Friday, September 9, 2011

Citrus (and Fig) Update

This recent week of drizzly, cool weather has caused me, naturally, to begin thinking about the tropical plants that are going to require a winter home. My collection of citrus has tripled since last year, when the simple little greenhouse inside with grow lights was all I needed to keep everyone happy. This year I have a similar plan in the works, although the trees are all much too large to use the greenhouse again this winter. 

The one concern I have had at the top of my list, however, was re potting the citrus trees into pots similar in size to the plastic nursery pots in which they are currently, and happily, growing. I wanted something very close in size, as citrus trees like to be a little root bound, and I didn't want to "stress" them by re potting them in too large a pot. Plus I always worry about plastic pots, since terracotta is much better for root health.

The simple answer is this terracotta azalea pot. It is, I swear, the EXACT same size. The little tree was just lifted out and placed securely into the new pot. I didn't even need to add any soil!
I think this little Nagami kumquat looks quite a bit better out of the nursery pot. Now I just need 7 more...
All of the original citrus plants have, as usual, benefited greatly by going to "summer camp". However, they all need topped off with new soil (from tipping over in the wind, as well as squirrels burying their winter stockpiles). You can see I over-potted the two trees on the ends...they have some catching up to do before they will start to bloom.
The Meyer lemon on the left was nothing more than a looong bare branch with a few leaves on the end. I'll have to watch him closely this winter, as I don't want him to suffer the same fate before next summer. And you can see all of the bright green new leaves on the Key lime tree.
One of the new Meyer lemons have set several large fruit...I hope they can hang onto them with little disturbance in the move.
This Fukushu kumquat (a last minute $5 purchase) looks great!
Some of the fruit is almost ready to eat!
One of the Nagami kumquats had a surprise flush of blooms and has set a lot of fruit...
They are almost lining all of the branches!
We've already tasted a few limequats. They have a great, tart, limey flavor, and would be great candied and placed atop a cupcake, or as a cocktail garnish.
One of the two Chicago Hardy fig trees. This one i potted up, while the other will be planted in the garden, mulched heavily, and used as an experiment to see exactly how hardy this fig is. The 'Petite Negra' I ordered from Logee's last year has spent his summer happily growing in the Penthouse.
Again, I hope he can hold his fruit after the move inside!

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