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Early Gold Orange 1
Citrus Orange Early Gold 2  (Courtesy of Saville et al  Herbarium NCSC; http://idtools.org/id/citrus/citrusid/)

EARLYGOLD ORANGE TREE

$64.99

Planting and Care Facts (pdf)Zone: 8B-10

(Can not be shipped outside of Florida)

Citrus Size Info

9 in stock

SKU: 1087 Categories: ,

Product Description

Earlygold Orange Tree – Citrus sinensis ‘Earlygold’

While the seed originated in Brazil, The Earlygold orange tree was developed and released by Dr Bill Castle at the Citrus Research and Education Center (CREC) in Lake Alfred, Florida in 1999. Earlygold has a great flavor for an early ripening orange. Early ripening oranges are the best choice for growers in colder area, as the fruit is ripe before the coldest weather sets in. Fruit ripens October to February. Self fertile. Zones 8B-10.

Note: We’re so sorry… but due to agricultural restrictions we cannot ship any plants to international countries, or the states of California, Hawaii and Alaska. Also, no citrus trees can be shipped outside of the state of Florida.

Additional Information

Pot Size

3 Gal

Plant Height

3-5 Ft.

Planting Zone

8B-10

Pollinator

Self-fertile

Ripening Season

October to February

Choosing the Right Citrus Variety…

Hamlin Orange 3Citrus fruits are among the most delicious and easy to grow fruits available! Containers allow folks in temperate climates or apartments to grow citrus. In Zones 8 and 9, citrus can be planted in the ground with a little help from their friends. In Zone 10, you are home free. Trust us – there is nothing as good as fresh homegrown oranges, grapefruit, lemons and limes! With a few simple steps, anyone can grow their own citrus.

Citrus varieties differ in the type and quality of fruit, cold hardiness and adult tree size. Our varieties fall into three groups: Easy-to-grow, Moderately Cold-hardy, and Container citrus. Our Easy-to-grow varieties include those plants tolerating freezes of 20º F or less. In this group are kumquats, satsumas, tangerines, sour oranges and some varieties of limes and lemons. Our Moderately cold-hardy fruit include sweet oranges and grapefruit; these varieties have freeze tolerances of between 20-26ºF. Container citrus cannot tolerate frosts and freezes and must be inside during freezing weather. Key limes and blood oranges fall into the Container citrus group.

GET THEM ON THE RIGHT ROOT STOCK For successful outdoor plantings in Zones 8 and 9, we cannot overemphasize the importance of choosing a plant grafted onto the correct root stock. We highly recommend using citrus grafted onto Trifoliate Orange rootstocks. These varieties help keep plants dormant during cold spells when new foliage may be damaged by cold temperatures. Check the root stock on your citrus to learn how to grow it successfully.

 Please see “Just the Facts: Container Citrus” for details on successfully growing Container citrus.

POLLINATION

Citrus in BloomMost varieties of citrus are self fertile meaning you can plant one tree by itself and get a good crop. The exception is the Tangelo group. This group needs cross pollination to set a crop, most varieties will need a particular variety to do the job, so pay close attention and buy the correct pollinator. The Clementines are another group that will fruit heavier will a pollinator. Unfortunately when pollinated they will be seedy. Most commercial Clementines are grown in isolated blocks away from other varieties of citrus to insure they are seedless. If you want seedless Clementines avoid planting  the recommended pollinators near by, but also remember your crops will less abundant.

 

LANDSCAPING WITH CITRUS TREES Open Me)

Landscaping with Citrus Trees…..

Citrus ChinottoCitrus in BloomThere is something special about citrus. Beautiful, evergreen plants with lush bright green foliage and heavenly fragrant blooms. Tuck them around your windows so you can enjoy their sweet fragrance in the house. The Kumquats, Lemons, Limequats and Chinotto Orange grow densely and can be sheared into any shape or form. Use them for hedges or foundation plantings around the house or line pathways with them. Espalier them against a sunny wall. Oranges and grapefruit will grow larger so are best trained into small round trees. They make excellent specimen trees.

 

LEARN WHERE AND HOW TO PLANT YOUR CITRUS TREES (Open Me)

SITE SELECTION AND CORRECT SPACING FOR CITRUS TREES

Just Fruits and Exotics Citrus OrchardWe can’t control the climate, but we can select planting sites that maximize the chances of success and minimize the need for freeze protection. In general, cold winds come from the north and west. Never plant citrus in the North wind! Cold air drains down slopes, so the tops and sides of hills are warmer than low spots. Overhanging trees help trap heat, as do ponds or other water bodies. Citrus on the south or east of buildings will be protected from north winds and will receive heat radiated from the house. As you plan your plantings, try to locate potential sites offering some cold protection combined with maximum sunlight and good drainage. Where do you like to be when the cold winds blow? Put your citrus in that spot.

Well-drained sandy loam soils are preferred, but citrus will grow on many soil types if good drainage is provided. Citrus will grow more vigorously and produce more fruit in full sun. By full sun we mean at least 6 hours of sun in the afternoon. You can also grow citrus under pine trees as long as you have shifting light all day long.

