How to Root Citrus Cuttings


Some types of citrus are easier than others to root from cuttings. The Meyer lemon, for instance, is easily rooted from cuttings and, according to horticulturists with Purdue University, they will bear fruit two to three years sooner than some grafted trees. It's important that the pruning shears be very sharp so that you don't cause injury to the parent tree. Take the cutting in the summer.

Step 1

Take a cutting, the thickness of a pencil, from the citrus tree. It should be from the current season's growth and 6 to 8 inches in length. ‭

Step 2

Remove all leaves from the lower two-thirds of the cutting, leaving just a few at the top. ‭

Step 3

Scrape the top layer of bark from the bottom inch of the cutting. A small, sharp knife works well for this. ‭

Step 4

Pour the sand into the planting pot to within 1/2 inch of the rim. Water it until the water drains from the bottom of the pot. Allow the pot to drain completely. ‭

Step 5

Dip the cut end of the cutting into the rooting hormone, and then stick it into the sand. It should be buried to within 1 to 2 inches below the leaves. Cover the pot with the plastic bag, and secure the bag. ‭

Step 6

Place the pot on the heat mat, set to 90 degrees F, and place it in a well-lit area but out of direct sun. The cutting should root in four to eight weeks.

Things You'll Need

  • Sharp pruning shears
  • ‭Small, sharp knife
  • ‭Sand
  • ‭1-gallon planting pot
  • ‭Rooting hormone with fungicide
  • ‭Plastic bag
  • ‭Heat mat


  • UBC Botanical Garden: Rooting Citrus From Cuttings
  • Purdue University: Lemon
  • Florida State Horticultural Society: The Propagation of Citrus Rootstocks By Stem Cuttings
Keywords: root citrus cuttings, take citrus cuttings, propagate citrus

About this Author

Victoria Hunter, a former broadcaster and real estate agent, has provided audio and written services to both small businesses and large corporations, worldwide. Hunter is a freelance writer specializing in the real estate industry. She devotes her spare time to her other passions: gardening and cooking. Hunter holds a Bachelor of Arts in English/creative writing.