- Washington Navel Orange Tree
- Citrus Peels In Compost – Tips For Composting Citrus Peels
- Composting Citrus Peels
- Citrus in Compost and Worms
- Citrus in Compost and Mold
- Can you compost citrus and onion? Busting the myths about food scrap composting
- There’s some truth to the rumours
- What else can you put in your compost?
- It’s all about balance
- Eliminating barriers
- Good compost is a ‘joy’
- Types Of Citrus That Can Be Composted
- Do Lemons And Orange Peels Make Good Compost?
- What If My Citrus Scraps Are Moldy?
- Best Way To Compost Citrus Scraps
- In Summary
People think of Washington Navel Oranges when they think of an Orange. The delicious fruit is seedless and easy to peel.
There are a lot of things to love about this fruit bearing tree. No wonder it’s the most popular orange grown in the world. The fruit is sweet and has just enough juice for outstanding fresh eating.
It won’t make you wait long for your first crop, because it matures early. It’s also one of the first fruits ready for the winter harvest. Only a few varieties of orange like the wonderful pink fleshed Cara Cara ripen earlier.
It’s a high yield variety, so you’ll enjoy plenty of the rich tasting, easy peeling oranges. These are large, meaty pieces of fruit that are easy to peel and separate.
No wonder they are a traditional part of all school lunches around the country! They are sweet enough for kids to love, too.
Your bounty that can be left on the tree for up to three months without sacrificing their quality or integrity. This makes it easy to harvest as many as you want over the course of the season, which is perfect for the small-time or backyard grower.
Imagine growing your own fresh oranges and having the luxury of harvesting them at your leisure all through the winter months! What a healthy addition to your daily life.
Order today and start eating “Really Local”.
Not Just Fruit! It’s A Useful Ornamental Tree, As Well
The Washington Navel Orange Tree (Citrus sinensis ‘Washington’) is not all about function. Form is definitely present too, providing your yard with aesthetic beauty in any location you choose to plant it.
As you can imagine, the beautiful, waxy white flowers smell absolutely incredible. They’ll perfume your whole yard with that to-die-for intensely fresh citrus scent, adding to your outdoor enjoyment from spring and well into summer.
Local songbirds will love to nest in the tree. Keep your eyes out for hummingbirds, they’ll love those fragrant blooms!
One of the best kept secrets about growing fruit trees is that you can keep them easily pruned to the height and width you desire. Need a tiny tree? Do summer pruning for size control.
If you let it grow into a medium-sized tree, the Washington Navel Orange is an ideal single trunk tree. You can consider this a very giving specimen tree with a majestic look.
Or, keep the lower branches on to use it as a cute, rounded bush. These can be planted 6 to 8 feet apart – measuring from the center of one to the center of the next – and become a useful privacy screen or hedge to block out an unwanted view.
Although it can grow to a substantial size in the ground, the Washington Navel Orange is also suitable for container growing and can be pruned to any desired size and shape.
Yes, you can even grow it in a container. Now we have the cold winter gardeners smiling!
Citrus in general is well suited for container growing and in areas where space is limited or a move to a new home may be in your future, grow your Washington Navel Orange in a container.
You can keep container plants limbed up as a small tree or kept bushier as a shrub. Either way, the Washington Navel is a fabulous addition to your landscape.
#ProPlantTips for Care
Washington Navel Trees prefer full sun and fertile, well-drained soil conditions. It requires a moderate amount of watering.
If you’ll be growing it in the ground, please ensure it has good drainage. If you see puddles long after a rain, you’ll want to build a raised bed 12 to 18 inches high and 3-foot square.
In colder climates, the Washington Navel tree growing in a container must be moved indoors for winter. Give it have the brightest light you can and maintain moderate humidity to produce fruit successfully. Keep it in a greenhouse or attached sunroom are best.
A single tree will product fruit. But we recommend planting at least two for the largest fruit set.
