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How to Grow Lemon Trees Indoors From a Lemon Seed

zitronen am baum image by Lucky Dragon from

If you have ever wanted to grow a lemon tree but don't think it's possible because you don't live in a tropical climate, think again. Lemon trees can be grown indoors from seed. A bright, sunny area inside that has a little extra space will provide the right environment to grow a lemon tree from the seed of a fresh lemon.

Place 3-inch-tall peat pots on a plastic seed tray. Fill them with sterile potting soil. Saturate the soil with water. Allow the water to drain from the soil and soak into the pot.

Cut open a lemon and remove the seeds. Rinse the seeds with lukewarm water. Rub off the slimy film that coats the seeds.

Bury the lemon seeds 1 inch deep below the soil. Cover the tray of peat pots with a sheet of plastic wrap. Set the tray on top of a warm surface, such as a refrigerator or water heater.

Move the pots to a bright, sunny window when the seedlings begin to germinate, giving them a minimum of five hours of bright light. Move the pots one at a time if some germinate before the others. Remove the seeds from under the plastic when they germinate.

Plant the seedlings in a larger pot when the roots begin coming through the peat pots. Fill a pot that is at least 8 inches high by 8 inches wide halfway with sterile potting soil. Set the lemon tree and peat pot into the soil.

Fill the rest of the pot in with more soil. Water until the soil is moist. Move to a bigger pot as the lemon tree grows.


Get all of the lemon seed planting items ready ahead of time. Lemon seeds will not produce if they dry out, so be prepared to plant it as soon as the seed is pulled from a fresh lemon. Plan to plant a few seeds at once, just in case one doesn't germinate. In areas where there is very little sun on winter days, hook up 40-watt shop lights above the lemon tree and expose the trees to the light for 12 hours per day. At 3 years old the tree should be in a 14-inch pot. As it grows it can graduate to a 20-inch pot if necessary.


If the lemon tree's pot does not have adequate drainage it can cause root rot and damage the tree.

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