Citrus & Avocado Growing Guide

Citrus trees and avocado trees require the same type of care! Use the guide below to help you during the planting and growing process.

  1. Pick a pot 4″- 6” larger than the current pot your citrus is in. If planting in ground, select the most protected corner of your garden (typically the south/southeast corner) which will help protect it from cold northwesterly winds in winter.

  2. Citrus like a well-draining, mildly acidic soil (between 6-7 on pH scale) but will tolerate a standard potting soil. If you’re going with regular potting soil, we recommend choosing a high quality mix like Happy Frog for a healthier and stronger root system.
    Citrus specific soils that we carry: Citrus Mix or Strawberry Fields

  3. For both in ground and container planting, plant the tree at the same depth as it was in the original grow pot. Don’t cover the graft point with soil, you don’t want the rootstock putting out it’s own growth! 

  4. Citrus need at least 4-6 hours of direct sun a day for best fruit production. While young, they do benefit from afternoon shade.

  5. Water in thoroughly after planting. The water should run out the bottom of the pot which is a sign that the soil is adequately drenched. Don’t let water sit in the saucer for an extended period of time, they are sensitive to root rot. 

  6. Young citrus need water every few days or when the top 2″- 3” inches of soil is dry. We highly recommend testing it with your finger until you get the hang of how much water your tree requires.

  7. Apply a citrus specific fertilizer when new growth appears in spring. Fertilize monthly from March through October for best results. Citrus fertilizers we carry: Microlife Citrus & Fruit or Happy Frog Citrus & Avocado

  8. Citrus will generally produce their best fruit after 3 years of growth, but they will occasionally put on blooms in the first few springs. Enjoy the scent of the blossoms, but it’s beneficial to cut them off before they produce fruit so the tree can redirect its energy into growing strong roots and a healthy tall trunk. 

  9. Anytime the temperature drops below 35 degrees, make sure to protect your tree with either freeze covers, blankets, or by bringing it inside. A light frost can kill young trees so make sure to protect them for the first 3-5 years, or until true bark forms on the trunk. 

For further reading, see Texas A&M AgriLife Extension articles: 

Patio Citrus https://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/patiocitrus/index.html 

Citrus Fact Sheet https://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/fruit-nut/fact-sheets/citrus/