How to Root Lemon Trees


Lemon trees can grow well in containers indoors or in yards outdoors, as long as they have acidic soil, good drainage and full sunlight. Lemon trees grown from cuttings grow faster and produce fruit earlier than seed-grown trees. Rooting lemon trees is the most effective and simplest way to propagate them.

Step 1

Put on gardening gloves. Use pruning shears at a 45-degree angle to cut off two smaller branches from a healthy lemon tree. Cut the branches at the node closest to the trunk.

Step 2

Trim off all flowers and remove all leaves, except the top few at the tip of the branch.

Step 3

Pour a quarter-cup of liquid rooting hormone in a coffee mug. Place the cut end of the branch in the coffee mug and allow the branch to soak for one to two minutes.

Step 4

Place small rocks in the bottom of the potting container to provide drainage for your lemon tree roots.

Step 5

Fill the potting container half-full with organic potting soil. Use your thumb to make two indentations in the soil.

Step 6

Remove the branches from the rooting hormone and stick them into the potting soil. Cover the branches with potting soil until two nodes are completely covered. Press the soil firmly with your fingertips to secure the branches.

Step 7

Pour water into the potting container until the soil is moist but not saturated. Place the new lemon tree cuttings container in a sunny location. Mist soil at the base of the branches daily.

Tips and Warnings

  • Lemon cuttings have a difficult time growing in winter months. Use a grow light a minimum of six hours daily during the late fall and winter months.

Things You'll Need

  • Gardening gloves
  • Pruning shears
  • Healthy lemon tree with new growth
  • Liquid rooting hormone
  • Glass coffee mug
  • 6-inch container
  • Organic potting soil
  • Small rocks
  • Water


  • Growing Lemons
  • Growing Dwarf Citrus Trees in the Home
  • Perdue Horticulture Department: Lemons

Who Can Help

  • Caring for Indoor Citrus Trees
Keywords: growing lemons, lemon trees, tree cuttings

About this Author

Daniel Smith graduated from technical school in 1993 and has been writing since 2005. His has written numerous articles for the instructional website called eHow in areas including gardening, home improvement, celebrating special events and health-related topics.