Orange (Container Grown) Growing Guide

Orange (Container Grown)

Crop Rotation Group

Miscellaneous 

Soil

Warm, moist soil, well-enriched with organic matter. Oranges grafted onto a dwarfing rootstock may be grown in containers.

Position

A sheltered spot in full sun. In gardens where the temperatures drop below 0 °C grow them in containers that can be moved into a warm, sheltered area during winter.

Frost tolerant

No. Certain Valencia orange varieties will survive mild frosts (-1°C to -2°C) if protected when young.

Feeding

In spring and summer, feed with a balanced organic fertiliser. Yellowing leaves indicate a need for more nitrogen.

Companions

Oranges and other citrus are heavy feeders that resent close company.

Spacing

Single Plants: 60cm (1' 11") each way (minimum)
Rows: 60cm (1' 11") with 60cm (1' 11") row gap (minimum)

Sow and Plant

Set out new plants in late winter or early spring. Grow in containers of rich compost to keep plants compact and to make it easy to bring plants indoors for the winter. Good drainage is essential. Start small plants in containers at least 30cm (1ft) wide and pot them up a size yearly until they reach mature size.
Our Garden Planner can produce a personalised calendar of when to sow, plant and harvest for your area.

Notes

Prune in spring or summer to shape plants, and watch for thorns. Very sweet oranges need a long season of warm weather, but kumquats, calamondin oranges and satsumas fruit well in marginal areas or when grown in containers.

Harvesting

Pick when richly coloured and fully ripe. Picking can continue for several weeks as fruits do not ripen all at once.

Troubleshooting

Grow outdoors in the warmer months to expose plants to heat and pollinators. Soft soap sprays can help against scale insects.

Planting and Harvesting Calendar

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Pests which Affect Orange (Container Grown)