Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Lemon Harvest!

My lemon harvest may not seem like much to some people but it means something to me. It is another one of those things crossed off my "to-do" list. Citrus is not an easy thing to grow here in Northern Georgia. We don't have quite a long enough growing season and we get too cold in the winter. Therefore my lemon tree has to stay potted and I have to move it into the greenhouse when it turns cold and move it back out when it warms back up. I have tried several times to grow citrus from seedlings but never managed to keep them growing for long. Starting with a tree this year definitely has advantages.
My little meyer lemon had lots and lots of lemons on it this spring but as we moved into summer it kept dropping them until there were only a few left. Yesterday I was finally able to pick the few remaining since they had finally turned completely yellow.
There were 6 of them. How that number got to be six I'll never know because I would have sworn for months now that there were only five and it is not like the extra one could have gotten all hidden in the foliage either. Still there were six when I went to pick them.
They all ripened at the same time and they are all approximately the same size.


So here is my harvest. A few days late to join in Monday's harvest but I wanted to make sure that they were completely ripe (those are the eggs from the last few days as well).
I'm thinking I might make lemonade with them just because I want to make sure I get to really taste them.
Now that I have harvested the lemons I believe the tree needs to be transplanted into a larger pot. I'm hoping it will  then produce even more next year. What a wonderful thing it would be if we could produce all our own lemon juice!
I'll also keep the peels and put them in some vinegar and water and try to make my own homemade lemon cleaner.  
The seeds from the lemons will have to be kept and planted because I have read that meyer lemons seeds produce very good trees that produce nice lemons even if they aren't grafted. If I can just keep them all going through the winter...

21 comments:

  1. Congrats on your lemons. I wish I could grow them. But it is too cold here and I don't have a spot to put them inside in the winter.

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  2. You have a nice looking Meyer lemon tree there. Yes, save the seeds and replant. Your lemonade will taste amazing. Have you ever considered making sugar coated lemon peel candy? It's just a thought!

    Enjoy and have a great day.

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  3. That's cool Becky! I hope they taste great!

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  4. Wow, Becci - good for you! We can't grow citrus here - too cold and far too short a season. I agree - lemonade would be a good choice to really taste them. Let us know if you like them.

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  5. In my garden a harvest of six lemons all at once would be considered a bumper crop!

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    1. That's exactly how I feel too Mark. The first citrus I have ever grown! Haven't made the lemonade yet, waiting for them to get a bit softer...or maybe I just can't stand to cut one yet :)

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  6. Congrats Becky. Looks like you might need a bigger pot though. I would suggest something the size of half a wine barrel if you want lots of lemons. I know this will make it harder to move but if you only have to move in in once at the start of winter and once at the start of spring it will be worth it.

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    1. I already transplanted it into a nice big pot.

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  7. Oh Becky! I love Meyer lemons! They have such a unique flavor! I bet those peels would be delicious candied! My Myer lemon tree has gotten really big but the cold spell last winter caused it to die off so there were no spring blooms this year. The thorns are so long and dangerous! I see them in your photo. I'm sure you'll figure a way to transport it when you need to.

    I love your new tabs! That makes navigation easier. I need to do that. I also have made a few changes to my blog. It will come up in your feed as it's original name: Simply Practical. Too confusing the other way. Thanks for sharing your harvests! Blessings from Bama!

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    1. LOl, the tabs have always been there.

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  8. My friend has a Meyer lemon tree in her backyard and she never takes it in during the winter and that's here in Northern Alabama. Guess she must have it surrounded by a fence or something cause I wouldn't think she could grow lemons here. You could put your lemon tree pot on a wheeled cart. It would make it easier to move.

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    1. This tree costs me $35, I don't think I'll take any chances.

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  9. Beautiful! I can almost smell them.

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  10. I live in north Alabama, between Huntsville and Birmingham. My friend grows a Meyer lemon tree in her yard. She was going to give me lemon seeds, but she died. I heard of someone growing a fig and constructing a house around it in the winter. It was a shelter that he could uncover in the summer and easily recover the shelter in the winter. Maybe you could do that if you lemon tree gets too large. Bales of straw or hay around the base inside the shelter and outside help to keep the ground warm. It seemed to work for a fig much north of here. I would be really happy if I could have a tree and grow lemons. How neat.

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    1. Meyer lemons are a dwarf variety so I don't think it will get too big. Figs grow like weeds here.

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  11. Really pleased for you and your lemons. I really enjoy Meyer lemons and make lemonade with them a lot. I've never thought to save the seeds though - I will definitely try planting some.

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    1. It is better if you plant them right out of the lemon and don't let them dry out.

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  12. any harvest is a good harves and its only going to get bigger and better as the years progress. well done

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  13. That's a pretty good effort for such a little tree :)

    On the eggs can I share that I've read and been told in numerous places, not to wash them as there is a protective something on the outer of the egg. best to leave as is and then wash them right before you use them, if you need to wash them...

    anyway. Each to their own :)
    Enjoy those lemons - whatever you end up doing with them!

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    1. Yeah, I have heard that a lot but I really think it is crap. If you leave the dirt on it it makes a stain on the egg. That lets me know that the dirt can get through the so called protective coating. I'll wash mine before they go in the frig--if they need it. If they are clean, I leave them alone.

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  14. For those of you who think of citrus trees in orchards as being relatively small when I lived in Southern California the development was in an old citrus orchard so we were surrounded by orange and grapefruit trees. There was a very large lemon tree which was left in the right of way of the new road. Very large means well over 100 feet tall. Probably thousands of lemons on this tree. I picked a shopping bag of lemons from the ground off of one branch. These trees can be very prolific.

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