Lemon Farming | A guide to growing Lemon fruit trees
The following post is about Lemon Farming or How to grow Lemon Tree Commercially.
Little About Lemon Farming
Citrus is one of the most important fruit crop, which is highly demanded by the people throughout the globe. And, lemon fruit is the most important fruit of the citrus category.
Lemon is mostly asked because of its extensive bitterness. It is also known for its juice and pulp throughout the different portion of the world. It is mostly asked for its extensive bitterness. Its extensive bitterness is beneficiary in curing numbers of disease and disorder. It is full of amazing medicinal value, and it is especially recommended to the pregnant women.
So, one can easily create a big profit through growing this citrus fruit, lemon fruits in a big area at commercial scale, or can grow it as indoor fruit plant tree.
So, let us learn how to grow Lemon trees commercially.
There are numbers of Lemon varieties, which are popular for growing in different geological regions according to their climate conditions and soil requirement.
However, here I had listed some of the most popular varieties of Lemon fruit tree, which are highly recommended for growing in different climate condition with high yielding capacity.
- Verna – Its production accounts for about 70 % of the total lemon production in the world. It is originated in Spain. And it is mainly produced in Alicante and Murcia. It bears an average to large size lemon fruit, with a pronounced nipple & well-developed neck. The skin is rough, thick, and irregular, but the pulp is tender. It has juice with an appropriate acidity content, although it is less abundant than in other varieties.
- Fina – It comes from an old Spanish variety produced near the river Segura. Its productions account for about for 20% of the production of total lemon fruit production. It bears Spherical or oval fruit, with a short and smooth nipple with thin skin. The pulp is contained highly juice content along with few seeds in it. And, the tree is vigorous, highly productive and thorny in nature.
- Eureka – It is mainly cultivated outside the Mediterranean area. Especially in South Africa, California, Australia, Argentina, and Israel. It bears fruit with average to thin thickness skin, usually smooth. However, it is bit rough. The fruit contains very fewer seeds with a higher level of acidity juice content.
- Lisbon – It is an Australian lemon variety, cultivated in the great areas of the desert of Arizona. It bears fruits similar to the Eureka lemon variety. However, it has a less definite nipple with the rough texture of the skin. And, the juice levels and its acidity level in fruit are similar to that of Eureka variety.
- Primofiori – It bears rounded & oval shape lemon fruit, with a short and smooth nipple. Along with thin skin and juicy pulp with very fewer seeds.
- Villafranca – It bears fruit with more seeds in comparison to the Eureka variety. However, the fruit tree is more vigorous. And, it is very difficult to distinguish both varieties when they are adult.
- Femminello – It includes several selections of average size lemons with quite thick skin & less juice content fruit than other lemon varieties, but more acidic content. However, the seeds amount depends on harvesting purpose.
- Génova – This variety is mostly cultivated in South America and surrounding area. It bears fruits having a smooth skin and a substantial and acid pulp.
- Meyer – This variety is hybrid of the lemon tree, orange tree and the mandarin tree. It bears fruits similar to the orange, large in size and round shape, with a small nipple. Th fruit skin is yellowish orange, smooth, soft and thin in nature. However, it lacks the characteristic smell of lemons. The pulp of this variety is dark yellow, very juicy and tender with more or less 10 seeds inside in it.
Where Do Lemon Tree Grow?
For commercial growing of Lemon fruit trees, it is essential to obtain optimum lemon fruit production with less input and efforts. And, this is possible only with a suitable cultivar grown in suitable climate condition and preferred soil. So, learn what soil and climate condition do lemon fruit tree preferred for optimum growth of fruit plant.
Climate Conditions Required for Lemon farming
When it comes to climate requirement of this fruit plant, the sub-tropical climate conditions are best suitable for optimum growth with excellent fruit development of this crop.
Keep in mind that a temp. below 40 ‘C is dangerous for the young plant’s growth and development. And, a Soil temperature about 250 ‘C is best suitable for optimum root growth.
Dry, arid climate conditions along with well-defined summer with low rainfall (range – 75 cm to 250 cm) is most favorable for the excellent growth of this fruit crop.
