Citrus Tree Fruit Drop

Daniel Gill  |  7/28/2015 7:31:23 PM

I have a blood navel orange tree. The navel turns orange and then the fruit drops on the ground. This is the second year it has happened. The tree is about 3 years old.

- Robert D.

Your tree is still young. We allow citrus trees 5 years after planting to settle in and mature. During this period, trees may not produce any fruit, may produce erratically or may drop much of the crop it sets. The tree is aborting some of the fruit. When this happens, it will begin to turn color before it drops. So, this is mostly due to the young age of the tree. Time and good care will take care of this.

Even older citrus trees may drop fruit in late summer as they adjust their crop to what they can ripen. Also, stress can encourage fruit drop. A period of intense heat and drought, as much of the state is currently experiencing, can encourage some fruit drop in late summer.

Dan Gill
Consumer Horticulture Specialist

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