How to Grow Apple & Citrus Trees in Central Texas

Overview

Texas is a large state with varying weather conditions. Central Texas contains hardiness zones 7b and 8a. These areas have mild weather with winter temperatures never reaching lower than 5 degrees. This cold snap provides the perfect weather for growing apples and citrus trees. In fact, there are many types of apples and citrus trees that thrive in these regions.

Apple Tree

Step 1

Obtain two apple trees. Apple trees are not self pollinating, so it is best to select two different varieties that both bloom around the same time. Apple tree varieties that thrive in Central Texas include Gala, Mollie's Delicious, Ein Sheimer and Starkcrimson Red Delicious.

Step 2

Prepare the soil. Apple trees thrive in sandy or loamy well-draining soil. Verify that there is at least four feet of well draining soil for the apple trees by digging a one foot deep hole and filling the hole entirely with water. If the water drains completely within 12 hours, then the soil has good enough drainage abilities. If the water does not drain within 12 hours, it is most likely hard pan or clay soil. Correct the soil by digging a four foot deep by three feet wide hole and mixing compost and course sand into the dirt.

Step 3

Plant the tree. Avoid planting apple trees in Central Texas after February 15 so that the tree has ample time to root itself before winter. Dig the hole for the tree twice as big around as the tree's root ball and one foot deeper. Fill the hole half-way with water and let it soak into the ground. This will soften the under soil for the roots. Place the root ball into the hole and fill in the hole with dirt. Leave a six inch tree well for deep watering. Water the tree again using its new tree well.

Step 4

Water the tree. Water the new tree regularly to ensure it obtains the necessary nutrients for winter.

Citrus Tree

Step 1

Obtain a citrus tree. Citrus trees are self-pollinating, so only one tree is required. Citrus tree varieties that thrive in Central Texas include Meyer Lemon, Persian Lime, Ruby Red Grapefruit and Satsuma Orange.

Step 2

Test the soil. Use a pH test kit to check the acidity of the desired planting location. Citrus trees require acidic soil for optimum nutrient absorption. An ideal pH is between 5.0 and 6.5. If the soil is any higher than this, till in some planting soil and coffee grounds to naturally lower the pH.

Step 3

Prepare the soil. Verify that there is at least four feet of well draining soil for the apple trees by digging a one foot deep hole and filling the hole entirely with water. If the water drains completely within 12 hours, then the soil has good enough drainage abilities. If the water does not drain within 12 hours, it is most likely hard pan or clay soil. Correct the soil by digging a four foot deep by three feet wide hole and mixing compost and course sand into the dirt.

Step 4

Plant the tree. Citrus trees should be planted in early spring once the threat of frost is completely gone. Dig the hole for the tree twice as big around as the tree's root ball and one foot deeper. Fill the hole half-way with water and let it soak into the ground. This will soften the under soil for the roots. Place the root ball into the hole and fill in the hole with dirt. Leave a six inch tree well for deep watering. Water the tree again using its new tree well.

Step 5

Water the tree daily for the first month while the tree is establishing itself. Then, back off the watering two twice a week. Water using a deep watering method where you fill up the trees well completely in the early morning, let it completely sink into the ground and repeat the process once more. This process encourages the tree's roots to grow deep into the soil.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Compost
  • Course sand
  • Soil pH test kit
  • Planting soil
  • Coffee grounds

References

  • Texas Cooperative Extension: Recommended Fruit, Nut and Berry Cultivators for North Central Texas
  • Texas Cooperative Extension: Fruit Gardening in Texas
  • Heirloom Gardens & Interior Decor: Citrus Tree Care

Who Can Help

  • USDA Plant Hardiness Zone Map: South-Midwest US
Keywords: planting citrus, planting apples, Texas citrus trees

About this Author

Steven White is a privately contracted software engineer, web developer, and tech support representative. He has 3 years of experience providing technical support for AT&T broadband customers. He is currently a Master's of Software Engineering student and enjoys sharing his knowledge and expertise with others.