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Author Topic: Some citrus seedlings flower at an age of approximately 18 months.  (Read 362 times)

Heinrich

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In June 2015, two of my citrus seedlings flowered at an age of about 18 months. As I returned from holiday, a seedling of a Star Ruby grapefruit surprised me with a beautiful flower. A second seedling, seeds from Ortanique, and the same age, was already finished.

Star Ruby grapefruit and Ortanique tangor


Star Ruby grapefruit


Ortanique tangor


During my next visit to Eugen Schleipfer, our local and well-reputed citrus grower, I mentioned this flowering. He showed me a large grapefruit tree and told me, freely translated from German:  “This grapefruit tree flowered at a very early age, but never again since then. Don´t expect your seedlings to flower again, within the next 10 years.” Well, none of them flowered in 2016 and there are no flower buds in 2017.

Now, this year, a third citrus seedling is flowering for me. I like to eat Sweetie grapefruits, when available during autumn and winter.  Most fruits are seedless, but some of the fruits can have a few, more or less developed seeds. I remember, finding an exceptionally large seed and decided to grow it.  This was around November 2015. Now, this seedling tree surprised me with even two flowers. This photo is from today. The flowers soon will be open. The plant shows some nitrogen deficiency and was only recently fertilized.


Growing citrus from seeds can be very rewarding. Some grapefruit and Ortanique can flower at a quite young age. Are there similar observations with other citrus seedlings as well?



« Last Edit: June 06, 2017, 04:49:46 AM by Heinrich »

cory

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Re: Some citrus seedlings flower at an age of approximately 18 months.
« Reply #1 on: May 19, 2017, 10:30:31 AM »
That is very interesting Heinrich that you have gotten so many trees from seed to bloom so young.  I have been growing various kinds from seed for about the past  5 or 6 years but none have bloomed yet out of about 100. 
Cory

Millet

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Re: Some citrus seedlings flower at an age of approximately 18 months.
« Reply #2 on: May 19, 2017, 10:53:52 AM »
Heinrich, I have never heard of an Ortanique flowering at such a young age, yours is the first.  As for the grapefruit's early flowering, it does happen more frequently than with other citrus varieties.  Reports of an early flowering grapefruit comes up on a more or less regular basis, but I have never known the early flower to produce a fruit.  Eugen Schleipfer is certainly correct, when this happens the tree noes not produce more flowers for approximately 10 years, or until the tree reaches maturity.  One thing, it is certainly rare for a seedling grower to have two different citrus varieties produce juvenile flowers at the same time.   Thank you for your post and the nice pictures, Very interesting

Heinrich

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Re: Some citrus seedlings flower at an age of approximately 18 months.
« Reply #3 on: June 06, 2017, 04:48:52 AM »
Here is an update of the Sweetie grapefruit. The first flower wilted and the second flower opened. On both flowers, some of the five sepals, somehow are fused together. Otherwise, the flowers are well developed. I fertilized and applied iron chelate and the young leaves are nicely greening.



Millet

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Re: Some citrus seedlings flower at an age of approximately 18 months.
« Reply #4 on: June 06, 2017, 03:16:10 PM »
As far as the rarity of a seedling grapefruit flowering while still juvenile your even ahead of the game with a second flower.  Very interesting, be sure to post future developments.

Citradia

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Re: Some citrus seedlings flower at an age of approximately 18 months.
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2017, 08:13:14 PM »
Could a high concentration of phosphorus/triple phosphate  in soil cause such early blooming?

mikkel

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Re: Some citrus seedlings flower at an age of approximately 18 months.
« Reply #6 on: June 07, 2017, 10:38:30 AM »
@Heinrich Did you use the flowers for pollination of another tree? Would be interesting to find out if some of the offspring show the same early flowering.

Heinrich

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Re: Some citrus seedlings flower at an age of approximately 18 months.
« Reply #7 on: June 08, 2017, 06:29:09 AM »
Citradia, I didn’t give any special attention to the fertilizer and regularly fertilize either with Peters Excel 24+10+10+1 or with Kristalon 12+12+36, and never applied extra phosphorus.

Mikkel, my citrus plants are all fairly small. There wasn´t any plant suitable for pollination.

Cory, I grow around 80 citrus seedlings and have stopped now to germinate seeds, because of space reasons.

 

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