If you want to grow a small citrus plant, you need to know that it is not difficult to care for a lime at home. You just need to learn some rules. In the open field, Russians will not be able to get the fruits of this tree, since a temperature of 1-2 degrees is destructive for shoots and leaves. The plant is grown in large pots at home. The height of the tree is no more than 2 m, leaves with a characteristic lemon scent.
Attention! Fragrant buds and ovaries on lime at home are formed all year round.
Features of growing lime at home
The climatic conditions of Russia are not very suitable for growing citrus trees and shrubs (lime is no exception) in the open field. Most often, planting is planned in specially equipped greenhouses or at home. The fact is that on an evergreen plant, flowering and bud formation occurs throughout the year. Flowers appear in the spring, and the fruits begin to ripen at home for the New Year.
Many indoor flower lovers grow lime as a pot culture. Of course, not all limes can be grown at home. Experienced gardeners recommend these varieties.
For reproduction and cultivation of citrus fruits, seeds or cuttings are used at home.
How to grow lime from seed
For propagation, you can use varietal seeds or take seeds from lime fruits bought at the store. Only in the latter case, you should not dream of a varietal seedling.
Preparing the seeds
For reproduction at home, seeds must be selected from ripe fruits. The seed should be treated carefully: the seeds should not be damaged or stained.
Rinse the selected seeds with water at room temperature to remove the remaining pulp. Put in humic fertilizer for 30 minutes, then put the seeds on a dry napkin and dry.
Soil and planting preparation
Fill the seedling container (volume - not less than 2 liters) with special soil intended for growing citrus fruits. Experienced gardeners advise adding 20% of coarse river sand, previously washed from silt, to the soil.
If it was not possible to purchase special soil, you can make up the soil mixture yourself. A little sand is added to the garden soil so that the soil is loose, water and breathable.
The presence of a drainage layer is important for growing limes at home from seed. Small pieces of brick and expanded clay are used as drainage. A layer is poured into 2 cm, and on top is a nutritious soil mixture.
Important! Lime flower pots should have drainage holes.
Planting the bone
To prevent the embryo from stalling, the bone is buried 1 cm. The top of the pot is covered with glass or film to create a greenhouse effect. This procedure will accelerate the germination of the planting material.
The pot is placed on a light window in a room where the temperature is at least 25 degrees. As a rule, when growing a lime from a stone at home, sprouts appear in 2-2.5 weeks, if the desired temperature is maintained. At low rates, germination extends up to 2 months.
Advice! To prevent the sprout from dying, you need to open the film for oxygen access. Water from a spray bottle when the topsoil dries out.
Sometimes, when planting, for fear of lack of seed germination, 2-3 pieces are planted in one container. Transplanting is not recommended, as well as pulling out seedlings, otherwise you can damage the root system. It is necessary to carefully cut off weak seedlings with scissors, leaving the strongest one.
As soon as sprouts appear, the shelter is removed and the pots are placed on a bright window, where there are no drafts. If a stable temperature is established on the balcony or loggia within 19-20 degrees, pots with lime grown from the bone are taken out there. Water the seedlings little by little every day. Home-grown lime does not tolerate dry air, so the seedling should be sprayed with warm water from a sprayer.
Sometimes, after a few months, several sprouts may appear from one seed. There is nothing wrong with that, this is how all citrus fruits are arranged. After 2-3 true leaves grow on the seedling, the strongest shoot is chosen, the rest are removed.
During the year, the lime tree is grown at home, in one container. Then you will have to transplant the seedling into a larger pot (from 5 to 10 liters). The transplant is carried out by the transshipment method so as not to damage the roots. The root collar must not be buried.
Important! The soil for growing lime at home is the same as for planting seeds. A drainage layer is required!
How to grow lime from a cutting at home
Lime can be propagated not only by seeds, but also by cuttings. This planting material can be cut from your plants or borrowed from friends.
Selection of containers and soil
For planting at home, choose a deep pot so that there is enough room for the growth of the root system. The bottom of the seat is filled with expanded clay by 2-3 cm to ensure drainage.
The rest of the pot is filled with soil. As with seed propagation of limes, it is best to buy a citrus potting soil from a citrus plant store. It must be mixed with washed river sand (about 20% by volume) to ensure looseness, moisture and air permeability.
Young branches of the mother plant are used for cutting cuttings. Only in this case the preparation will give a good root system. You need to work with gloves, lime tree and prickly at home. Last year's branches are cut into pieces 8-14 cm long. Each of them should have at least 4-5 buds. The lower cut is made at an angle of 45 degrees, the upper cut at an angle of 90 degrees. You need to leave 3 leaves on the handle.
Important! Cut the lime stalks with a sharp knife so as not to break the bark.
The lower cut of the cutting should be treated with any means to stimulate root formation. You can take:
To prevent the cutting from drying out, cover the top cut with garden varnish.
Planting cuttings and care
It is good to moisten the soil in the pot and place the cutting with a sharp cut in the center at a slight angle. Planting depth - no more than 1.5-2 cm.
For better germination at home, a pot of lime is covered with a foil to accelerate root formation. You can use a cut plastic bottle for this purpose.
Set the container to good lighting in the room at a temperature of 25 degrees. But direct sunlight should not fall on the cutting, so that the plant does not get burned. Every day, 2 times lime cuttings are sprayed with warm water, and watered as needed.
Good roots usually appear after 30 days. After that, you need to transfer to a new pot. You need to work carefully so as not to damage the root system.
Advice! While the stalk is rooting, it is kept under a film, aired daily. Before transshipment, it is necessary to adapt the seedlings, increasing the time the lime dwells without shelter.
How to care for lime
Growing indoor lime at home and caring for it is not so easy, since the plant is finicky. In order not to lose the lime tree, it is necessary to observe the peculiarities of agricultural technology, to create optimal conditions for the pot culture. Moreover, they directly depend on the season.
Optimal growing conditions
In its natural environment, this citrus plant is found in tropical climates. Consider this when setting up your homemade lime. These parameters include:
- choosing a place for planting lime;
- temperature regime;
- watering and air humidity to the apartment.
Lighting and location selection
Lime is a tropical plant, so it has a special relationship with lighting at any time of the year. The room where the citrus tree will stand should be light. Unfortunately, the windows are not always well positioned.
Where to place the lime tree:
- Lime loves light, it is best to choose a west or east window for placing a plant at home.
- If the windows face south, then the pot is placed in the depths, away from the scorching rays of the sun.
- If the room is northern, then the plant will not have enough light, so you will have to install additional lighting in the form of phytolamps.
Another nuance to which novice gardeners should pay attention. Lime at home gets used to a certain place, he doesn't like it at all if the pot is moved. Very often lime after a change of place starts to hurt.
Maintaining the temperature in the room where the lime pot stands will depend on the period of plant development and the time of year:
- The active vegetation of the plant lasts from March to October. At this time, a temperature of 20-35 degrees is recommended for home-grown lime.
- From October to March, the lime begins a period of comparative dormancy, so the plant needs a coolness of 15 to 18 degrees.
Such a temperature regime will contribute to the timely laying of flower buds, so fruiting will be good.
A tropical plant does not develop well if the indoor air is dry. That is why, in the warm season, the plant is bathed 2-3 times a month. In a city apartment, you can use a shower, in a village - spraying from a spray bottle.
Warning! In order not to overflow the soil, the surface of the pot is covered with foil.
In winter, home-grown limes need less spraying. Enough once a month.
You don't need to have a shower to humidify the air. A pot of lime can be placed in a wide tray on a small substrate, filled with expanded clay or sphagnum. Water is poured directly into the tray, evaporating, it humidifies the air.
Despite its tropical origin, limes do not tolerate too moist soil, which resembles a swamp. Sprinkle the home-grown lime or cuttings as needed. It's easy to understand that the lime is thirsty: the topsoil becomes dry.
The plant especially needs timely moisture during the active growing season, namely from spring to autumn. In winter, watering is reduced (no more than 3 times a month), but does not stop altogether.
Advice! For watering and spraying lime, use soft, settled water at room temperature. Rain or melt water works very well on the plant.
Any indoor plants need timely feeding, including lime. During development, the root system draws out all nutrients from the soil. If you do not feed the lime tree at a certain time, the plant will begin to ache and be damaged faster by pests. Of course, there is no need to dream of any kind of harvesting.
Spring and autumn are the time of active vegetation and feeding of home trees with organic matter or mineral fertilizers:
- Plants need nitrogen, phosphorus and potassium. These fertilizers are applied in equal proportions. Many growers use special formulations designed for citrus plants for feeding.
