Growing citrus provides fragrant blooms and edible fruit.
Choose the Right Lemon Tree Variety
Look for dwarf or miniature lemon tree varieties, as they are more suitable for indoor cultivation. Common choices include Meyer lemon, Ponderosa lemon, or Eureka lemon.
Select a Suitable Container
Use a large pot with drainage holes to prevent waterlogging.
Ensure the pot is at least 12-18 inches in diameter to provide ample space for root development.
Use Well-Draining Soil
Use a well-draining potting mix with a slightly acidic to neutral pH.
Adding perlite or sand to the soil can improve drainage.
Provide Adequate Sunlight
Lemon trees require a lot of sunlight. Place your tree near a south or southwest-facing window to ensure it receives at least 8 hours of sunlight per day.
If natural light is insufficient, you can supplement with fluorescent or LED grow lights.
Keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Allow the top inch of soil to dry before watering.
Water thoroughly when you do water, and ensure that excess water can drain from the pot.
Temperature and Humidity
Lemon trees prefer temperatures between 60-70°F (15-24°C) during the day and slightly cooler temperatures at night.
Maintain moderate humidity levels. Indoor environments can be dry, so occasional misting or using a humidity tray can be beneficial.
Feed your lemon tree with a balanced liquid fertilizer during the growing season (spring and summer). Follow the recommended dosage on the fertilizer package.
Prune your lemon tree to maintain its shape, remove dead or damaged branches, and encourage healthy growth. Pruning is typically done in late winter or early spring.
Lemon trees are self-pollinating, but you can aid pollination by gently shaking the tree or using a small brush to transfer pollen between flowers.
Watch for Pests and Diseases
Keep an eye out for pests like aphids, spider mites, or scale insects. Treat infestations promptly.
Ensure good air circulation to prevent fungal diseases.
Lemon trees can take a few years to start producing fruit. Be patient and continue providing care and you'll be seeing blooms (and maybe even little fruits) soon enough.
Tagawa Gardens has this excellent article on growing indoor citrus in Colorado.