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Citrus Fruit Problems
For many gardeners, after working very hard to care for their citrus tree, their biggest frustration is either no fruit production or badly damaged fruit. There are many common problems, which cause poor quality or inedible fruit. Many of these conditions can be remedied.
Fruit drop is characterized by large amounts of the young newly formed fruit dropping from the tree. This often occurs early in the fruit formation cycle when the fruit is less than about 1 inch in diameter. It is common for a tree to drop some of its fruit during the growing season as part of the natural thinning process. If more fruit drop than normal is identified, this is often a sign that the tree is under stress, which could be caused by a late frost, a lack of water (or even too much water) or an inadequate supply of soil nutrients – fertilizers.
To help remedy excessive fruit drop or the undersized growth of the fruit ensure that the tree is properly fertilized every year early in the spring growing season, with a fertilizer specially formulated for citrus trees. The TreeHelp Annual Care Kit for Citrus is a good annual fertilization program.
Citrus scab is characterized by a large number of small raised marks or scab on the fruit. The leaves can also show similar brown, scale and scab like lesions. In cases of significant infection, the fruit will not develop normally and the tree will undergo early leaf drop. The scab is caused by a fungus that attacks the surfaces of the fruit and leaves. It is encouraged by damp conditions caused by a wet spring period or the use of over-head irrigation and sprinklers.
To control citrus scab, spray the tree with Captan Fungicide. The Captan fungicide should be applied in the late winter before the new spring growth starts and a second spray application should be applied shortly after the petals have dropped from the fruit blossoms. To help reduce the spread and growth of Citrus scab never use a water sprinkler on a citrus tree. When watering a citrus tree, always use a soaker (or drip) hose on the ground near the tree’s dripline
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