 

MATURE HEIGHT AND SPACING When thinking about where to place your citrus tree, it pays to think about how large the trees will get. With citrus the tree size is determined by fruit type and what root stock the tree is grafted on. See the chart for good guidelines. 

MATURE HEIGHT AND SPACING OF CITRUS TREES

 

MATURE HEIGHT OF LARGE GROWERS 15 to 20 FOOT TALL

SPACE TREE 15 to 20 FOOT APART

 – Not Grafted Lemons 

 – Grapefruit and Pummelos-Grafted on Swingle or Rubidoux Trifolite

 

MATURE HEIGHT OF MEDIUM SIZE GROWERS 10 to 15 FOOT TALL

SPACE TREE 10 to 15 FOOT APART

 – Grapefruit Grafted on Flying Dragon Trifoliate

  – Oranges Grafted on Swingle or Rubidoux Trifoliate

 – Tangerines Grafted on Swingle or Rubidoux Trifoliate

 – Lemons Grafted on Swingle or Rubidoux Trifoliate

MATURE HEIGHT OF SMALL GROWERS 8 to 10 FOOT TALL

SPACE TREES 10 FOOT PART

 – Kumquats, Limequats, Orangequats Grafted on Rubidoux Trifoliate

 – Limequats Not Grafted

 – Oranges Grafted on Flying Dragon Trifoliate

  – Tangerines Grafted on Flying Dragon Trifoliate

  – Lemons Grafted on  Flying Dragon Trifoliate

 

GETTING THE SOIL RIGHT AND PLANTING CITRUS TREES

Planting a TreeCitrus on trifoliate orange rootstock require a somewhat acid soil (pH 5.5-6.0). If you are in doubt about the pH of your soil, take a soil sample to the Cooperative Extension Agent in your county for a soil test. Adjust soil acidity as necessary. Citrus on its own root (no graft) like a more alkaline soil (6.0-6.5). Depending on the tree you have follow one of these two planting instructions.

PLANTING CITRUS TREES

Grafted Citrus

Dig a planting hole approximately three times the width of the pot and at the same depth as the root ball. Enrich the planting hole with peat moss or composted pine bark mixed with soil dug from the hole (50:50 mix). Do NOT add mushroom compost or manure to the planting hole OR use it as mulch. Manure can make citrus on trifoliate rootstock very sick and could even kill the tree. 

Non-grafted Citrus

Dig a planting hole approximately three times the width of the pot and at the same depth as the root ball. Enrich the planting hole with manure or mushroom compost mixed with soil dug from the hole (50:50 mix).

 

Gently remove the plant from the pot and place in the planting hole. To avoid burying too deep, make sure plant is positioned with the top most roots at the soil line. Fill the planting hole with the mix of soil and organic matter; gently tamp it in. Water thoroughly to settle the roots and eliminate air pockets.

Do NOT put fertilizer in the planting hole. Only apply fertilizer if it is the correct time of year (see Fertilization section below).

If desired, construct a water basin around the base of the tree approximately 36 inches in diameter. Keep the area under the canopy of the tree clear of grass and weeds to minimize competition for water and nutrients.

 

MULCHING Mulch the area under the canopy with 2-3 inches of mulch, leaving an area about 6 inches from the trunk mulch free or at most only ½ inch thick. Citrus like their roots on top and slightly exposed. There seems to be some controversy on whether to mulch citrus or not. Some soil born fungus like Phytophthora  are known to live in mulch and this can be a possible issue. The trifoliate orange root stocks like soils with high organic matter, so we feel mulching can be beneficial in sandy soils. When growing citrus in soils naturally high in organic matter like  clay, it is advisable not to mulch the trees.

 

LEARN HOW TO FERTILIZE AND WATER YOUR CITRUS TREES (Open Me)

FERTILIZING CITRUS TREES

The type of fertilizer you choose may be chemical or organic. Make sure that the fertilizer contains iron, zinc, manganese, magnesium, molybdenum, copper and boron. These minor elements are very important to plants and most soils are low in these elements. Application rates vary according to age of plant.

See chart below.

FERTILIZING GRAFTED CITRUS TREES

10-8-8 (with minerals)

For Acid Lovers (Azaleas &

Camellias)

1 cup for each year of tree’s life

(i.e. 1 cup for 1 year old, 2 cups for 2 year old, etc)

– Max out at 9 cups for Mature trees.

Espoma Holly Tone

For Acid Lovers (Azaleas &

Camellias)

6 cups for 1 year old

10 cups for 2 year old (4-6ft)

18 cups for 7-9ft tree

24 cups for trees over 9ft

 

FERTILIZING NON GRAFTED CITRUS TREES

12-4-8 (with minerals)

with minerals

1 cup for each year of tree’s life

– Max out at 9 cups for Mature trees.

