I've noticed the leaves on my lime tree are starting to curl. It's in a spot that gets afternoon sun and its been hot in the past week so that could be it, but its next to a lemon tree which is fine. Anyone got any suggestions for a remedy?
Can I please ask whether the tree is in the ground or in a pot? And have you noticed any pests on it?
The leaves look pretty green and healthy so it probably just needs more regular watering. It doesn't look like citrus leaf miner - a moth that lays eggs in the leaves. The leaves would be more deformed.
It's in a pot and I dont think anything is eating it. Will see how dry the soil is, perhaps I haven't been watering often enough.
This is almost exactly what mine are doing...they are in huge pots...and we have had good rain, and the soil is slightly damp but not wet. It has been hot though....they are covered in fruit, so was wondering if that could be why the leaves are sacrificing themselves? No leaf drop yet though.
Glad to hear you are getting plenty of fruit @LynnieB. Your trees must be healthy. Let me tag one of our expert horticulturalist in @Noelle who might like to offer some suggestions about the cause and remedy of your curling leaves.
If you'd like to share a photo and let us know your location, it might assist Noelle in providing more specific and useful advice.
Thanks for joining in the discussion. We are pleased to have you join the Workshop community. Feel free to post anytime you need a hand with anything around the house and garden.
If citrus trees are otherwise healthy, with green foliage, flowers and plenty of fruit ripening, then the most common cause of leaf curl is lack of moisture. While you may be watering periodically when it hasn't rained and the potting mix may feel moist, the trees are not getting sufficient moisture to continue maturing the fruit while maintaining their vigour.
During hot weather, potting mix even in large pots will become quite warm and this too inhibits moisture uptake and increases evaporation from the potting mix. The heat of the sun will also evaporate moisture from the leaves faster than the roots can take it up and circulate it through the plant.
Over summer it is essential to water deeply every couple of days, ensuring the excess moisture can flow freely out through the drainage holes in your containers so the plants don't suffer from 'wet feet'. Regular soaking not only keeps the potting mix moist but also cools it.
While citrus generally t\love heat, when grown in pots rather than the soil, they may benefit from a shade cloth cover on extremely hot and/or windy days, just to reduce transpiration (moisture loss via the leaves).
Have a look at your growing conditions and watering regime - get both right and you will minimise leaf curl.
Great advice. Many thanks for sharing your expertise with us @Noelle. Much appreciated.
I am feeling very relieved to hear this advice Noelle. I actually decided to give them a big drink and discovered that they picked up beautifully....You have hit the nail on the head. Thank you very much.
I found that deep soaking them causes rootrot (sometimes called footrot) and massive leafdrop when they're in containers, yes, even terracotta ones.
I lost 6 kaffir limes, 2 persian and 1 key lime from this problem.
Granted, most of them were grafted on an alemow graft which is quite sensitive to soil that is compacted, it prefers aerated soil but watering deeply causes the air pockets to compact and the plant will wither and die soon after.
Even on persian lime cuttings it gets very tricky, I just got a new cutting that I was told to water once every 10 days during colder periods because the soil in the plastic container had to be dried out mostly or otherwise the plant would get root rot too, this cutting has had leaf curl like in the picture from the OP for 2 months now, watering it a little sooner already caused it to drop 3 leaves a few days later.