How to Grow a Lemon Tree Indoors

You can successfully grow lemon trees indoors. image by Gavin Mills/


Fresh lemons all year long are possible with an indoor lemon tree. Fortunately, they are easy to plant and care for, especially if you have a south-facing window, which gives your plant maximum sun exposure. Lemon trees are part of the citrus tree family and are considered evergreens.

Step 1

Select a dwarf variety, such as the Meyer lemon tree. Dwarf lemon trees are suited for pots and life indoors. Purchase a tree that is at least two or three years old so you can reap the benefits of fresh lemons in the first or second year.

Step 2

Plant your lemon tree in a container that has holes for proper drainage. Use a peat moss-based all-purpose soil mix that is slightly acidic. Fill the container until it reaches the point that is two times the depth of the root ball until the rim. Place your tree in the container with its trunk straight and fill the rest of the pot--about an inch or two from the rim--with the soil. Water well.

Step 3

Keep your lemon tree evenly moist at all times. Mist your tree on occasion; once a day if possible. If your home is dry during the winter, place a tray of pebbles and water under your pot.

Step 4

Fertilize your lemon tree three times a year, usually in February or March, Jun, and August. Select a fertilizer that is specifically designed for citrus trees, which should contain high levels of nitrogen, but low levels of phosphorus and potassium (20-10-10). Follow manufacturer directions, as each brand has different potencies and release rates.

Step 5

Give your lemon tree a lot of light. Keep your tree near a window (south-facing, if possible) that receives lots of sunlight. If needed, use a 40 watt florescent light above your tree to help supplement less than eight hours of sunlight.

Things You'll Need

  • Dwarf lemon tree
  • Container
  • All-purpose soil
  • 20-10-10 fertilizer
  • Water
  • 40-watt light bulb


  • The Master Gardeners
  • How to Grow a Lemon Tree Indoors
Keywords: Meyer lemon tree, grow citrus tree indoors, grow evergreen indoors

About this Author

Melissa Lewis is a former elementary classroom teacher and media specialist. She has also written for various online publications. Lewis holds a Bachelor of Arts in psychology from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

Photo by: Gavin Mills/