Maintaining An Orange Tree: Helpful Tips And Pointers

Having an orange tree in your orchard is a wonderful addition. There are many things that can be done with fresh oranges, from juice to extravagant recipes. Having the perfect fresh orange will depend on the care you give you tree.

General Information

Orange trees grow best in California, Arizona and Florida. They like continuous warm weather. Orange dwarf tree varieties can be planted outdoors or potted, so they can be transferred indoors in cooler climates. Before you buy your plant, make sure it's compatible with your growing area.

Tips and Pointers

  • Plant in sunny, well drained area.
  • Mulch around the base of the tree and when planting to conserve water and create a well draining soil.
  • After the tree is established, water deeply every 8-10 days.
  • Cut back on water during cool or rainy periods.
  • Fertilize every four to six weeks, between early spring and late summer.
  • Protect trees with mulch and plastic when the temperature dips below 28 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Trim the branches that sprout from the bottom of the tree.  They take needed nutrients from the fruit producing branches.

Harvesting Your Oranges

This is where it all pays off: the watering, the fertilizing and the four to six month wait that it's taken to see the ripe fruit on your orange tree. You'll watch your fruit go from flower to small green/yellow fruit, and then mature into yellow, orange or red fruit that is sweet and juicy. 

You'll know when they're ready by making sure that all of the green is gone, then cutting one open to taste it. With proper orange tree care you'll have fruit year after year.