How Lemon Trees Make You a Better Garden Lover


Most of us buy lemons from markets and stores for its sour taste used in cooking recipes. They are readily available in markets, stores and cheap. Growing lemons in your home not only guides your health, but also adds beauty to your yards.

Citrus Limon is the scientific name for lemons. It is an evergreen tree in the family of Rutaceae which is native to India and grows well in Mexico, China, Argentina and Brazil. It contains 5-6% of citric acid with pH around 2.2 and are sour to taste. Usually the plant grows to a height of 10-15 feet, depending on the variety. Pulp and rind of lemons are used in drinks, cooking and baking.

Lemon Nutrition

Lemons are a rich source of vitamin C, calcium, magnesium, iron and potassium. It also contains proteins, carbohydrates, fats and antioxidants like citric acid, eriocitrin and flavonoids. One serving, 100 grams of lemon juice contains 29 calories and is cholesterol free.

Companion Plants

Companion planting is mainly used for controlling pests, pollination and to increase the productivity of the crop. Lemons love to grow with…

  • Basil
  • Thyme
  • Cilantro
  • Rosemary

They can also be planted along with flowering plants for an aromatic presence around lemon tree…

  • Roses
  • Jasmine
  • Marigolds
  • Nasturtium
  • Black-eyed Susan
  • Scented Geranium

Lemon Varieties

There are many varieties of lemon out of which Eureka variety is mostly cultivated in Asian countries. Here is the list of some popular lemon varieties with its height and growing season.

S. No Lemon Variety Growing Season Height (in feet)
1 Meyer Spring fall 6-10
2 Ponderosa Spring 8-12
3 Eureka Spring fall 10-15
4 Lisbon Winter 10-15
5 Variegated pink lemon Spring 8-12

Step by Step Procedure to Grow Lemons

To have juicy lemons in your home, start growing from seeds in pots. It is an easy and inexpensive way to grow lemon indoors. For this you need to maintain suitable conditions like soil pH, water and sunlight, nutrients thrive faster…

  • Prepare potting mix loamy or sandy soil, though lemon grows well in any type soil with good drainage. Maintain the soil pH between 5.5 & 6.5. Using salty or heavy clay soils may slow down the plant growth.
  • Choose a small pot about 4-5 inches wide and 6-8 inches deep. Make sure the pot has holes at the bottom for drainage.
  • Make a deep hole into the soil using your fingers. Select a lemon seed variety and place them in a hole. Cover it with a soil variety.
  • Place the pot in warm location or maintain the best temperature to grow lemons is 68-80F. Water the soil when it becomes dry for every 2-3 days.
  • It takes 2 weeks time to germinate seedlings and reaches to a height of 8-10 cms. And is ready to shift to outdoors (sunny site).
  • When the plant matures, provide it with proper nutrients to grow strong and healthy. Prune the leaves to encourage the growth of bushes. Be careful prune only the dead and diseased leaves & branches to ensure new growth.
  • Pests and diseases like aphids, spider mites, mealy bugs, scales, powdery mildew and root rot are mainly due to the improper maintenance of plants.
  • Use organic matter such as compost, vermiculite or liquid fertilizers to deter pests & disease problem and to bloom quickly. You can also fertilize the plant once in every 2 weeks using N-P-K fertilizers in the ratio of 12-6-6.
  • Harvesting time depends on the type of variety and growing conditions. Some lemon varieties may produce fruits after 5 years. To determine whether the fruit is ripe see whether the fruit is heavy, soft and yellow.

Can I Propagate Lemons from Cuttings?

They propagate well from cuttings resulting in a great disease resistant than commercially growing lemon trees. It’s easy to propagate lemon trees from stem cuttings as you just need to use sterile tools and proper cutting conditions to grow into a healthy and productive tree.

Take stem cuttings about 10-15cms long early in the morning and remove the bottom leaves. Also use a knife or scissors to cut at the base of the stem where roots likely to develop. Now, insert the base of the cutting into a jar of water. Place it in sunlight and change water for every 2-3 days. Within a week root develops and is ready to transplant to outdoors. When you place the cutting in soil make sure to add mulch that keeps the soil moist. Using this method; takes less time to bear fruits with high yield than growing from seeds.


