Friday, July 1, 2011

Mini Citrus Orchard Planting

Oranges, lemons, limes and mandarins - how's that for a little suburban orchard?  Have bought a four citrus over the last week and planted most of them in the backyard - in a sunny, sloping position which was otherwise covered in weeds.  You might recall I planted native grasses all through the weeds to establish and outcompete the weeds, now I am adding an understory of citrus.

This is the Meyer Lemon, full of buds, I think I should remove most of these for the first season so it concentrates on getting good root growth instead of impressing us with fruit then falling over.

The Joppa Orange Citrus x aurantium Joppa is, (according to the label), a Californian juicy variety that has a fine flesh and a rich flavour.  Fruiting mid season, it grows well in coastal areas into a beautiful small tree 3m - 6m.  This is the discount plant a season old, looks like it has been moulting, should be right for spring.
The citrus will be productive because there is so much sun from the northerly aspect, but also because they will be growing in what has been a green waste dump for the past few decades.  So the soil is a deep dark organic humus crawling with life and especially legless lizards!

Can you see the three citrus?  Maybe not yet, but they are there, this is the space I want thick with citrus in the next few years so we can make jams and swap recipes etc like in the olden days.

It is a real shame to cut them up with a shovel, so I am making just one slice of the shovel, then working the soil with my hands to open it up.  The citrus just plop into the hole and then I cover the space with some of the bamboo mulch that I have everywhere.

The citrus I have planted includes a tahitian lime, a mandarin, a joppa orange and a meyer lemon.  I have my eye on some exhausted grafted citrus at a local nursery from last years stock, they are less than half price at $15, but bedraggled and a bit ugly with not many leaves.  But at least they are hardened to local conditions, and not green from being in a greenhouse.
Update: Have been back and bought another mandarin and another orange, this one a washington navel.

1 comment:

  1. This past winter I put in a lemon, tahitian lime, mandarin, lemonade and an orange. And that's just the citrus! Fun, isn't it?


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...