turn: More than a buzzword

By Special to the Democrat | From Page: A4, 3 Comments

 
Building restored

By Mountain Democrat | From Page: A4

 
Outstanding dog

By Mountain Democrat | From Page: A4

.

Letters

Altshuler framing

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 1 Comment

 
National Day of Prayer

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5

‘Parents, be afraid’ letter

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 3 Comments

 
Ukranian situation

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 2 Comments

Misquote

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A5, 3 Comments

 
.

Sports

Outside with Charlie: Transitioning

By Charlie Ferris | From Page: A6

 
Pitching the ‘Root’ cause of Trojans’ victory

By Mike Bush | From Page: A6 | Gallery

Pedal power at the forefront next month

By Jerry Heinzer | From Page: A6 | Gallery

 
Sports Scene: April 22, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A7

Roundup: April 22, 2014

By Democrat Staff | From Page: A7

 
.

Prospecting

4-H’ers star at showcase

By Dawn Hodson | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
At a glance: Look for fireballs

By Mimi Escabar | From Page: B2, 1 Comment

Authors to share their stories

By Pat Lakey | From Page: B2, 1 Comment

 
Church to host human trafficking conference

By Pollock Pines | From Page: B3

Grow For It! Flower of Easter

By Barbara Schuchart | From Page: B5

 
.

Essentials

Crime Log: April 1-3

By Cole Mayer | From Page: A2

 
Weather stats 4-22-14

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2

Building permits 4/7-11/2014

By Michael Raffety | From Page: A2

 
.

Obituaries

Bobby Lloyd Bridges

By Contributor | From Page: A2

 
Harry Frank Harper

By Contributor | From Page: A2

Marion “Wayne” Griswold

By Contributor | From Page: A2

 
.

Real Estate

.

Comics

Sudoku

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Rubes

By Contributor | From Page: A8

New York Times Crossword

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Flying McCoys

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Speed Bump

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Tundra

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Horoscope, Thursday, April 24, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
Horoscope, Wednesday, April 23, 2014

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Working It Out

By Contributor | From Page: A8

 
TV Listings

By Contributor | From Page: A8

Shoe

By Contributor | From Page: A8