How to Plant Tangerine Trees in Tucson


Ah, the lucky gardener that grows tangerines, or any citrus fruit in Tucson. Unlike your gardening cousins in other parts of the country, you get two yummy harvests per year. When the weather warms in February and March, and then again in the fall, your Tucson tangerine tree will burst forth with fruit. In Tucson, the best time to plant a tangerine tree is in the spring.

Step 1

Choose an area to plant your tangerine tree. It should receive a full day of sun and, according to landscape designers at Harlow Gardens in Tucson, a southern exposure is ideal.

Step 2

Measure the width of the tangerine tree's root ball. Dig the planting hole 2 inches deeper than that measurement, and 10 inches wider.

Step 3

Place the tree into the hole. If the roots are wrapped in burlap, the burlap must remain on the bottom of the ball. As well, if there is any type of wrap, either cardboard or burlap, around the trunk of the tree, leave that intact as well. This will help protect the young tree from the hot Tucson sun.

Step 4

Add water, slowly, as you backfill the hole. This will help to settle the tree and remove any air pockets that may form while planting. Lightly tamp the soil around the base of the tree.

Step 5

Form a water ring around the tree out of soil. It should be 5-6 inches in height and 6-8 inches thick. Build this ring a bit wider than the width of the hole in which you planted the tree. This will act as a dam, keeping the water confined to the area around the tree's base.

Step 6

Fill the water well around the tangerine tree with water every three days. This should be done for the first two weeks the tree has been in the ground. Subsequent waterings should be done twice a day, morning and evening, on one day every week during the summer. Completely fill the dam you formed with water. In the winter, repeat this process, but perform it every 3-4 weeks. If it has rained, you can skip the water for that period.

Step 7

Fertilize your tangerine tree after it has been in the ground for one year. Apply 16-8-4 fertilizer in March, June and September.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Water


  • Texas A&M University: Growing Your Own Citrus
  • Harlow Gardens: Frequently Asked Questions
  • Phoenix Tropicals: Growing Citrus in Pheonix, Arizona
Keywords: plant a tangerine tree in Tucson, grow tangerines in Tucson, grow citrus fruit in Arizona

About this Author

Victoria Hunter, a former broadcaster and real estate agent, has provided audio and written services to both small businesses and large corporations. Hunter is a freelance writer specializing in the real estate industry. She devotes her spare time to her other passions: gardening and cooking. Hunter holds a Bachelor of Arts in English/creative writing.