Do not that High humidity ensures the spreading of numbers of diseases. Frost is also highly injurious to this crop. During summer, Hot wind results in the desiccation and flower drop with young fruits drop.
It can also grow up to some altitude, around 2000 m and adapted to a cooler climate condition.
Location & Land Selection for lemon farming
Lemon can be grown over a wide range of soils. However, few soil properties such as soil fertility, soil reaction, drainage, free lime and salt concentrations, etc. are some very important factors which determine the planting density, plant grown, and amount of fruit yield. So, care to be taken while selection land for lemon farming.
Lemon fruit plant can flourish well on light soils having a good drainage capacity. And, deep soils having pH range from 5.5 to 7.5 are considered as the best suitable for lemon tree farming. But, do note that they can be grown up to a pH ranges from 4 to 9. Havier soils and light loam soils with well drainage facility subsoils are supposed to be the ideal for growing lemon trees.
Do note that the presence of calcium carbonate (CaCo3) in very high concentration within the feeding zone may affect the growth adversely.
How to Plant Lemon Fruit Plant?
In commercial lemon fruit farming, planting method, plant density, placing between lemon plants, time of plantation, and method of planting are more responsible for the fruit production and yield. So, care to be taken in all these crucial points of Lemon farming.
Soil Preparation for lemon farming
Growing lemons on suitable land ensure healthy fruit production with excellent quality of fruits. So, the land should be plowed, cross plowed and leveled well before planting seedlings on the soil.
In mountainous regions, transplanting should be done on terraces against the slopes. In such type of land, high-density transplanting of seedlings is possible as aerial space is more available than that in flat land.
Time of Planting In Lemon Farming
This subtropical crop can be cultivated throughout the year. However, the best time for planting lemon trees in from June to August.
For planting lemon young seedlings, a pit having a size of two feet of each (60 cm X 60 cm X 60 cm) should be dug. Then, about 10 kg of well rotten FarmYard Manure along with 500 gm of superphosphate should be supplemented per each pit before planting lemon young seedlings to the pit.
However, one can easily grow lemon fruit plant throughout the whole year with the facility of a good irrigation system.
Planting Density & Spacing in lemon farming
The planting spacing in lemon farming varies according to the growing cultivar of the lemon fruit (lemon variety), the soil on which cultivations is to be done, growing climate conditions, etc.
However, generally, the normal planting spacing is 4.5 m X 4.5 m. One can go for high-density planting to plant more plants in comparison to the normal planting spacing (4.5 m X 4.5 m) on the basis of soil fertility and cultivar yield capacity.
With the normal planting spacing (4.5 m X 4.5 m) in commercial lemon farming, on can easily maintain about 500 plants per unit hectare land (exactly – Plant population – 494 plants / ha.
However, in too light soils, the planting spacing should be reduced to 4.0 m X 4.0 m. Whereas in the fertile soils, and in higher rainfall regions, the planting spacing should be 5 m x 5m for the optimum growth and development to obtain excellent quality fruit plant.
Irrigation In Lemon Farming
Lemon seedling needs life-saving watering up to next one year after the transplanting seedlings on the land. Especially, during winter and summer season. Watering should be followed on regular basis.
Irrigations are the primary task, which is responsible for plants healthy growth and healthy development, especially during flowering and fruiting period. It also helps the fruit to attain better shape and marketable size. Under the unirrigated condition, there are chances of damaging to spring blossom are high. And the next crop maturing in October to November may be heavier.
Always avoid overwatering. Because overwatering may lead to root rot and collar rot easily to occur.
Light irrigation in the lemon field with high frequency is always beneficial for healthy yield. Do not that water containing more than 1000 ppm salts for Irrigation in lemon farming is injurious the quality of fruits.
However, the quantity of water & number of irrigation depends on the soil type and growth stage of the crop. Partial drying out of the soil in the spring season should be done to enhance the growth rate.
Application of Manures & Fertilisers in Lemon Farming
Lemon seedling should be manure in about 3 equal doses, 3 times in a calendar year, in Feb, June, and Sept. However, the dose of manure and fertilizer varies on the basis of soil type, age, and growth of plants.
