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Mid-South Gardening: Free Meyer Lemon Tree

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Forum: Mid-South GardeningReplies: 17, Views: 100
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roseone33
Southern Mountains, GA
(Zone 6b)

September 2, 2006
5:56 PM

Post #2685069

I have a Meyer Lemon tree with a few lemons on it, in a planter. It's about 6'-7' feet tall and needs to be overwintered indoors. It's gotten too heavy and large for me to move in and out as the season pass. It would need to be picked up up in North Grorgia, outside of Blairsville.
Gourdlady2006
Rienzi, MS
(Zone 7a)

September 2, 2006
8:48 PM

Post #2685417

Your Meyer Lemon Tree sounds beautiful Roseone33. I hope you can find someone to give it home. I have two Grapefruit trees that have become too large for me to move inside. I left them outside last year. They died back, but sprouted new trunk and leaves this year. I think I am going to plant my GF in the yard and see what happens.

Linda
SherryLike
SE Arky
United States
(Zone 8a)

September 2, 2006
9:35 PM

Post #2685526

Good luck on your grapefruit tree - I put one of my Meyer's Lemons in the ground for the winter, I have all digits crossed!!
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

September 3, 2006
1:56 AM

Post #2686152

If I may weigh in, y'all have got my attention. I have two grapefruit trees in pots which I have had too long. Before I got smart, I kept moving them up to larger pots and now, I can't manage to move them. Now, in the spring, I lay them on their side and pull them out of the pots, slice back the root ball and prune the top. As a result, they need less water and are somewhat manageable. Another mistake I made is not nipping the wicked thorns from day one. It won't hurt the tree and then the tree won't hurt me!

In the winter, I cannot move them easily so will put them on the front porch up against the house wall and when we have freezes, I cover them with old bedspreads, mattress pads or whatever... I move them, one at a time by laying it in a little red wagon. This past winter was milder and I was lazier so I left them on the patio and when we had a frost, I laid them on their sides and covered them. The only way that wouldn't work is with a freezing rain. So far they have only had minor leaf burn. I know a man locally that put his in the ground. When we have cold nights, he protects it by wrapping the whole tree in a heavy rug. It has worked for him. Another local man planted his Meyer lemon in ground and built a greenhouse around it. It is a delight on a nippy winter day!

I am posting a photo of one of the two that I wrestle with...

Thumbnail by podster
Click the image for an enlarged view.

shadowgirl
Moscow, TN
(Zone 7a)

September 3, 2006
5:25 AM

Post #2686688

Here in lies the problem. We are such great gardeners that before you know it our plants perform beyond our means. Last year I had two bananas that got so big they must have weighed a couple of hundred pounds and we had to leave them leaning against the house for the winter. I tried to protect them with blankets but they did not make it.

A dolly is great for moving heavy pots. Pod, your GF tree looks very happy and healthy. Rose, hope you find a good home for your lemon.
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

September 3, 2006
11:44 AM

Post #2686906

Odd, after I made this post, I picked up Tx. Gardener and read a column about covering plants. It says the main source of heat is the soil. Using a blanket will help trap the heat. If you don't cover all the way to ground it defeats the purpose. Also, in a pot, provide extra protection for the rootball. They recommended weighting the covering to prevent air from entering. Another recommendation is to provide a heat source. Examples were water containers (painted black) to hold solar heated water surrounding the plants, a mechanics trouble light at the base (heat rises). Another suggestion was to mass plants on a protected side of house and cover tarp/blanket/etc with leaves for added protection. I guess the G'fruits are hardy as I haven't covered to the ground. They are over 7 feet tall.

My dilemma is when we have a day where temps struggle to get above freezing, do I uncover or do I leave covered. Do you think gardeners are gamblers????
roseone33
Southern Mountains, GA
(Zone 6b)

September 3, 2006
1:12 PM

Post #2687041

Thanks for all the postings. My first frost date in mid October, but it is not definite.
Gourdlady2006
Rienzi, MS
(Zone 7a)

September 3, 2006
2:00 PM

Post #2687152

Last year I left my banana tree outside all year and did not wrap it, thus it took a long time for the tree to come back. My brother has several planted Banana trees, when the frost gets them he chops of the wilted trunk and heavy mulches what is under ground, they come back every year and are bigger every year.

