enter image description hereenter image description hereI have two potted Meyer lemon trees, both about 20 years old, in 14" pots. I live in Rhode Island, so the trees are outside from May to October, then in a west facing, roughly 70 degree kitchen, with large windows and skylights, for the winter. I have had various issues over the years, mostly from scale insect or over-fertilization, but have always been able to bring them back. Re potted (and root pruned) both trees last fall, using a mixture of orchid medium (lots of bark), perlite and potting soil. They are on pot feet in plastic saucers. I water once or twice a week until water runs out of the bottom. One tree is doing fairly well, but the second which has always had a weaker root system—looks terrible. Leaves drooping and yellowing, some flower buds but I know that's not necessarily a good sign.It's still green under the bark when I scrape the bottom of the trunk, however. Was fertilizing weekly all summer, but have not fertilized either tree since they came in for the winter. There's no evidence of scale. What am I doing wrong? Can anyone help? These trees are part of the family!

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    Pictures please!
    – kevinskio
    Jan 28, 2018 at 17:41
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    Welcome Susanna! We're sorry you're having problems with your trees and would like to help. In order to do that, we need pictures, as @kevinsky told you. We also might need to learn more information. Without some more communication with you, we might close the question. That's described on this page of our help center. If that happens, they're will still be time for you to edit it. Let us know if you're still around, and we can work together to try and help you! Feb 3, 2018 at 20:59
  • I'm so sorry it has taken me so long to post pictures—have been out of town for the last few weeks. But the lemon tree has not improved in my absence—any advice would be really appreciated..
    – Susanna
    Feb 10, 2018 at 2:04
  • How wet is the potting mix? Feb 10, 2018 at 12:19
  • The potting mix is quite dry—maybe too dry? I only water until it starts to run out of the bottom of the pot, but that happens almost instantly. So it gets about a quart of warwe twice a week, in a 14”diameter clay pot.
    – Susanna
    Feb 11, 2018 at 16:33

1 Answer 1


You have repotted an ailing plant that appears to have a nutrient deficiency so presumably it's either a root issue or other disease problem. It's severely lacking in leaves and I guess it's flowering in an attempt to survive.

I'd suggest reporting it again in a larger pot in a commercial citrus potting mix, examining the roots again, and feeding it with a myocrhyzzal fungal fertiliser with some additional nitrogen in an attempt to rejuvenate it.

  • Thank you! I repotted this week (there still seemed to be quite a bit of good root structure), and will look for a mychoryzzal fertiliser—online if necessary. Thanks again. Susanna
    – Susanna
    Feb 16, 2018 at 16:03

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