Last Fall I decided to purchase a Meyer lemon tree (ok, three) after reading a post on the blog by One Hundred Dollars a Month. I had purchased smaller lemon trees (if you can even call them that) from nurseries, but they never survived. They were these little, 18″ at most, little shrub/trees. Now to be completely honest, I would say that 90% of the time fault was with my lack of care. When it would get too cold for them I would forget to bring them in, and alas, they died.
So fast forward several years…I’m perusing through blogs and I come across one from a woman that lives in western Washington and was buying Meyer lemon trees to grow. The difference? She was purchasing larger trees. Being the freak that must research everything I looked up several companies, read reviews and studied how to care for one of these things. Afterall, I wasn’t about to shell out this money only to have the thing die on me after the first cold patch.
Most of the companies that sold them were fairly similar in price, selection and how they were shipped, so I opted for Fast-Growing-Trees.com . When the boxes came I was a little nervous. They were packaged in these tall slender boxes that I thought for sure would hold mangled half dead tree. To my surprise I was wrong, thankfully. Granted they were a little squished, but the packaging clearly said that they would need to some time to stretch out a bit and return to their normal shape, which they did.
I had then planted within a few days in 20 gallon pots. I’m sure I’ll eventually have to upgrade to a larger size, but for now we are good. The information slip also said they could go into shock and drop their leaves, or have some turn yellow and die, but that didn’t happen. They were happy from day one. They didn’t grow much at first but when the weather warmed up it was glorious. The blossoms smelled absolutely heavenly. On warm sunny days I would open all the doors to the room they were being kept and the hummingbirds would flock to them. When the doors were closed the hummingbirds would come to the doors hover, almost like they were begging to get in.
The blossoms eventually turned into lemons, and then it happened… one of my poor lemon trees started to drop her leaves and look sick. It didn’t take long for her to look like a spindly stick. But I wasn’t going to give up, no way!!! Did more research and realized I had over watered her. So I let her dry out and a few months later she started making new leaves and blooms. Phew!!!
Even though one of the Meyer trees was now on the DL, the other two were thriving. They had these gorgeous green lemons that were free of blemishes, absolutely perfect.
They started turning yellow about two weeks ago so I have my fingers crossed that I will get some Meyer lemons afterall.
My overall thought, unless you live in a citrus growing area you are going to need to baby these things. Be prepared to bring them in, or have some kind of shelter. Be prepared, when the lemons are tiny you will have a zillion of them….but most will drop off leaving you with a dozen or so per tree. I had read about that part and knew it was coming but a part of me was still really bummed every time one would drop off. Then there’s the blossoms… they smell beyond delicious, it’s absolutely addictive. In the mornings when the outdoor room would heat up from the sun I would go out there and just inhale as deeply as I could. Yes, it’s that good.
If I had the room I would purchase more, but at this point I will be keeping it to three. Would I recommend getting one, or two or me? Most definitely.