How to Plant Seeds From Lemon Trees


Lemon can add a bit of zing to your beverages, and its fruit, juice and zest is a popular ingredient in many recipes. Consider growing lemon trees if you want an abundance of the fresh and tangy fruit on hand. Lemon trees can be grown outdoors in hardiness zones 9 to 11. If you do not live in these growing zones, you can grow lemon trees in containers. No matter your growing zone, the process of planting seeds from lemon trees is the same.

Step 1

Obtain lemons by picking them directly from trees or by purchasing them from a store.

Step 2

Cut the lemons open and remove the seeds.

Step 3

Rinse the seeds in water.

Step 4

Fill foam cups with 3 to 4 inches of potting soil. You will need one cup for each seed.

Step 5

Use your finger and make a ½-inch deep hole in the center of the soil. Place a seed into each hole and cover it with soil.

Step 6

Add water to the cups. You want to moisten the soil, not soak it. Plan to water the soil every two to three days, or as needed, to keep the soil damp.

Step 7

Cover the cups with plastic wrap.

Step 8

Place your cups in a warm location, such as on top of a refrigerator or freezer. Avoid drafty areas.

Step 9

Watch for the lemon seeds to sprout and break through the soil. When they sprout, move the cups to a sunny location, such as a windowsill.

Step 10

Transplant the sprouts into larger growing containers as they mature and turn into 3- to 4-inch seedlings. Continue to keep the soil damp by adding water as needed.

Step 11

Continue to transplant your trees into bigger growing containers as the seedlings grow. When transplanting, choose containers twice the size of the current containers. If you live in growing zones 9 to 11, you can transplant your trees directly into the ground.

Tips and Warnings

  • Lemon trees can reach heights of 20 feet. If you plan to grow your lemon trees indoor, plan accordingly.

Things You'll Need

  • Fresh lemons
  • Knife
  • Foam cups
  • Potting soil
  • Plastic wrap
  • Planting pots of various sizes


  • New Mexico State University: Lemon Tree from Seeds
  • Plantea: How to Grow a Lemon Tree Indoors

Who Can Help

  • Botanical Journeys Plant Guide: Lemon Tree Care
Keywords: plant lemon seeds, grow lemon trees, lemon tree seeds

About this Author

Joyce Maxwell is a writer and editor for print and online markets. She pursued a Bachelor of Arts in English with a psychology minor at a southern university. Her work has appeared in numerous publications, as well as being picked up by health and education groups. Maxwell is a writer and title flagger for Demand Studios.