The manuring dose should be increased every year in equal proportionate to reach the full quantity on the 8th year.
Fertilisers should be spread on the ground up to the leaf drip and should be mixed up with the soil by light spading.
A light Irrigation should be applied to overcome the moisture stress, just after the application of manures and fertilizers. Also, try to give one or two micronutrient mixtures to enhance the plant growth and development for the healthy fruit production.
Intercultural Operations in Lemon Farming
Plowing, basin spading, weed control, etc., are some important inter-culture activities for the soil aeration and plant health. Chemical means of weed control with a suitable weedicide such as simazine, Grammaxone, Diuron, Terbsal, etc. should be adopted to minimize the weeds in the field.
Intercrops between plants
Leguminous vegetables such as cowpeas, peas, french bean, or any other vegetables, etc., can be grown in lemon orchards.
However, Intercropping is advisable only for the initial 2 to 4 years of planting seedlings.
Trimming & Pruning of Plants
Trimming and pruning of lemon plant should be done in order to enhance the growth of strong trunk. Around all shoots in the first 40 to 50 cm from the ground level developed in the early stage of growth should be eliminated. keep the central plant to remain open.
Branches of fruiting plant should be well scattered to all sides. Cross twigs along with water suckers are to be eliminated earlier.
However, the fruit-bearing trees need little or about no pruning. So, all injured, diseased, and drooping branches along with the dead wood should be removed at regular interval to initiating citrus lemon greening.
Pests & Diseases in Lemon Tree Farming
Lemon Tree | Pests & Pests Control
The lemon tree belongs to citrus fruit plant category. So, there are chances of appearing numbers of hazardous pests and insect, which can minimize your fruit production and also the quality of fruits. So, it is a better idea to learn them and control them as sooner as they appear in your field.
The following is a list of some common pests and diseases, that are commonly observed in the commercial lemon tree farming. –
- Mealy Bugs
- Cottony Cushion Scale
- Sooty Mold
- Spider mites
- Fungus gnat
- Citrus Thrips
- Melanose fungus
- Citrus Canker
- Powdery mildew
- Collar Rot
- Lemon Scab
- Black Spot
All of these insects and disease, especially disease occurs due to deficiency of various types of minerals, and macronutrients. So, try to avoid any kind of deficiency in your soil. And, if present, correct it by supplementing suitable supplement.
Also, try to make use of liquid pesticide to avoid pests and insects to ruin your field.
Lemon Fruit Harvesting
Harvesting of quality fruit should be carried out at a different interval. Usually, try to pick mature fruit at about 3 to 4 times a year. However, quality of fruit must be checked before harvesting or picked.
They attain a proper size with a rounded shape fruit and attractive color having TSS to the Acid ratio of 12:1. And, at this stage, are best suitable for harvesting.
However, the harvesting time and season vary on the basis of market demand and variety of lemon. In general, harvesting of picking of fruit should be done from mid of January to mid of February till the end of February.
Try to harvest at proper mature fruitage to get an excellent yield of fruit. And, for the exporting purpose of lemon, harvesting should be done, as sooner as they attain their maturity shape and size with proper texture.
The yield of lemon farming varies on the basis of fertility of soil, the productivity of soil, variety of lemon grown, climate conditions and yielding capacity of lemon variety.
However, in commercial lemon farming, from the 2nd year of planting seedlings on the field, more than 50 fruit per plant tree can be picked. Which goes increases from year to next year.
And, from the 6 to 7 year of planting lemon trees, one can easily pick about 750 fruit per tree and even more than it per each year.
After harvesting fruit, a proper washing with clean water should be done in order to bring excellent fruit color. After washing dipped the fruits in Chlorinated water @ 2.5 ml per Liter of water. After that dried them partially. Then, do Citrashine wax coating with foam.
It improves fruit appearance and also maintains a good quality of fruits. After that, packing of fruit should be done after drying out them. Fruits should be packed in boxes
Have a happy lemon Farming with Excellent fruit production with best quality fruits!!!😄