Orange Trees
Q.

Houseplant

Zone Pittsburgh PA | Kingsly58 added on December 30, 2016 | Answered

I have a 35 or 40 year old indoor "orange tree," maybe about 4.5 foot tall with a spread of about 3.5 feet. It is in a large pot in our breakfast room. After all these years, the plant has become totally rootbound and is starting to depart this world. I do not want to place it in a much larger pot to accommodate its root system. I do not have enough space in the room. Could I lift the plant out of the pot, cut and discard a large portion of root from all sides, then replace that void with potting soil and replace the new ball in the original pot? Or do you have any other suggestions?

    A.
    A.Answers to this queston: Add Answer
    Alisma
    Certified GKH Gardening Expert
    Answered on January 2, 2017

    Yes, you can root prune your potted citrus tree as you've suggested. It is best to also prune the aboveground parts by a similar amount, so that the smaller root system will be able to support them. Please see these articles for advice:

    https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/houseplants/hpgen/prune-roots.htm
    https://aggie-horticulture.tamu.edu/patiocitrus/containers.html
    https://www.gardeningknowhow.com/edible/fruits/oranges/pruning-orange-trees.htm

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