Author Topic: First time citrus (Beginner)  (Read 501 times)

brecht986

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First time citrus (Beginner)
« on: November 17, 2022, 11:27:41 AM »
Hello Everyone,

I received 3 small citrus trees (30 cm) and they need to be potted. I am wondering what soil I should use. I read on the internet that I should use 50 % sand + 50 manure % . I don't have manure, could I use 50 % sand and 50 % compost? And is it 50/50 based on weight or volume? I also read that the pH should be around 6. How can I manage to drop the pH to this level ? And lastly, should the citrus trees be in a pot with an open bottom of the pot + scale or is a pot with closed bottom just fine?

Kind regards,
Brecht

brian

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #1 on: November 17, 2022, 12:20:11 PM »
A very common mix that is easy to obtain is a "5-1-1 mix" which is five parts mulch, one part sphagnum peat moss, one part perlite.  The peat moss has the effect of lowering ph somewhat.   Standard bagged "potting soil" is not recommended, it doesn't drain well.  If you cannot find peat moss or perlite, mix 5 parts mulch with 1 part bagged potting soil

All ratios are based on volume, no matter what mix you use.

DEFINITELY have holes in the pot, excess water must have a place to drain or it will become stagnant and cause root rot.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2022, 12:21:59 PM by brian »

poncirsguy

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #2 on: November 17, 2022, 12:42:53 PM »
I use 5 parts pine bark much and 1 part used potting mix.
 pot with lots of small holes.


pagnr

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #3 on: November 17, 2022, 03:37:01 PM »
I would not use 50% manure, it has poor structure ( you can heavily compress it without resistance ) and will only break down even more.
Also it probably has excess nutrients like Nitrogen.
Some people might used well aged horse stable manure, but there are better things to use.

The measurement is by volume. Sand will be heavier than mulch or pine bark or perlite.
Measuring by weight will give a wrong ratio. A kg of sand is probably 1 litre, a kg of Perlite cold be 5 to 10 litres or more. 10 litres of coco coir peat might only be 2 or 3 kg
To make 30 litres of pot mix,  I use three 10 litre buckets to measure the components prior to mixing by hand on a flat surface. ( on a clean plastic sheet ).

I use 70% coarse sand and 30 % coir coco peat mixes for smaller trees and composted pine bark based mixes for larger tree.
It is hard to recommend mixes as I am in a very hot summer /mild winter area in Australia, so that may not suit your conditions and management.

What type of mix are the trees as you received them.

Millet

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #4 on: November 17, 2022, 04:46:14 PM »
Many growers use the 5-1-1 Mix (5 parts 1/4" pine bark, 1 part peat moss and 1 part perlite. Also many growers use a 50:50 mix of Turface MVP and  Miracle Grow Garden Soil. Both are good draining mediums.  For 1/4" pine bark you can  use  Reptibark reptile bedding found on line or at  most larger Pet Supply Stores.
« Last Edit: November 17, 2022, 05:00:26 PM by Millet »

brecht986

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #5 on: November 18, 2022, 08:43:19 AM »
Thank you everyone! I think I'll go for 5-1-1 (pine bark - peat moss - sand)  :)

pagnr

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #6 on: November 18, 2022, 03:23:46 PM »
Peats are often in compressed bales. Don't forget to check instructions expand it if required. Otherwise the % ratio will be out too.

1rainman

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #7 on: November 19, 2022, 07:44:57 PM »
A normal potting mix works well. Miracle grow potting soil for instance. It's mostly peat and perlite but pre mixed. This would work well but I'd sprinkle a little sand in it if available. Like 5% sand or something. It doesn't need any special soil though prefers a little more drainage than average.

W.

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #8 on: November 22, 2022, 11:55:48 PM »
A normal potting mix works well. Miracle grow potting soil for instance. It's mostly peat and perlite but pre mixed. This would work well but I'd sprinkle a little sand in it if available. Like 5% sand or something. It doesn't need any special soil though prefers a little more drainage than average.

Miracle Gro used to be a very good potting mix. But, it has really declined in quality since 2020. Given the finicky nature of citrus roots, I would not advise planting citrus in Miracle Gro. The ones I've potted in it since 2020 have not grown and thrived like ones I potted pre-2020.

Millet

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #9 on: November 23, 2022, 12:27:44 PM »
I agree with W,. straight Miracle Grow is NOT a good growing medium for container citrus trees. 

Peep

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #10 on: November 23, 2022, 02:47:02 PM »
I don't think Miracle Gro is available here in Belgium anyway (where OP also lives).

For the soil part of my mixing I use this product: https://www.brico.be/nl/tuin-buitenleven/planten-potten/potgrond/compo-bio-potgrond-ca-50-lichter-40l/5507831

I added pine bark, but @Ilya11 also recommends coco husk (the chunks, not the very fine fiber stuff), which for Belgium I think is most easily available here: https://avevewinkels.be/Producten/Detail/tuin/potgrond-en-bodembedekkers/bodembedekkers/cocover/bb5f6
But I have not bought and used it yet (planning to).

And I also used lava gravel, but is Ilya also pointed out, it can possibly be a bit sharp on roots, so I will try perlite next time. Personally I'm most interested in the 2-6mm size, which I found here online but also haven't bought yet: https://agrifield.nl/products/perliet-100l-zak-premium-perligran

And I would add a small amount of sand.

Citradia

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Re: First time citrus (Beginner)
« Reply #11 on: November 23, 2022, 07:52:22 PM »
I use miracle grow potting mix to start seeds and for initial potting of seedlings. Once I pot up to one gallon pot or at least by two gallon size, I have found that my citrus grow better in 50:50 mix ( miracle grow garden soil and Turface), since after a year the miracle grow potting soil turns into dense mud that sometimes lets water pond on top of the soil instead of draining through. I use the potting soil for native trees and non citrus stuff like red buds, rowan, crabapple, etc.

 

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