HOW LONG DOES IT TAKE TO GROW A LEMON TREE FROM SEED?

How long does it take to grow a lemon tree from seed?

Lemons trees are wonderful plants, evoking mediterranean holidays, limoncello cocktails and fragrant jasmine-scented blooms. As exotic as they are to our northern European eyes they are surprisingly robust and while all the commercial cultivars are vegetatively propagated lemons are easily grown by seed. In countries subject to colder environments, growing lemon trees from seed is still something you can do at home and your subsequent plants will be perfectly happy growing outside in a suitably sized pot, just make sure you bring the whole thing under under protection during the winter period. So it's one thing putting a seed in some compost, buy how long does it take to grow a lemon tree from seed?

Lemon seeds

Well there is no fixed time for this as it will depend on the temperature of the root environment. Plus before you even start you will want to make sure you have planted viable seed. You can purchase you seed online or from a trusted supplier or simply purchase some lemons and collect the seed yourself. Sponge off any dried pulp and then place the seeds in a bowl of water, discarding any which float. Either plant any that are left or if you only want a couple, choose the largest seeds. You will be pleased to know that lemons seeds generally have a high rate of germination.

Using a good quality compost such as John Innes 'Seed and Cutting', perhaps mixed in with a little ericaceous compost, plant you seed no more than 1 cm below the compost surface and water in. Keep the soil permanently moist but do not allow it to become waterlogged.

So to answer the question, if you simply place your pots on the kitchen windowsill gemination can be painfully slow. We are talking 6 weeks to a couple of months possibly more but be aware if the kitchd isn't particularly warm the seeds may just rot away in the pots. If you can maintain a temperature in the low 20 degree Celsius then you can expect germination to occur within 3-4 weeks and if you can maintain day temperatures arounf 26-28 degrees Celsius then it can be as fast as 2-3 weeks, however once germinated drop temperatures back down to the low 20's.  

But how do you maintain such warm temperatures in the compost? Well you have technology to help you with that, All you need is a heated propagator or if you want to produce an lemon orchards worth of plants build a propagation bench with soil heating cables.

Good luck with growing your lemon seeds, they really are surprisingly easy to do.

One more thing, do not make the mistake of placing your seeds in the airing cupboard, temperatures there are not controllable and can reach temperatures high enough to heat sterilize your seeds 

 For related articles click onto the following links:

CAN I GROW A LEMON TREE OUTSIDE IN THE UK?

CAN I GROW A LEMON TREE IN THE UK?

HOW TO GET RID OF BLACK MOULD ON A LEMON TREE

No comments: