Can I get a seemingly dormant Meyer lemon tree to start growing again?
A friend who was moving gave me his young lemon tree about three months ago. It was covered with wonderful, fragrant blossoms, though it had a pretty awkward shape, with gangly limbs in nearly a two-dimensional (flat) arrangement. The blossoms eventually fell off, but no fruit set...and no new leaves ever appeared. Some of the twigs have no leaves at all and don't seem eager to produce any. A couple of weeks ago I cut back some of the long branches and thinned out the twigs, hoping to jump-start some leaf production, but it's just sitting there. I fed it the proper amount of Citrus-Tone right after I got the tree, and again after I cut it back. I have watered it about twice weekly during this very hot summer. (I did put in a piece of wood to help separate two branches to either side of the center, and that seems to be working to help open up the shape.) What else would you suggest I do to stimulate growth? Thanks for your advice!
Certified GKH Gardening Expert
When caring for a sick or damaged tree, often, feeding it will exacerbate the issue. Sometimes this can bring the tree to the point of death. Before feeding, you should check the EC (or electrical conductivity) in the soil with a meter, or test the soil for nutrition content using a dropper test kit. This article will help: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/garden-how-to/soil-fertilizers/testing-soil.htm
Once you know what is lacking or what there is too much of, then you can begin to correct the issue. If you are uncertain about how to conduct a soil sample, you can have one sent to your local extension service for testing. They will be able to tell you, exactly, what is going on with your soil. This link will help you to find the closest one to you: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/extension-search
This article will help you to care for the tree: https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/fruits/lemons/growing-meyer-lemons.htm