Our trees are always in high demand, and we expect these large-sized, mature citrus trees to be very popular. Order now before they sell out and enjoy the benefits of growing your own easy peeling fruit anywhere in the U.S.
For juicing, we recommend the late ripening Valencia Orange.
Dwarf Orange Trees*
Who doesn’t want their very own Dwarf Orange Tree? For sweet, juicy delicious and tangy flavor, there is nothing better! Now you don’t have to live in California or Florida to enjoy your favorite fruit. Pick and eat them fresh off the tree, or juice them up for your own glass of Vitamin ‘C’ packed “goodness”. There’s almost no end to what you can do with such a versatile citrus. If you want the convenience of having your own dwarf orange tree, we can help make it happen. These dwarf orange trees make wonderful specimens in your yard (if your winter climate isn’t too severe). Live in a colder location? No problem. Dwarf citrus trees make spectacular indoor container trees too!
1. All trees are available to Pre-Order.
2. Please indicate your choice of tree by using the drop down menu below.
3. We will call you to notify you when the they will be shipped, so when ordering please make sure you leave a good daytime phone number where you can be contacted.
3. Due to longer wait times for trees, DO NOT USE PAYPAL to pay for trees. Your credit card will not be charged until your tree is ready to be shipped.
4. To allow for a shorter amount of time that your tree will be under the “stress of shipping”, these young trees are shipped directly from our supplier to you. As soon as your tree is shipped, you will receive a tracking number in order to track your tree.
5. When your tree arrives, please be prepared to plant your tree either in the ground or in a container as quickly as possible, being sure to water it as soon as you have it planted!
6. For several helpful tips on growing citrus trees, go to our Citrus Growing Tips Page.
And finally…due to USDA restrictions, citrus trees cannot be shipped to: Arizona, Texas and Florida.
Bergamot Sour Orange (available FALL 2020)
Lane_Late (call for availability)
Sanguinelli (call for availability)
Smith_Red (call for availability)
Tarocco (call for availability)
Tovita (call for availability)
WA_Navel (call for availability)
Please call 559-784-9000 for more information.
The trees available for purchase are listed in the dropdown menu below.
Due to USDA restrictions, citrus trees cannot be shipped to: Arizona, Texas and Florida.
” Buy Citrus Trees
The orange is one of the most popular fruits. Different varieties of this citrus can be found almost year-round. Are you interested in growing your own dwarf orange tree? Which type to get can be confusing since there are many different kinds of dwarf orange trees for sale, so let us help you narrow it down. Here are our top 5 recommendations, in no particular order.
Navel oranges are one of the most commonly seen citrus varieties in the market, and for good reason. This sweet and seedless orange is easy to peel, making it great to eat out of hand. While store-bought navels are nice, growing your own and eating a freshly picked orange is an entirely different experience. You can find Washington navel trees for sale in your local plant nurseries or order them online from a reliable source. Standard-sized trees usually grow to about 15-20 feet high, but a dwarf Washington navel orange tree has a maximum height of about 10 feet. Its peak season is between October and February, but they can bear fruit until April.
If you’re a fan of freshly squeezed OJ, then Valencia oranges just might be the perfect fit for you. Valencia orange trees bear succulent, super juicy fruits. Just make sure they get plenty of sunlight. Valencia trees can yield a considerable amount of fruit. You’d be surprised how little space one takes up. The standard Valencia tree only grows to about 8-15 feet, while dwarf varieties are just between 8-10 feet. This juicy citrus is a summer fruit and usually peaks around March through September.
Moro Blood Orange
Visually pleasing as well as having a very interesting flavor, blood oranges have gained a boom in popularity since around 2011. Buying blood orange trees is a good investment since they produce very versatile fruits. They’re good for juicing, eating out of hand, and for garnishing to make a dish extra colorful. When grown outdoors, the tree can grow around 8-15 feet and its fruits usually ripen around January to March. If you’re working with limited space, you can find dwarf Moro blood orange trees for sale in a nursery.
