Citrus

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Citrus trace element deficiencies – zinc and manganese

Citrus can be prone to several micronutrient deficiencies, including manganese and zinc. Symptoms of these two deficiencies can be quite similar.
Manganese (Mn) – manganese plays a role in processes like photosynthesis. A manganese deficiency shows up as paler leaves with darker veins, usually in younger leaves. Leaves stay their full size, compared to reduced leaf size in zinc deficiency.

Zinc (Zn) – a main symptom of zinc deficiency is smaller leaves, often clustered together, on shorter stems. Leaves can also be mottled, with pale areas appearing in between the veins. Zinc plays an important role in plant growth hormones and stem elongation which is why zinc deficient plants can be stunted.

Yates® Citrus Cure Zinc and Manganese Chelate is a combination fast acting liquid that helps corrects both zinc and manganese deficiency. Applied as a foliar spray it delivers micronutrients directly to the deficient leaves for faster results.

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Large Lisbons
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Lisbon lemons (Citrus limon ‘Lisbon’) are thought to have originated in Portugal and are large cold and heat hardy trees that produce heavy winter and spring crops. The thin skinned, juicy fruit are highly acidic and Lisbon is one of the most common varieties grown in Australia.

Being a sizeable tree (growing up to 8 m tall and 4 m wide) Lisbon is a great citrus for a large backyard. For smaller gardens, look out for dwarf grafted Lisbons which reach a more manageable 3 m and can be grown in a medium to large pot on a sunny balcony or deck.

When planting a new Lisbon lemon out in the garden, choose a spot with well-drained soil that receives at least 6 hours of sunshine a day and enrich the soil in the planting hole first with some Yates® Dynamic Lifter® Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser. It promotes increased soil organic matter content and water holding capacity, in addition to providing the new tree with gentle slow release organic nutrients as it establishes. For potted citrus, choose a pot with good drainage holes (a Yates Tuscan 40 – 50 cm pot is ideal) and fill with a good quality potting mix like Yates Premium Potting Mix. Keep new citrus trees well-watered as they settle into their new home.

For established citrus, it’s important to keep deep watering and feeding during late summer, as autumn and winter fruit are continuing to develop. Moisture and nutrient stress can adversely affect the quantity and quality of the harvest so it’s well worth devoting extra care to your citrus at this time of year. Feeding is as simple as diluting 2 capfuls of Yates Thrive® Citrus Liquid Plant Food into a 9 L watering can and applying over the root zone each week.

Sweet sugary sap that’s flowing through citrus plants is a magnet for sap sucking pests like scale. Scale insects can be brown, white, pink or grey and appear as small raised bumps along leaves and stems. Sometimes the scale are hard to spotthemselves, however if you see sooty mould developing on the leaves (a black ash like film) or ants moving up and down the stems then they’re indicators of a sap sucking insect pest like scale.

Regular sprays of Yates® Nature’s Way® Citrus & Ornamental Spray, on both the upper and lower leaf surfaces, will help keep scale under control. It’s based on natural pyrethrin and vegetable oil and is certified for use in organic gardening, so is ideal for gardeners wanting to use organic methods of insect pest control.


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