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The Height of a Meyer Lemon Tree

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The Height of a Meyer Lemon Tree

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Overview

Meyer lemons were first introduced in the United States in 1908 from China, according to Texas A&M University. The trees are more cold tolerant than other lemon varieties and the fruits are less acidic. Meyer lemons are compact and almost thornless, although their mature height depends in part on their root stock, as well as cultural conditions and care.

Height

Meyer lemons grown on their own roots grow to 15 feet high, according to Oregon State University Extension. Most trees, especially those grown for home use, are grown on dwarf stock and grow to 5 or 6 feet high, making maintenance and harvest simple. Gardeners may prune them to control growth as well.

Fruit

Meyer lemons are technically not lemons, but they have a lemony taste. The fruits are thin-skinned, round and larger than lemons, resembling an orange. They have some seeds and are sweeter than real lemons. They are generally used for their juice and rind and may substitute lemon juice in any recipe. Use them for marmalades, sauces and lemonade.

Care

Meyer lemon trees are planted in pots north of USDA plant hardiness zone 8. They may grow outdoors during the summer, but should be brought inside when temperatures dip below 40 degrees F. They need light, sandy potting soil and a cool room. Meyer lemons require at least 8 to 12 hours of sunlight per day and perform best in a south-facing window. If growth slows or leaves yellow, they may need a grow light. They prefer slightly dry to barely moist soil.

Harvest

Meyer lemons grown outside bear fruit in the fall and winter, according to Texas A&M University. Container-grown Meyer lemons bear unpredictably and may grow fruit any time during the year. The fruit is harvested when it feels heavy for its size, but before the skin begins to wrinkle. The juice sweetens as the fruit hangs on the tree.

History

Meyer lemons were banned from citrus producing states for many years because they carried the citrus tristeza virus, which could potentially wipe out commercial citrus crops. The University of California introduced an improved, virus-free variety in the 1970s. Since then, the tree has become very popular with home growers in southern and northern states.

Keywords: grow Meyer lemon, Meyer lemon tree, Meyer lemon height

About this Author

Julie Christensen has been writing for five years. Her work has appeared in "The Friend" and "Western New York Parent" magazines. Her guide for teachers, "Helping Young Children Cope with Grief" will be published this spring. Christensen studied early childhood education at Ricks College and recently returned to school to complete a degree in communications/English.