Looking for a cold-hardy sweet orange? Then the Louisiana sweet orange tree, also known as Hamlin, might just be for you. Hamlin orange trees are best grown outdoors so you can enjoy their thin-skinned juicy fruit. The fruit has a few seeds and is great for eating and juicing and has a nice tangy flavor. Like many orange varieties, this is a self-pollinating plant. It can grow as high as 14 feet. You can enjoy its fruits between October and January.
I believe there are two types of people: those who love Honeybells, and those who haven’t tasted one yet. It is known as one of the premium winter citruses and is only available in the market for a very limited amount of time every year. If you want to get your hands on these distinctly shaped oranges, you may need to pre-order them months in advance. If you search how to grow Honeybell orange trees from seed, you may get disappointed to find out that the fruit is seedless. This is a self harvesting citrus, meaning that its fruits will naturally fall off the tree when perfectly mature. If you’re a fan of Honeybell and want to avoid the hassle of preordering it in advance, then growing your tree from a local nursery might be a better option for you.
Citrus Peels In Compost – Tips For Composting Citrus Peels
In years past, some people recommended that citrus peels (orange peels, lemon peels, lime peels, etc.) should not be composted. The reasons given were always unclear and ranged from citrus peels in compost would kill off friendly worms and bugs to the fact that composting citrus peels was simply too much of a pain.
We are glad to report that this is absolutely false. Not only can you put citrus peelings in a compost pile, they are good for your compost too.
Composting Citrus Peels
Citrus peelings have gotten a bad rap in composting due in part to the fact that it can take a long time for the peels to break down. You can speed up how fast citrus in compost breaks down by cutting up the peels into small pieces.
The other half of why citrus peels in compost was once frowned on had to do with the fact that several chemicals in citrus peels are used in organic pesticides. While they are effective as pesticides, these chemical oils break down rapidly and will evaporate long before you place your compost on your garden. Composted citrus peels pose no threat to the friendly insects that may visit your garden.
Putting citrus peels in compost may actually be helpful to keeping scavengers out of your compost pile. Citrus peels often have a strong smell that many scavenger animals dislike. This smell can work to your advantage to keep common compost pests away from your compost pile.
Citrus in Compost and Worms
Though some people think that citrus peels in vermicompost can be harmful to the worms, this is not the case. Citrus peels will not hurt the worms. That being said, you may not want to use citrus peels in your worm compost simply because many kinds of worms don’t particularly like to eat them. Though it is unclear why, many kinds of worms will not eat citrus peels until they have partially decomposed.
Since vermicomposting relies on worms eating the scraps you put into their bin, citrus peels simply would not work in vermicomposting. It is best to keep citrus peels in the more traditional compost pile.
Citrus in Compost and Mold
Occasionally there are concerns about adding citrus peels to compost due to the fact that penicillium molds grow on citrus. So, how would this affect a compost pile?
At first look, having penicillium mold in a compost pile would be a problem. But there a few things you have to factor in that would lessen the possibility of this problem.
- First, a well tended compost pile would simply get too hot for the mold to survive. Penicillium prefers a cooler environment to grow in, typically between an average fridge temperature and room temperature. A good compost pile should be warmer than this.
- Second, most commercially sold citrus fruit are sold with a mild antimicrobial wax applied. Since penicillium mold is an issue for citrus growers, this is the standard way to prevent mold growth while the fruit is waiting to be sold. The wax on the fruit is mild enough not to affect your entire compost pile (because people have to come in contact with it too and may eat it) but strong enough to prevent the mold from growing on the surface of the citrus.
So, it appears that mold on citrus peels in compost would only be a problem for people who are using homegrown citrus and also using a passive or cool composting system. In most instances, heating up your compost pile should effectively alleviate any future mold issues or worries.
