Citrus Trees

Jul 10, 2020

Just because you live in the Midwest doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy a citrus tree inside your own home. Not only do citrus trees add an appealing look to your home, they will give you homegrown citrus fruit!

As the saying goes, if you don’t like the weather now, just wait a few minutes. This means that your citrus tree will fair well in a pot that you can bring in and out of the house depending on the weather. Plant in a deep pot using Colonial Gardens Custom growing mix with an organic citrus tone fertilizer. Proper planting of your citrus tree now will aid in the success going forward.

Citrus trees don’t just like sun, they LOVE it! So, make sure when thinking about getting a citrus tree you have a spot with an abundant amount of sun (both inside your home and out). Water! Since your citrus plant will be getting a lot of sun, it will need to stay hydrated.

Caring for your citrus tree throughout the Midwest seasons.

Fall: Bring your citrus tree inside in early to mid-October. During that time when you aren’t running the AC or furnace as to not “shock” your plant. Make it’s new home in that sunny spot next to a window.

Winter: Keep your citrus tree inside all winter long. Be sure it’s staying hydrated and getting an ample amount of sun. Watch that it’s not too close to the window, that the cold is not affecting growth.

Spring: Just as you did in the fall, take your citrus tree outside when you’re not running the furnace or AC. Temperatures should no longer fall below 40 degrees. Keep your citrus tree in a shaded area before moving it for summer.

Summer: In the summer, move your citrus tree into full sun! At this time, you can let the plant dry out then re-water. Make sure you’re keeping it hydrated through the hot, dry summer months.

Citrus Care


Citrus like to be in a bright sunny window for the winter months. Later in spring when weather warms up consistently 50+ degrees your citrus plant can go outside. First put it in shade, then gradually acclimate it to more sun over a 2-3 week time period until it is in full sun. It can stay outside till late fall, as long as temperatures are above 35 degrees.


In winter, citrus will grow very little if any, so don’t water it often! Wait till soil is dry nearly to bottom of pot, then water moderately, but not a thorough soaking! Little if any fertilizing during the winter months is required either. Slow foliage drop during the winter months is pretty normal, to the point the plant may be leafless come early spring. Don’t be alarmed, as long as the stems are green, all is good, it will leaf out again in spring/summer!


A good fertilizer is Citrus Tone, made by the Espoma company. It is an organic fertilizer specially made for fruit and nut type trees. Follow label directions, or ask for assistance if questions. Fertilize from Spring into late fall.

Enjoy the fruits of your labor with homegrown lemons, limes, and oranges! Great to start the morning with a fresh glass of orange juice. Slice up lemons and add to tea or juice for baking in cakes and breads. Use limes in a marinade or cut into wedges and squeeze on fajitas and street tacos. You’ll enjoy fresh citrus and have a gorgeous plant to look at all year round.

Colonial Gardens is proud to offer Midwest residents beautiful citrus trees you can enjoy in your home.