- If organic is used, then mullein solution is best suited.
- In order for the plant to develop normally, top dressing is carried out regularly every 14-15 days during the period of active growth, flowering, setting and filling of fruits.
- In winter, during the period of relative dormancy, feeding is carried out after 30-45 days, so that the lime has time to form new flower buds.
Lime, grown at home, needs timely pruning, at different periods of development. Moreover, it is necessary to start work already on a young tree, thereby stimulating the growth of lateral shoots on the branches.
When the lime is one year old, trim each twig one third of its length. Formative and sanitary pruning will be required in the following years. These events are held every year.
All types of pruning are necessary so that the crown is not thickened. This will save homemade lime from many problems, including diseases and pests.
Lime with a beautifully formed crown bears better fruit and will delight its owners not only with fragrant huge buds, but also with bright green fruits throughout the year.
The picture below shows a diagram of how to trim potted lime at home at different stages of life.
Every indoor plant lover is well aware that it is impossible to grow a tree in one pot for a long time. Moreover, lime at home can grow up to 80 years old.
Transplanting young plants up to 5-6 years old should be carried out every year before the active awakening of lime begins. This is the end of winter - the beginning of spring.
Older lime trees at home do not need to be replanted every year. Roots that have sprouted through the drainage holes serve as a signal for work. The plant is placed in a large pot by transferring and replacing the top layer of soil.
As with propagation by seeds or cuttings, nutrient soil is taken for transplantation. It can be a ready-made citrus formula or one that you can make yourself. In this case, the mixture should consist of equal parts of sod, leafy soil, humus and sand.
Attention! When compiling the soil, you need to pay attention to the following qualities:
- moisture and air permeability.
- For transplanting, take a pot, the diameter of which is 2-3 cm wider. Clay or plastic containers will do. Several drainage holes are made in each container so that there is no stagnation of water.
- The bottom is filled with drainage: expanded clay, broken brick, foam or stones. The layer should be at least 2-3 cm.
- Then dry manure is poured with a layer of 1 cm and the prepared soil is poured onto a third of the pot height.
- In an old container, you need to water the plant so that the water soaks all the soil. Remove the lime from the pot, transfer it to a new container and top up the soil.
- It is not recommended to deeply deepen the plant, the root system should be close to the surface, and the root collar should be above the soil surface.
- After transplanting, the lime is watered and harvested for 1-2 days in partial shade so that the plant does not wither.
Important! If the further care of the lime at home after the transplant is organized correctly, then the leaves will not fall off.
Will seed lime bear fruit?
Growing lime at home from seed, gardeners dream of getting tasty and healthy fruits with the scent of lemons. It should be noted that with the creation of optimal growing conditions and the maximum observance of agrotechnical standards, the first flowers, and then the fruits, will appear on lime in 6-10 years.
Homemade lime diseases and treatments
Lime at home, as well as in the open field, can hurt and be affected by pests. Most often these are:
- spider mite;
You can understand that pests have visited the plant by the following signs:
- Deformation occurs, yellowing, and then leaves fall.
- The upper side of the leaf blade is covered with a bloom of gray or black.
- Shoots and leaves become sticky.
- Very small red or red bugs appear on the plant.
- The underside of the leaf is covered with cobwebs or white foam.
- Little or no flowering at all.
In the fight against pests, if there are few of them, you can use a folk remedy: dissolve laundry soap in water and spray the tree.In case of a massive invasion of pests, it is better to use chemical preparations, for example, "Actellik" and "Aktara" or others.
If we talk about diseases, then homoz is considered the most dangerous for indoor limes. For various reasons, cracks appear on the shoots, through which a sticky liquid begins to flow. After some time, the shoot begins to dry out, which leads to the death of the tree.
There are several reasons for the onset of the disease:
- non-observance of the rules for planting a plant;
- excessive watering;
- use for cold water irrigation.
To save the lime, you need to spray those areas where signs of the disease are noticed with a solution of copper sulfate (3%). Then coat with copper-silty or lime paste.
Taking care of lime at home, if you study the rules of agricultural techniques well and strictly follow them, is not so difficult. As a result, it is possible to grow a tree up to 1.5 m high, which will give fragrant and healthy fruits.