Pink Variegated Lemon Tree

Growing Zones in Ground: 8 - 11 / in Pots: 4 - 11

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Description

Pink Variegated lemon trees make fine ornamental trees because of their glossy, evergreen, green and cream-colored foliage and fragrant white blooms that are in season in spring or fall. They bear low-seeded pink-fleshed lemon fruits that have green-stripped rind while still immature.

The Pink Variegated Lemon Tree, oftentimes called variegated Eureka lemon tree or pink-fleshed Eureka lemon, is a cultivar of lemon botanically named Citrus limon “Eureka Variegated Pink”. It was first discovered in 1931 as a sport that grew on a regular Eureka Lemon tree at a home garden in Burbank, California.

This citrus tree is drought tolerant and suitable for outdoor planting in USDA plant hardiness zones 8 to 11. When planted in the ground it can grow 10 to 15 feet tall and 6 to 8 feet wide. If you live in an area where winter temperatures won’t allow you to grow the Eureka pink lemon tree in the ground, you can always get a dwarf Pink Variegated Lemon Tree and grow it in a container indoors. Position the tree near a sunny, south-facing window to supplement it with its much needed sunlight during winter. When all danger of frost has passed you can move the potted lemon tree to your deck or patio where it can stay until next winter.

Pink Variegated lemon trees make fine ornamental trees because of their glossy, evergreen, green and cream-colored foliage and fragrant white blooms that are in season in spring or fall. They bear low-seeded pink-fleshed lemon fruits that have green-stripped rind while still immature. As the fruits ripen, they lose their stripes and the rinds turn yellow with pink oil glands.

What makes this tree even more likable is its adaptability to different soil types and growing conditions. It is also resistant to pests or diseases.

Citrus Tree Care

The Pink Variegated Eureka Lemon Tree is a semi-dwarf, moderately vigorous citrus tree, and like many dwarf lemon and dwarf lime trees, it can fit in smaller areas.

  • Seasonal Information – Being classified a tropical plant, Pink Variegated lemon citrus trees are ideal grown outdoors in USDA plant hardiness zones 8 to 11 as they need full sunshine 6 to 8 hours a day to ensure a healthy growth cycle. Furthermore, if you plant this tree outdoors, it is highly recommended that you do your planting from spring to fall since lemon lime trees are sensitive to colder temperatures.
  • Choosing a Location – Citrus trees like lemon and dwarf lime trees can tolerate some shade but flourish in full sun. If you are planting more than one lemon tree make sure they are spaced 6 to 10 feet apart. Also, select a location with high humidity. If needed, provide humidity by misting the leaves daily or placing a tray filled with water and rocks underneath the plant to give it humidity as the water evaporates.
  • In Ground Planting Directions – For zones 8 to 11 where winter is mild and temperatures stay consistently warm, replant your newly bought citrus trees for sale in an area with full sun, high humidity and well-draining soil.
  1. Make a hole as deep and twice as wide as the root system of your citrus tree.
  2. Gently remove the tree from the container it arrived in and place in the hole. Backfill with sandy, acidic, well-draining soil. If you have clay soil amend with stone, sand, perlite or fine potting soil.
  3. Lightly tamp the soil down while backfilling the hole to prevent pockets from forming.
  4. Right after replanting, give your citrus tree a deep watering for about 5 minutes.
  • Potted Planting Directions – if winter in your area is harsh and the temperatures dip to below 32º, it is recommended that you plant your growing citrus trees in a container with casters so you can easily take them outside during hot summer months and bring them indoors during winter. Use pots with lots of holes at the bottom to ensure proper drainage and a size larger than the containers your trees arrived in. Make sure to use well-draining potting soil to prevent water-retention in the soil that could cause your growing citrus trees get infected with root rot diseases.
  1. Fill pot halfway with soil then gently place the tree in.
  2. Fill in around the tree with potting soil while ensuring that the grafted area is not covered with soil. Leave an inch from top of soil to the rim of the pot for easy watering.
  3. Pack down soil lightly then water the tree well. Water the tree until water runs from the holes at the bottom of the pot.
  4. Place the tree near a sunny, south-facing window where it can get a lot of sunlight. Provide the tree with a grow light if it is not getting 6 to 8 hours of sunlight per day. Daily mist the canopy or place a tray filled with water and pebbles underneath the container to create humidity for the growing citrus tree.
  • Fertilization – Pink Variegated Lemon Trees are voracious feeders as are most citrus trees. Feed your citrus Variegated Eureka fruit tree with citrus fertilizer once every six week during spring and summer. Ease back feeding your trees with fertilizer for citrus trees to once every 2 to 3 months during fall and winter to discourage spurt growth.

