How to Care for a Calamondin

Overview

The scientific name for calamondin is Citrus mitis. This citrus tree grows to 6½ to 25 feet tall with erect, slender thorny branches. It grows 1½- to 3-inch-long, aromatic evergreen eaves that are glossy. Calamondin develops sweet, fragrant flowers with white petals. Calamondin produce fruit with an orange-red glossy skin. This fruit looks like miniature oranges that are edible as well as ornamental. Calamondin is winter hardy to a temperature of 20 degrees F. Calamondin can be grown in a container, but it is better placed in the ground outside.

Step 1

Place the calamondin in an area of bright light for the best growth and fruit production. Plant in an area of full sunlight if planting outside. If indoors, a calamondin can tolerate medium light during the winter.

Step 2

Keep the temperature between 70 and 90 degrees F during the summer if growing indoors. Calamondin does not grow well at temperatures below 55 degrees F.

Step 3

Feed calamondin often throughout the year. Feed your calamondin at half strength of water-soluble fertilizer every five weeks during the winter. Add slow-release fertilizer to the soil around the calamondin in early spring. Feed at full strength of water-soluble fertilizer every month during the season of active growth.

Step 4

Water a calamondin as needed since excess or lack of water will kill this tree. Let the surface dry out to the depth of 1 inch before watering.

Step 5

Wipe off the leaves with a damp sponge. Dusty leaves can become infected with mites and scales.

Step 6

Clip the stems of the fruits as they become ripe and fully colored. A calamondin will continue to produce fruit throughout the year. The fruit is thin skinned and does not last very long after harvesting.

Tips and Warnings

  • Do not plant a calamondin over sewer lines or pipes. Calamondin grows an extremely deep taproot and can clog up underground plumbing systems. Fruitflies are attracted to calamondin and use it as a host plant. This tree is prone to the same viruses that attack normal citrus trees. These viruses include crinkly leaf, exocortis, psorosis, xyloporosis and tristeza. Calamondin seems to have an immunity to canker and scab.

Things You'll Need

  • Calamondin tree
  • Water-soluble fertilizer
  • Slow-release fertilizer
  • Water
  • Sponge

References

  • Purdue University Center for New Crops & Plant Products: Calamondin
  • AgriLIFE Texas A&M Extension: Calamondin--The Most Versatile Citrus
Keywords: calamondin, Citrus mitis, citrus tree

About this Author

Karen Carter spent three years as a technology specialist in the public school system and her writing has appeared in the "Willapa Harbor Herald" and the "Rogue College Byline." She has an Associate of Arts from Rogue Community College with a certificate in computer information systems.