How to prune potted citrus fruits

How to prune potted citrus fruits

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How to prune potted citrus fruits:pruning techniques and training methods for citrus fruits in pots. From lemon to orange, from Chinese mandarin to bergamot, all on thepruning of citrus in pots.

How to grow citrus fruits in pots

Thecitrus fruits in potsthey need special care to produce a good harvest. Amongcitrus fruitsbest suited tocultivation in potswe highlight the bitter orange, bergamot, sweet Roman lime, lemon and grapefruit. Japanese mandarin (more rounded) and Chinese mandarin (smaller and oval shaped) can also begrown in potswithout much difficulty. Regardless of the species you are growing, generallycitrus fruitsare grown in jar with the sapling training system. There sapling shape, as well as the other popular forms for growing in pots, aim to maximize the yield and minimize the space occupied by the plant making it compatible with life in jar.

In this article we will talk about the breeding forms and thepruningapplicable to anycitrus cultivated in pot.

How to prune potted citrus fruits

Thecitrus fruits in potsthey must be “modeled” throughpruning, in this way it is possible to obtain different forms of farming. The most widespread form of farming, as stated, is the sapling one which sees a more collected and rounded crown, however this is not the only possibility you have. The forms ofpruningthat you can use for your potted plants are:

  • free form
  • Circled with reeds
  • Sapling
  • Back

The sapling and espalier shape are the most suitable for those who have very little space available. The free form is the most "simple"to get while we, for thecultivation of citrus fruits in pots, we recommend the training methodcircled with reeds as we consider it the most functional way to manage the growth of a citrus fruits in pots. This is a more professional form of breeding and requires some more knowledge but… it's worth it.

Citrus pruning with free form

The free form has the advantage of allowing the sun's rays to penetrate inside the foliage, allowing the ripening of the fruits most hidden by the foliage.

Citrus pruning with circled shape with canes

The Circhiata con reeds provides for the inner part of the canopy empty so light and air can penetrate it. The development of the branches is horizontal so as to stimulate abundant fruiting even in young plants.

Citrus pruning with sapling shape

Acitrus in potraised as a sapling, it has a globular crown that develops on a more or less high stem, usually from 100 to 150 cm.

Both in the sapling and in the free form, it is advisable to keep from a minimum of 3 to a maximum of 5 branches so as to allow the light to reach every point of the plant. It is possible to leave a few more branches but you will have to deal more often with various diseases and parasites.

Citrus pruning with espalier shape

Espalier farming has the advantage of the circled shape and is also flat, therefore easier to grow in small spaces.

This type of breeding is suitable for those who intendgrowing citrus in potsin geographic areas with a cold climate: if placed close to a well-exposed wall, even those in Northern Italy can enjoy the luxury ofcultivate citrusin the garden.

Just like in the circled pruning form with canes, even in the espalier one, more branches are allowed to develop only, in this case, the branches must all be placed on the same plane

When to prune citrus fruits in pots, the ideal period

About two weeks after bringing the plant back outdoors (in Northern Italy this occurs in April), perform a lightpruningto restore the foliage in shape by eliminating only those twigs that give the plant a messy appearance. Branches damaged by the cold must also be eliminated.

When to prune citrus in pots?
In April, in the north and central-north of Italy.

When to prune citrus in pots?
In early March, in the south and in areas with a mild climate.

The second pruning of citrus in pots

A secondcitrus pruningit should be performed between May and June (both in the north and in the south), when the first vegetative phase of the plants has ended.

In this case, about a third of the old branches are eliminated, as it will be onepruningof rejuvenation. During the secondpruningof the year, all suckers - vigorous branches that develop from the trunk or the main branches - must be removed as they do not produce flower and steal precious sap from the plant.

The third pruning of potted citrus fruits

The third pruning of the year is not always necessary. It should be done in September (both in the north and in the south) and any twigs that give the foliage a decomposed appearance are eliminated.

Scissors for pruning potted citrus fruits

There are many types of pruning shears on the market, from traditional ones with curved blade, to pneumatic or ratchet shears. Each type of scissors is well suited for pruning some tree species and others a little less.

Although many agronomists, for thepruning of citrus fruits, recommend the use ofscissors with curved blade, for pruning lemon, orange and other citrus plants, the classic double-edged scissor is more suitable, which you probably already have in your agricultural tool kit!

If you do not have a double-edged blade scissors, you can buy one from your trusted agricultural consortium or by taking advantage of the online purchase. On Amazon there is no shortage of good product proposals for a few tens of euros. Among the best scissors with a double-edged blade, I point out onemade in Italy, with interchangeable blades and with ergonomic handle. The scissors in question can be bought on Amazon at a price of 30.30 euros with free shipping costs. For all information you can visit "This Page“.

You will notice that it looks different than other double-edged scissors because of the handle .... however, still on Amazon, there is no shortage of much cheaper models that can be bought for less than 10 euros.

Cultivation of citrus fruits in pots

For the treatment of diseases, fertilization and repotting of citrus fruits, I refer you to the guide:How to grow citrus fruits in pots.