  • Harvest lemons only when they are ripe that is soft and yellow.
  • Keep the plant in sunlight for a minimum of 6-8 hours a day.
  • Fertilize the plant only when it matures or reaches to a certain height.
  • Avoid overwatering the lemons plants as it may result in root rot disease.
  • Make sure the pot has holes at the bottom for air circulation and proper drainage.
  • Pinch off the young buds in winter or spring, fall to establish new and quick growth.
  • Keep children and pets away from fertilizers as it can cause severe health problems.
  • Wear safety goggles, shoes and protective masks prevent from allergies and infections at the time of fertilizing lemon plants.

Health Benefits

Lemons are sour to taste as they contain citric acid; a weak organic acid found in many fruits and vegetables that helps to treat several health problems that are listed below.

Weight loss:  The antioxidant property of lemon such as d-limonone and hesperidin reduces weight caused by high fat diet. It also improves the insulin resistance in your body.

Digestion:  Drinking lemon water helps to digest the food easily. The flavonoids break down the food in the stomach, thereby improving the digestion and gut health.

Cancer:  Lemon peels are an excellent source of turbines that kills cancer cells. It successfully destroys malignant cells, including breast, colon and lung cancer than chemotherapy. It is safe, healthy to use and leaves healthy cells unharmed.

Skin:  Vitamin C found in lemon may reduce skin wrinkling. The antibacterial property of lemon also helps to treat acne and blackhead problems. For this take a lemon slice and squeeze the juice on your face to remove black spots and look fresh.

Liver: Lemon juice improves the liver functioning by protecting against toxins and reduces fat in the liver. When it is mixed with distilled water and consumed regularly acts as a liver detox agent and benefits the body in numerous ways.

Brain function:  Flavonoids, eriocitrin and citric acid in lemon helps to break down the cells in the nervous system. They also help to protect against the events that cause great damage to the nervous system. Recent studies show that lie on juice boosts the functioning of the brain in adults by 25%.

Side Effects:  When you eat or consume lemon juice in excess amounts it may result in side effects to some extent like…..

  • Headache
  • Tooth erosion
  • Migraines
  • Nausea
  • Dehydration
  • Sunburns
  • Ulcers

    Is lemon tree a perennial?

    Lemon tree is an evergreen flowering plant in the family of Rutaceae.  These are the perennials of the citrus genus that is native to Asia and introduced to Europe and Mediterranean regions.

    How long does it take the plants to bear lemon fruit?

    The plant produces fruit within 4-12 months when it starts blossoming and is ready to harvest in winter and summer season. Once your lemon plants start bearing fruit, it can continuously produce fruits throughout the year under suitable conditions.

    Where should I plant a lemon tree?

    Plant lemon seeds in a wide variety of soils like acidic, well-drain, poor soil to establish a healthy plant. You can also prefer potting mix loamy or sandy soil to grow lemons. Using salty or heavy clay soils may slow down the plant growth. So plant it in a location where it can thrive quickly, bloom flowers and produces fruits.

    When to trim the branches of a lemon tree?

    Trim off the branches of the lemon tree in cool weather season. During winter season lemon tree will have less leaves. If you are trimming or pruning at the time of fruit bearing or blossoms, it will not encourage the plant to grow.

    Is lemon safe for your pets to eat?

    Humans can eat lemons that have many health benefits. But they are toxic to your pets like cats and dogs as they contain essential compounds which results in stomach upset, vomiting, weakness, diarrhea when consumed.

Start growing juicy lemons in a large container from cuttings that monitors your health. If you have amazing ideas about growing lemons in your home, please share your experience with us.

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Swetha Datti

View Comments

    • Please review the article once... It's at the time of fertilizing lemon plants.
      Wearing safety goggles, protective face masks and shoes at the time of fertilizng helps to protect yourself from eye infections, skin rashes, wounds and from inhaling harmful chemicals that damages your health.

    • Yes, you can opt for the same method for trimming citrus oranges.
      Trimming the orange trees may depends upon the climatic conditions;if you live in a warmer regions do it in spring season and cooler regions delay the trimming process. But when you want to trim off orange tree, make sure you do it after the fruit setting or at the time of flower blooming (not the flowers).

  • I have a lemon tree in my garden. initially it was in a pot and after a couple of months we had a good harvest of lemons. when the tree grew bigger the pot was not sufficient so i planted it on the ground. since it was replanted only once it bore fruits and now after a long spell there is one fruit. we had also trimmed it twice when it had overgrown. what can i do to get a full harvest of fruits.

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Swetha Datti

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