Orange trees love warm weather. Under proper care, they can grow to a size of fifty feet, and yield delicious, juicy fruit. Here are some tips on how to maintain your own orange trees.
Choose a tree that will grow well in your area: There are numerous varieties of orange trees that will do better or worse, depending on the climate they are grown in. Select a variety that will thrive in your home environment.
Orange trees need high sunlight: Rule number one is to plant in an area where the tree will receive maximum light, unhindered by shade.
Do not plant in soil that retains water: Orange trees will not do well with an overabundance of water. Plant in well-aerated non-alkaline soil.
Mulching will help growth: Mulching is a good idea as it provides good nutrients for the trees and helps water move through the soil. Place mulch around the base of the tree.
Orange trees should not be pruned: While pruning can be a good thing in cultivating other types of fruit trees, pruning orange trees will only impede their natural development.
Consider the nitrogen content of your fertilizer: Should you choose to fertilize your trees, be aware of the amount of nitrogen. A tree generally needs 1.5 pounds, and should only be fertilized 4-5 times over the course of its growth period.
In sudden temperature drops, protect the trees: Orange trees will die if the temperature drops too low. Thus if a sudden drop occurs, cover the base of the tree in plastic. Under sustained temperature drops, if possible, consider moving the tree indoors.
Judge harvest time by the size and taste of the fruit: Oranges are not ready to be harvested until they are sufficiently mature and all trace of green coloring is gone. Taste them to be sure of proper sweetness.