Would you like to have an orange tree but you don’t have enough space? Don’t worry: we have the solution. Get a Calamondin. This is a fruit tree that can be kept in a pot throughout its life, since it does not usually exceed 2m and does not need much space to grow. In addition, it has evergreen leaves, so it can be used as an ornamental plant throughout the year.
Discover what care does it require to be able to give fruits of an exquisite flavor.
Origin and characteristics of calamondín
The calamondín, also known as Chinese orange or dwarf orange, is a hybrid fruit tree between Citrus reticulata y Fortunella daisy. Its scientific name is Citrofortunella x microcarpaand grows in hot climates, with mild and short-term frosts (down to -3ºC). Its growth rate is rapid, and it can live for about a centuryas long as it is given a series of care.
It is a small tree or evergreen shrub that reaches a maximum height of 2 meterswith a dense crown, with few or no spines. The leaves are elliptical, with a length of 5 to 10 centimeters, of a bright green color. It produces small, white axillary flowers, and spherical or oval fruits of about 3cm in diameter, orange-red in color, with sweet and acid pulp, but edible.
What are the care of the miniature orange tree?
If you dare to have a copy, we recommend that you provide it with the following care:
It is a plant that, by resisting cold and frost well, Ideally, it should be grown outdoors all year round.full sun. As it is relatively small and does not have invasive roots, it can be grown in any corner, even in pots.
But yes, if you want to put it near the pool, it is preferable that it be at least 1 or 2 meters from it, or more if you have children who love to dive into it, since chlorine damages the leaves. .
Irrigation must be frequentespecially in summer. Water 3-4 times a week in the hottest months, and 1-2 a week the rest of the year.
If in doubt, wait a few days before watering again or check the moisture of the soil or substrate, for example with a digital moisture meter or a thin wooden stick.
If you have it in a pot, it is not advisable to put a plate under it or put it in a pot without holes, as stagnant water will rot the roots.
Being a plant whose fruits are edible, it must be paid with Organic fertilizers, either in powder (horse manure, worm castings) or liquids (guano).
You usually have chlorosis problems due to a lack of calcium and magnesium, so If you see that the leaves turn yellow, leaving the nerves more visible, it is also advisable to put the chopped eggshells around the trunkand add some magnesium powder.
- Garden: it is important that the soil has good drainage, mixing the soil with 20% perlite if necessary.
- Flower pot: fill with universal substrate, or with mulch.
Small pruning has to be done, removing branches that are diseased or weak. The best time to do this is in spring, after the risk of frost has passed.
Use pruning tools previously disinfected with a disinfectant product. In this way, the risk of infection will be reduced and you will keep your calamondin protected.
Planting or transplanting time
In springwhen the frosts have passed. Whether you want to plant it in the garden or change it pot, you need to be careful with the roots, avoiding handling them excessively.
So that the root ball or soil bread does not crumble, the ideal is, first, wait until the roots have occupied the entire pot, something that you will know when you see that they come out through the drainage holes, and second, water a day before to proceed to plant it or transplant it.
The plant is bearing fruit from late summer to fall. They can be caught when they reach their final size and color, and when you notice that they begin to be a little soft to the touch.
Plagues and diseases
It is quite sturdy, but in spring and especially summer it can be affected by mealybugs which are removed well with a brush soaked in pharmacy alcohol, or even with a baby wipe.
Multiply by seeds and cuttings in spring:
The seeds can be sown in seedling trays with orchard substrate or mulch, placing a maximum of 2 units in each socket. Then, it is watered and placed outside, in semi-shade.
If all goes well, they will germinate in about two months.
To get new specimens, it is usually proceeded to multiply it by branch cuttings, cutting one that measures at least 20 centimeters. Then, the base is impregnated with homemade rooting agents or rooting hormones, and they are planted in a pot with, for example, previously moistened vermiculite. Finally, it is placed outside, in semi-shade, and everything is covered with transparent plastic that will be made some small holes with the tip of a pair of scissors so that the air can circulate.
In a month, if everything has gone well, it will emit its own roots.
The calamondin it resists well cold and frost down to -12ºC. In addition, it is not harmed by high temperatures (30-35ºC) as long as the substrate or soil is humid.
What uses is it given?
It has several:
- Ornamental: it is undoubtedly the most widespread. It is a beautiful little tree, easy to care for, that can even be worked as a bonsai.
- Culinary: its fruits are like oranges but in miniature, and like them, they can be consumed as a dessert or snack. In addition, a drink known as calamondín liquor is also prepared. Of course, if I had to compare them, I would say that the calamondin ones are somewhat more acidic and that may not appeal to sensitive palates.
Where to buy?
You can get it from here:
Have a happy harvest .