Lemon Trees

Frozen Lemon Tree

sofie added on March 26, 2015 | Answered

I accidentally left my lemon tree outside one evening and it happened to get frozen. By then I had bought it 2 months ago and it had grown many new big leaves. When it froze, the new fresh leaves died (They got spaghetti-like and dried a few days later). I decided to cut off the branches that died. I'm spraying water on it quite often. Watering once a week (rainwater). I don't give it any supplements.

A few days later, the old leaves started to turn yellow, dry and crumple away. Mostly they fell off without the petiole. I have also bought a violet colored plant lamp. So what should I do? Will it sprout new leaves this summer or next summer or never? I'm quite sure it won't die but I really have no idea. The leaf down in the right corner of the picture is really strange.

Thanks in advance

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on March 26, 2015

Falling leaves on a citrus tree is normal after it experiences a severe freeze and it doesn't necessarily mean your tree is permanently harmed. Basically, you have to take a "wait and see" approach. When a lemon tree becomes frost damaged, it usually is recommended to wait for new growth to appear on the tree before pruning it. If you see no growth in the spring months, then your tree has likely perished and there is nothing you can do. Unless the soil becomes dry, it is also recommended to scale back on watering until the tree starts producing new growth. The same goes for fertilization - fertilize after new growth has appeared.

Here is an excellent article, from the University of Florida, that will explain the above in much more detail:

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