Areas that receive no or only very light frosts and have warm to hot summers can grow a wide range of citrus. Juicy Valencia and sweet Washington Navel are two popular oranges for temperate areas, providing you with delicious oranges over many months.
Most mandarins, including Imperial and puffy-skinned Emperors, are suited to growing in mild areas. In cool temperate areas, satsuma mandarins (Citrus unshiu), such as Engall's Seedless, are the best choice. For lemon lovers, look for acidic Eureka lemons or the sweeter 'Lemonade' lemon. Both yellow and red fleshed varieties of grapefruit will also do well. A lime that will do well in temperate zones is a 'limequat', a tangy lime cumquat hybrid with fruit that can be eaten whole, as the rind is relatively sweet.
By creating or utilising 'microclimates' (spots that are protected from weather extremes) within your temperate garden, you can further extend the types of citrus you can grow. Look for areas that are protected from winds or frosts (including next to buildings), or create a sheltered area with attractive screening panels. In arid areas, ensure you mulch around the root zone of citrus to reduce moisture loss from the soil and a create a windbreak to shelter trees from hot and drying winds.
To give citrus trees a great start, mix Yates Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser into soil in the planting hole when planting a new citrus tree, and then water it in well. Regular watering of citrus trees is important as they have a shallow root system and can dry out quickly.
Citrus trees are hungry all the time, particularly in spring when they're flowering and producing fresh new foliage. Feed them every 1-2 weeks with Yates Thrive Citrus & Fruit Liquid Plant Food to promote healthy leaf growth and a great harvest.
Citrus protection tip: Protect new citrus foliage from citrus leaf miner damage by spraying trees every 5-14 days with Yates Nature's Way Citrus & Ornamental Spray.