my newly planted orange trees aren't happy

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my newly planted orange trees aren't happy

Postby _newuser_ » Mon Sep 26, 2005 12:24 pm

Hi,
I have planted 2 orange trees (blood and naval) couple of months ago and they don't look too happy. I started noticing some yellowing of the leaves, then the little trees started to produce lots of little flowers (which have mostly dropped now). The blood orange is looking almost bare now, only few leaves are hanging... The leaves in the naval are curling and dropping as well... I think they are slowly dying :(
Can you help me diagnose the problem here? My soils is heavy, but I thought I prepared the soil well before planting, including some primitive draining arrangement (deeper holes + some crushed rock at the bottom). I first thought they may be lacking in iron, so I applied some chelated iron as well.
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Postby Ann » Tue Sep 27, 2005 11:28 am

Perhaps you should go to your local nursery with a leaf and get advice. They will also know your local soil as this affects what needs to be done. Maybe they are just settling in.?
I'm a bit like Bruce's spider; try, try, try again. Sonas, Ann
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Postby Kerrie » Tue Sep 27, 2005 5:49 pm

I agree to go to the nursery, as it might be a mineral deficiency of some sort, but the immediate thought I had is that if you have planted them into holes dug in heavy clay, the drainage might not be sufficient. My neighbour lost several fruit trees this way before we discussed building UP the garden beds where the trees were to go, rather than digging them in.

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Postby _newuser_ » Wed Sep 28, 2005 10:16 am

Yes I am suspecting drainage related problems as well. I have tried using the clay breaker liquid solution, but I don't know if that works. Has anyone got any experience with that? What about anti rot?
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Postby kitkat » Wed Sep 28, 2005 1:10 pm

My thoughts on your trees go to the roots first ....were the roots going in circles? Or nice healthy outward pointing roots? I brought a lemon tree in March and it had dropped all its leaves by April and has just sat there for the whole winter and first month of spring ....but it is still green so I am hoping that warmer weather will pick it up and let it establish .I am thinking that new roots don't like new soil and that they sort of freeze in place until they get a Spring spurt to adjust themselves to the new soil.Try Seasol as a helper to establish the roots ..it helps all plants get over transplant shock ...and that is what I think your trees and mine are suffering.Good Luck!
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Postby Marrion » Wed Sep 28, 2005 1:20 pm

Could you tell us where you are located? and is there any chance of a photo of the trees?
As Kerrie suggested, I would be inclined to transplant the trees into a raised up bed to help the drainage and also get your soil tested, the soil testers are quite inexpensive to buy - GE has one in their catalogue for around $20 that tests the moisture and the pH of your soil. If the soil tests out OK I would give them a fertilser specifically for Citrus and as Kitkat and Ann suggest, use some Seasol it encourages strong root growth in plants when they are settling in.
Let us know how they go, we will keep our fingers crossed for you (yn)
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Postby _newuser_ » Thu Sep 29, 2005 10:07 am

I am based in western suburbs of sydney.
I like the idea of posting photos, so I'll do just that.
I can't actually remember the condition of the roots, but the trees looked nice and vigorous. I also remember using that seaweed solution, but that much later after I planted them.
The naval tree, comparatively speaking, is doing better, but it appears to be stunned and isn't going anywhere.
If I wanted to implement this idea of raised beds, can the trees be safely pulled out and replanted?
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idea

Postby jack » Tue Oct 04, 2005 9:12 pm

If the trees have only been in since autumn, then yes pull them up and they will survive, then put them in raised bed, dont use stones or crushed rock, your better with gypsum and compost and a bloody big hole when planting anything in clay. so for your citrus get some railway sleepers and make a nice compost/gypsum/worm filled raised bed.
If your in clay, then its not a iron deficiency would doubt it a mineral one either, these are normally missing in leaching sandy soils.
would give it seasol and fish emulsion, if you have over feed it with citrus pellet fertillizers then you may have burnt the roots. but would think it more to the drainage problem, they dont like wet feet and maybe by filling the base of the hole with stones you have created a well for the surrounding clay to pool into and thus the potting mix of the citrus plants will be pulling this water up and drowning the plant.
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Postby _newuser_ » Wed Oct 05, 2005 1:41 pm

Thanks for your reply makes sense indeed. I have since pulled them up and put them in large pots and was planning on preparing raised beds.

How do I know if the roots were burnt? How does healthy rootball look like?
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roots

Postby jack » Wed Oct 05, 2005 2:19 pm

easy for root burn, when you lifted it and saw a lot of missing roots you would have known it to be burned. if it looked like when you put it in with say some new growth then just blame the water issue.
did some reading at home this morning and from what i read its is either to much or to little water.
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