Lime. Lime #2. Tangerine. Tangerine #2.

First two are a lime, second two are a tangerine.

Both of these have done well in previous years. The lime is especially bad it does not seem able to add new leaves, and the existing leaves have yellowed. It's been like this for ~6 months. Seems like it's trying to blossom.

This is Bay Area, CA.

Edit 1: Per reader suggestion, I'm going to try an OTC solution that includes iron.

Edit 2: Some reading online indicates this may be Citrus Greening Disease.

HLB is distinguished by the common symptoms of yellowing of the veins and adjacent tissues; followed by splotchy mottling of the entire leaf, premature defoliation, dieback of twigs, decay of feeder rootlets and lateral roots, and decline in vigor, ultimately followed by the death of the entire plant.


Common symptoms can often be mistaken for nutrient deficiencies;


UPDATE: I tried spraying with an iron / nutrient solution and I don't see any obvious change after 2 weeks. I tested the soil pH and it came out 6.5-7.0, which from what I read is maybe a little high (?). There is some new growth on the lime tree but too early to see whether it's going to be retarded like the rest of the tree.

Some evidence that this is not Citrus Greening Disease is that the fruit of the tangerine is reasonably tasty / not bitter.

  • 1
    I'm curious whether it is citrus greening disease in your case. Hope it's just a nutrient deficiency! Commented Jan 10, 2022 at 17:13
  • 1
    I'll try to update after some nutrient application. I hope not either. Commented Jan 12, 2022 at 4:57

1 Answer 1


A friend of mine had a similar problem with her citrus trees in Portugal and it turned out it was a lack of iron in the soil. She had a gardening company come over and that was their diagnosis.

A quick read online points to yellow leaves being indeed due to lack of iron.

She left a bucket full of nails and random pieces of iron from neighboring construction works in water for a few days, and the truth is that after applying this water to the soil now the orange trees are recovering.

I suggest you experiment on one or two trees and see if it works at all.

Good luck!

  • 1
    Thanks. Seems like a common problem. Commented Jan 9, 2022 at 19:48

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