Espoma Citrus Tone 

6 cups for 1 year old

10 cups for 2 year old (4-6ft)

18 cups for 7-9ft tree

24 cups for trees over 9ft

Spread the fertilizer evenly under the entire canopy of the plant avoiding a 5-inch area around the trunk. Water or rake in. For Zones 9-10, fertilize 3 times each year in late February, late May and late July/early August. For plants further north (Zones 7-8b), fertilize in March or after bud break. Never fertilize after August (June in Zones 7-8b) as this will promote new growth late in the year which will be subject to freeze damage.

WATERING CITRUS TREES

The first year is the critical time for the establishment of a new citrus. Water thoroughly twice a week on light soils and once a week on clay soils. Soak the entire root system deeply – this usually takes 40-50 minutes. Citrus should receive at least 1 inch of water each week for best growth and fruit production. Water regularly, especially during dry periods. Fruit may drop prematurely if insufficiently irrigated during dry spells.

LEARN HOW TO PRUNE YOUR CITRUS TREES (Open Me)

PRUNING CITRUS TREES

Prune in June/July to maintain height and to thin out interior for good air circulation. At anytime remove dead, damaged, crossed or diseased limbs, water sprouts and rootstock suckers. Trim back excessive growth to keep an even shaped canopy. Make all cuts flush with the limb or the next largest branch. Do not leave stubs. Never prune in winter as this will stimulate growth

 

LEARN HOW TO THIN YOUR CITRUS TREE CROP LOAD TO KEEP YOUR TREE HEALTHY (Open Me)

THINNING FRUIT ON CITRUS TREES

It is important not to let your newly planted citrus tree bear much fruit until they has become established. Early bearing can stunt and set the tree back from developing good size and structure. It can also weaken the tree, setting it up for insect or disease issues. It is best to pull all of the fruit off the tree the first year and thin the fruit for years 2 and 3 to help the tree be come well established. Citrus tree are prone to Alternate Bearing as they age. This in a syndrome that results from allowing the trees to carry too heavy of a fruit load. The weaken tree responses by bearing a very light crop the following year . On years that the tree bear excessively, thin or cut the heavy clusters to just 2 or 3 fruit. Do this when the fruit are about walnut size. You trees will live longer and remain healthy if you learn how to thin their fruit loads.

LEARN HOW TO CONTROL INSECTS AND DISEASE ON YOUR CITRUS TREES (Open Me)

Citrus have few disease or insect problems. The major insect pests in North Florida are citrus leaf miners and leaf and bark scales. For leaf miners, use an organic spray containing Spinosad. For scale use a combination of Neem Oil and a summer-weight Dormant Oil in mid summer as both a treatment and a routine preventative for these pests. Read and follow label directions.

Always remember that good disease resistance begins with the health of the plant. Plants stressed from lack of water, not enough sun or being under fed are more susceptible to disease and insects.  Maintaining good sanitation practices in the orchard is most important. The removal of diseased and dead wood, and picking up fallen or rotting fruit off the trees as it occurs, will go a long way in keeping disease and insects at a minimum. Spray at first sign of an issue, rather than waiting until the problem is out of hand will go a long way to keeping your plants healthy and fruiting properly.

LEARN HOW TO PROTECT YOUR CITRUS TREES FROM COLD WEATHER (Open Me)

FROST PROTECTION

 Citrus grown in areas subject to frost may require winter protection. In general, young trees are more susceptible to frost damage than adult trees. Trees that have not fully entered dormancy are more likely to be injured and fully dormant trees. During the first few years, young trees need frost protection, but many varieties can be left unattended once they are 4-5 years old. We recommend all citrus be protected during the first 2 years in the ground when the temperature falls to 27 degrees and lower.

Just Fruits and Exotics Citrus Freeze Protection 1At Just Fruits and Exotics, we have developed a simple system to protect our citrus. In fall, as the chance of frosts increases, we place supports or wire around each tree. We have covers ready next to the trees for frosty nights. We use a two-layer system of burlap, sheets or woven ground cloth covered by plastic sheeting. Mulch is removed from inside the wire ring to increase heat absorption during the day and the edges of the covers buried to retain warm air.

After we set up the rings, it only requires a few minutes to cover the plants when cold temperatures are expected. We use office staplers to seal the covers. Tree MUST be uncovered or vented during the day to prevent overheating.

Do not despair if your tree is damaged by frost. As long as the plant does not freeze to below the graft, the tree will regrow. Most trees will lose some, or all, of their leaves and/or fruit crop, but chances are they will re-sprout quickly and set fruit the following year.

Just Fruits and Exotics Citrus Freeze Protection 13STRETCH YOUR CITRUS SEASON All citrus fruit are easily damaged when temperatures reach 27F. On mature trees, many growers in marginal areas are forced to harvest their fruit before the first freeze in early winter.  Here at Just Fruits and Exotics we have developed a system that allows us to protect the mature trees and continue to fruit harvest into the winter. We have also found this technique to be useful for growing late fruiting varieties, like Valencia and Blood Oranges and some Grapefruit that ripen in the January to June window. This system allows us a much longer citrus harvest, with fresh citrus fruit from October to June in our Northern Florida area. Be sure to read your “Frost and Freeze Protection Care Guide” to get the full story.