When I resided in Northern Florida, I use to wrap my orange tree in a blanket and put a clear or white plastic garbage bag over the blanket over night, then take everything off during the day if the temps were going to be above freezing, if not then I would leave the blanket/garbage bag on. Perhaps placing a black plastic bag over the blanket them will help hold in the heat????.

One day in my rush to get everything covered I forgot to put the blanket under the plastic garbage bag. I was almost in tears when after a few days of really cold temps, I took off the coverings and my orange tree had died. Lesson learned.. blanket HAS to go under the plastic or the tree not be able to breath and will die.

Everyone in my family is laughing at me for going from house to house begging for pine needles, lol (there is only one pine tree in my yard). Just wait until next spring when my Banana and GF trees are gowing while theirs are still trying to warm up and see who will be laughing then!! lol

Currently my GF trees are out by the muscadine vines, but will be moved to the south side of the house for the winter.

Linda
SherryLike
SE Arky
United States
(Zone 8a)

September 4, 2006
2:37 AM

Post #2689038

You all are such creative gardeners, I love your tree pod!!! 70 years ago, a local doc married a beautiful young woman from FL. They moved to Arky and lived happily ever after, except she missed the FL palm or palmetto trees. So, the doc bought her one for their front yard. Each winter they made a 'greenhouse', with a light. Over the years, the GH grew to about 20 feet high x 10 or 12 feet square, with lights, and the tree flourished. Some years ago the doc's wife died, and he is in the local nursing home and is 92+. He sold the house about 5 years ago, beautiful place, and the new owners decided not to heat the palmetto during the winter. Guess what?? The tree 'burns' a little some winters, but is bigger and better all the time. Hummm. I still don't know what I'm going to do with my Meyer's (and other large tropicals) this winter, but you all have given me lots of food for thought. Thanks!!!
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

September 4, 2006
2:45 AM

Post #2689116

Nothing uglier than a frostbit palm tree. We have some around here. Takes on a tropical chill!

How big is your lemon tree? What other tropicals are you worrying about protecting?
roseone33
Southern Mountains, GA
(Zone 6b)

September 4, 2006
12:51 PM

Post #2689762

podster, not sure if your asking me or another poster, but my tree is about 7' tall but the leader could use a pruning. I have no ther tropicals. I do have a nice size rosemary plant I bring in, but I saw a waist high one in the library garden, so maybe I could plant mine in a seltered location and take my chances. Seems like I did that a long time ago and lost the plant.
SherryLike
SE Arky
United States
(Zone 8a)

September 4, 2006
1:33 PM

Post #2689865

I have dwarf banana trees, don't know their exact name, but they are supposed to have edible fruit. I also have an orange, forgotten which one, it's small but had three delicious oranges this year and they were beautiful too, there's a photo someplace, a kumquat, a large loquat, but I think they are pretty safe here, two Meyers Lemon, one in the ground about 3 x 3, a smaller one in a pot, then I have Gingers, I don't know if they are tropical, I have 3 Dr. Moy and butterfly jasmine, really beautiful Upees, and several others that flower, but I've forgotten the names. pod, this particular palm is only tipped with burn, they scissor it off and it is none the worse for the wear and tear, it is big and beautiful...
judycooksey
Pocahontas, TN
(Zone 7b)

September 9, 2006
3:43 AM

Post #2704807

I'm bumping this up as I don't see that anyone has taken you up on your offer.

Judy
roseone33
Southern Mountains, GA
(Zone 6b)

September 9, 2006
12:07 PM

Post #2705381

Thanks Judy, I am at fault for not following through. There is a local person coming to get it for their greenhouse, so it is taken.
judycooksey
Pocahontas, TN
(Zone 7b)

September 9, 2006
2:18 PM

Post #2705686

Wonderful!!!

Judy
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

September 10, 2006
1:27 AM

Post #2707521

I am glad your tree found a home, or is it just in storage for you?
roseone33
Southern Mountains, GA
(Zone 6b)

September 10, 2006
12:15 PM

Post #2708555

Well, it's found a permanent home, but it's at a place I can visit, my son's place, about 5 miles away. :-)
podster
Deep East Texas, TX
(Zone 8a)

September 10, 2006
12:40 PM

Post #2708606

ALLLL RIGHT! Glad to hear it. : ))

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