Fruit & Harvesting

Fruit

Pink Variegated Lemon tree flowers are in full bloom either in spring or fall and once pollinated, the blooms develop into striped green and cream small lemons. These lemons then take a few months (as long as 9 months) to mature. As the fruits reach maturity, the stripes fade and the rind turns yellow with noticeable pink oil glands.

These low-seeded lemons have rose-hued pink flesh due to lycopene, the same carotenoid pigment that causes some grapefruit flesh to turn pink. These pink lemons have a tangy-tart flavor that becomes less acidic and sweeter as they age.

Pink lemons are a great source of dietary fiber, vitamin C, and calcium and are highly used for their juice and zest.

Harvesting

Variegated Pink lemons usually ripen all year-round but are in peak season in fall or spring. They are usually ready for harvest when the rind has turned from striped-green to yellow, has a slightly glossy appearance, and is firm to the touch.

The best way to determine if your fruits are ready to pick is by doing a taste test. Select a lemon from your tree, grasp the entire fruit is your hand and gently twist it until it breaks free from the branch. You can also use hand clippers or nippers if you are worried about damaging the tree. Taste to determine if the flavor is satisfactory and if there is sufficient juice. If not satisfied, wait for a week or two before doing another taste test.

Growing Zones

Advice

Advice

Pink Variegated Lemon Trees usually reach a height of 10 to 15 feet when planted in the ground but tend to stay smaller when planted in a pot. The usual bloom season is in spring or fall and fruit season is concentrated in fall or spring.

Like many citrus fruits, lemon trees need protection from the cold and Pink Variegated Lemon trees should be protected when the temperature go below 32º and, when covered, should be supplemented with grow lights. During the warm season you can take the tree outdoors to encourage growth and increase its chance of bearing fruits. Keep in mind that when outdoors, bees and other insects can pollinate the flowers for you, but indoors you have to help the tree by hand-pollinating each flower for fruits to develop.

Pests and Diseases

Although Pink Variegated Lemon trees are pest and disease resistant, they can still encounter pest problems or get infected with certain diseases common to citrus trees. It is important to identify diseases and treatments so you can immediately take action and mitigate possible negative impact on fruits.

  • Mites are minute bugs with feeding habits that cause defoliation and, in the long run, results in diminished health and decreased fruit production. Citrus red mites cause fruit damage while rust mites cause leaf damage.

You can control mite population with insecticidal soap, horticultural oils, or miticide spray for heavy infestation. You may also make use of helpful garden insects like ladybird beetles, the natural predator of mites to control mite population.

  • Greasy Spot Fungus is a common lemon tree disease caused by Mycosphaerella citri fungus. Symptoms include black spots on the leaves, and heavy defoliation that could later on cause the tree to die.

Proper hygiene is the best way to prevent this disease from spreading. Remove all debris or decomposed leaves from below the canopy of your tree as this becomes the breeding ground for airborne ascospores that inoculate the tree. You may also use copper fungicide spray to protect the tree and kill the citrus tree fungus, and to clear up the greasy spot disease quickly.

FAQs

Can the Pink Variegated Lemon Tree be grown indoors?

If you live in a colder climate, or lack outdoor space, the Pink Variegated Lemon Tree can be grown indoors in a pot. Be sure to place the tree where it will get the most sunlight possible.

How big will a Pink Variegated Lemon Tree get?

A Pink Variegated Lemon Tree will reach a mature size of about 8 to 12 feet tall or more, and 6 to 8 feet wide.

When can you harvest Pink Variegated Lemons?

Pink Variegated Lemon Trees bloom in late spring, and the fruit can be picked between November and March.

Do the Pink Variegated Lemons taste the same as regular lemons?

Yes. Pink Variegated Lemons have the same refreshing, tart flavor you have come to love from regular lemons, and they can be used in the exact same way.

Does the Pink Variegated Lemon Tree really grow pink lemons?

The Pink Variegated Lemon Tree grows striking variegated lemons that are yellow and green striped on the outside at first. The fruit then turns more yellow when ripe, but the inside is indeed pink, much like the color of a pink grapefruit.

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