have a problem with my meyer lemon tree. It recently dropped all
its leaves. I suspect I may have over-fertilised it. The leaves
didn't change colour before dropping. Do you think I am correct
in my diagnosis, and can I expect it to recover?
more than likely you have been too kind little and often
is the best way to feed plants. Leaves dropping suddenly are a sign
of stress the plant's mechanism of coping.
If the leaf drop is sudden
and there have been no other symptoms, like yellowing or wilting,
the best thing to do is put the hose or sprinkler around the tree
for at least half an hour (hopefully you do not have water restrictions).
Watering will leach out the excess fertiliser and dilute it.
The good news is that
the tree will more than likely recover as long as you were not too
heavy handed with the fertiliser.
The other possibility
is lack of water. Deep watering twice a week is preferable to light
sprinklings. Mulching around the plant will keep the roots cool
and moist through the summer months and help retain soil moisture.
by Dr Dan Blanchon from Unitec's Diploma in Sustainable Horticulture and Bachelor
of Resource Management.
with permission from NZOOM Home and Garden content,
from the previous
The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the RNZIH