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Talkback: Growing orange trees

Ha-Ha. Mealy bug is about the only thing from which we (well I mean a lemon, an orange, a kaffir lime & a calamondin) haven't suffered. Red spider & scale by the bucket load,but not mealy bug (yet).
Fingers remain tightly crossed.

But even if they don't fruit (& moving them outside in the spring/summer should certainly help them to do so) the scent from the flowers is enough to make the effort of helping them survive worthwhile.


  • THat is SO sad! I spent years washing scale insects of our bay tree with soapy water. Leaf by leaf - it took forever. Finally sprayed it with some fatty organic stuff and totally got rid of them
  • Can identify with your woe. Have you tried a Calamondin orange? So far mine's it's overwintered in my bathroom happily and no sign of mealy bugs or other nasties. Still, give it time.

    Have otherwise given up on citrus entirely - have 2 skeletal lemon trees outside that make me feel guilty every time I see them.
  • Alex M - not tried a Calamondin orange, thanks for the tip. Found a fresh batch of mealy bugs on my orange this weekend... Am just going to put it outside and hope for the best!

  • We had a few hours in lovely sunshine today digging our allotment.
    We found what looked like a runner bean and it was loaded with tiny white worms which were also outside the "bean".
    We are concerned that this could be harmful to humans....having just manured with 4 year old horse manure.
    Does any one have any idea what these worms are?
  • will the orange tree survive, or is it time for the big orange grove in the sky, you have to report on it's progress during the summer months.
  • kaycurtis - It can't die! It was a very special present. It has lived through such hard times and it is actually looking quite healthy at the moment. I have every confidence I'll be eating home-grown oranges very soon. Honest.

    Kate x
  • I love citrus and there is a German nursery specialising in "hardy" citrus from where I got a Thomasville Citrangequat, a Keraji mandarin, and a Swingle Citrumelo. Apart from the mandarin the above are complex hybrids of more or less non-hardy citrus (eg orange and kumquat) with the hardy trifoliate orange (formerly Poncirus - now Citrus, too). For short terms their hardiness is listed as -10°C to -15°C! I don't have them planted out in the garden but in pots and they are much more robust and healthy than any calamondin or lemon bush I have ever had. They are also grafted onto the roots of Poncirus which is not prone to rotting away over winter in cool conditions. My Thomasville C. has six little fruits (size of small eggs) that are ripening in the conservatory now and the taste is pretty good.

  • I have a beautiful 20 year old camellia bush in the garden which is now blighted by the scourge of scale insects- the sticky gunge of which I am removing, leaf by leaf, with a toothbrush and soapy water. It's taking forever and I fear re-infestation on the cleaned leaves. Any advice for a quicker method or what is this "fatty organic stuff" spray? Help, please.
  • I am moving into a new house in about 3 weeks. I have had a garden in the past, but have lived in a flat for 4 years.
    I am planning to put decking in half the garden to appease my husband, therefore the rest of the garden needs to be usefull, and I would like to plant edible plants only if possible
    The garden is South West facing with a brick wall on the east wall.
    Is it possible to plant exclusively for eating, and if so can you help me to choose?
  • I am sitting in my house in Barga'Italy,and i am looking at lemon tree in a pot .It has lemonsand flowers on it .The flowers give of a lovely sent in the room
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