A cross between a lemon and a mandarin orange, the Meyer lemon fruit is sweeter and less acidic than a typical lemon. The Meyer lemon tree can be grown in a container.
Popular across the country, the Meyer lemon tree (also known as a Valley lemon tree in Texas) is known for its fruit that is both sweet and lemony. The lemons from a Meyer lemon tree are also considerably less acidic than a typical lemon (which is great news to lemon lovers who suffer from acid reflux).
Choosing a Meyer Lemon Tree to Grow in a Container
Meyer lemon trees are strong, disease- and pest-resistant trees. When purchasing your Meyer lemon tree, just look out for trees that have obviously dead or broken branches. Otherwise, any Meyer lemon tree you choose will most likely grow strong and bear fruit for you.
If you want your tree to bear fruit quickly, choose a more mature tree. A tree that is three to five feet tall will most likely bear fruit the following growing season. Keep in mind, however, that taller trees are more expensive. If you have a limited budget, consider getting a smaller Meyer lemon tree and waiting a year or so for your tree to set fruit.
Choosing a Container for Your Meyer Lemon Tree
Most are commercially available in one gallon pots. A Meyer lemon tree can be grown in a container of almost any size. The size of the container will directly affect the size of the resulting tree. For example, a Meyer tree grown in a container that is five gallons will be larger than one that is grown in a three gallon container. If you’d like to upsize to a larger container for your Meyer lemon tree, you can repot it in the spring.
How to Plant a Meyer Lemon Tree in a Container
Choose a container that has a drainage hole. Citrus trees don’t like sitting in old water, and your tree will suffer if the water isn’t able to drain away. If your container does not have a drainage hole, use a drill to create drainage holes in the bottom of the container.
Partially fill your container with a good quality potting soil. A potting soil made for fruit trees is ideal. Plant the lemon tree in the center of the container, and fill the remaining space with more potting soil. Place the pot in a sunny location, and water regularly. The Meyer lemon tree doesn’t need a lot of water. Most do well with one watering every week or so.
Meyer lemon trees are cold hardy, but you can minimize any risk to your tree and fruits by covering it or moving it to a covered patio or garage if there is a threat of frost in your area.