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Sunday, December 7, 2014

Why Does My Orange Tree Have No Fruit?

Q. I have a dwarf orange tree planted a little over a year ago. There have been no oranges on the tree. I have fertilized and I think I've been watering it correctly. The tree appears to be healthy just no fruit. Any suggestions?

A. Dwarf orange is not much help to me. The subject of oranges is huge. I need to know what type of orange it is, whether it has produced flowers or not and no fruit, or no flowers and no fruit. Varieties vary from early ripening - about 8 months from bloom - to late - up to 16 months from bloom.
There are three main groups: The normal fruited, without navels and with light orange colored flesh; the navel oranges, with a distinct navel development at the end; and blood oranges, with red flesh and juice.

There are about 73 varieties but US production focuses on Valencia, Washington Navel, Hamlin, Parson Brown, Pineapple and Temple. For home gardening there are many more than these six available from nurseries.

Remember, in southern Nevada growing citrus is marginal. Our winters or just too cold. That is the major limiting factor. The usual reason for not producing fruit are winter freezes.

Citrus should be planted in protected areas out of winter wind. They should be protected in the wintertime from cold. There is an excellent publication from Arizona on protecting citrus from cold weather.

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