How to Care for a Satsuma Tree


The satsuma mandarin (Citrus reticulata) was introduced to the U.S. by Japan in 1878 and quickly became a favorite tree because of its abundant, sweet fruit production and its outstanding cold tolerance, according to Texas A & M University. The tree can easily tolerate dips in temperature to 26 degrees F. The small size of the tree offers ease of growth if a gardener wishes to grow it in a container. You can bring the tree inside during cold weather and place it back outside when the cold snap passes. The tree usually never tops 6 feet in height.

Step 1

Transplant the satsuma orange into a 20-gallon container after purchasing. Plant the tree in well-draining soil outside in tropical regions. Plant in a soil mixture that contains at least 75 percent sphagnum peat moss. If planting outside, add an abundant amount of sphagnum peat moss until the soil feels crumbly and nutrient rich. Do not place mulch around the tree. Mulching will often cause root rot on satsuma trees.

Step 2

Choose a location that offers full sunlight. The satsuma requires at least eight hours of sunlight per day to flourish and for fruit production.

Step 3

Apply a 21-0-0 fetilizer the first year. Apply 1 cup of the fertilizer three times during the first year. Water the fertilizer into the soil thoroughly. Increase the fertilizer to 2 cups the first year and 3 cups the second year. Apply three times a year.

Step 4

Water the satsuma tree only when it dries out. Water once every seven days thoroughly.

Step 5

Harvest the fruit between November and December. Promptly remove fresh fruit.

Things You'll Need

  • 20-gallon container
  • Sphagnum peat moss
  • 21-0-0 fertilizer


  • Texas A & M: Satsuma
  • Texas A & M: Home Fruit Production Mandarins
  • Urban Harvest: Tangerines, Mandarins, and Satsumas

Who Can Help

  • University of California: History of Satsuma
Keywords: satsuma mandarin tree, satsuma mandarin care, satsuma growth

About this Author

Kimberly Sharpe is a freelance writer with a diverse background. She has worked as a Web writer for the past four years. She writes extensively for Associated Content where she is both a featured home improvement contributor (with special emphasis on gardening) and a parenting contributor. She also writes for Helium. She has worked professionally in the animal care and gardening fields.