Can you compost citrus and onion? Busting the myths about food scrap composting
By Kate Midena
Posted April 28, 2019 08:17:17
If you have found yourself in the middle of a debate around the dinner table about composting lately, you are (surprisingly) not alone.
As navel oranges come into season and onions find their way into slow-cooked meals, can you just throw their peels into your compost bin?
And what about leftover bread, coffee grounds and cardboard?
“There’s nothing to be afraid of when it comes to composting,” host of Gardening Australia, Costa Georgiadis, said.
“Composting is the people’s art. More money doesn’t make better compost.”
While that might be music to the average homemaker’s ears, composting is indeed an artform, and an area littered with old wives tales.
So if you are in the habit of throwing anything and everything into your bin and leaving it to fend for itself, there are a few things you should know.
There’s some truth to the rumours
“The odd mandarin peel or the odd lemon in there, a good thriving compost will manage that no problem,” Costa said.
“But if you’re juicing oranges five or six days a week for three or four family members, that can overload a compost.”
Costa said most backyard gardeners would have a compost heap suited to general household kitchen waste and garden clippings.
But, in order for things like citrus to break down properly and not overload the heap, it was important to take into account the climate of both your compost and the area you live.
“As the cooler months kick in, the citrus is not going to break down as readily,” Costa explained.
“I’d suggest drying your citrus — putting them on a rack and drying them in the sun.”
And, while drying citrus might sound laborious, Costa said people should bear in mind that, once the citrus has dried, you could use it in baking, to make your own citrus cleaners, or even as fire starters.
“You’ll get that wonderful citrus aroma when you cook them off because the oil in them is released, they’re like nature’s little lucifers,” he said.
As with citrus, things like onions, eggshells and garden waste can also be added to your compost, but with caution.
“If you were a French onion soup distributor I’d think carefully about dropping in bucketloads because, like citrus, it’s going to have that same overload impact,” Costa said.
“I get asked the same thing about eucalyptus leaves, and you can put them in, but not all the time as the compost can’t deal with it.
“Think about your ingredients, and think one word: balance.”
What else can you put in your compost?
The usual rule of thumb is that anything that has “lived” can go in your compost, including fruit, vegetables, tea bags and coffee grounds.
Even things like paper and cardboard (including toilet rolls!) can go into your bin as layers, to break up the food waste.
“Think about cardboard as basically something that has lived,” Costa said.
“Anything fresh, like food scraps or fresh green leaves or twigs or grass clippings — they’re all nitrogen because they’re still alive.
“Something like cardboard is basically like a dead tree, so you can use that because it gives you balance; it’s carbon. The worms love it, they get in there and munch it down.”
As well as cardboard, you can recycle your newspapers in the compost, by opening the newspaper up (as if you are reading it) and shredding it down the length of the page as narrowly as you can, before shaking it into your compost.
“You can even put old cotton clothes in there, and the worms will eat it and break it down,” Costa added.
It’s all about balance
The key to a good healthy compost goes beyond what you add to it; you need a good balance between carbon (dry, ‘brown’ materials like cardboard, paper and dry leaves) and nitrogen (moist, ‘green’ materials like garden clippings, vegetable and fruit scraps).
According to Costa, getting a good balance is the area where people fall down 99 per cent of the time.
“At the end of the day compost is usually too wet, or too dry,” he said.
“If you squeeze it and it’s like wringing someone’s hair after they’ve come out of the water, it’s too wet. If you squeeze it and there are sand particles coming through, it’s too dry.”
A general rule of thumb is to have two parts brown material to one part green material, but if even that is sounding too overwhelming, the best thing to do is turn your compost regularly.
“I look for a compost that gets turned regularly, once a week or once a fortnight,” Costa said.
“Use one of those cone barrel composts, or a compost corkscrew or you can buy from the nursery.
“Corkscrew it once a week or once a fortnight, add a little bit of water, about your average watering can’s worth, and when you squeeze it, it should be just moist enough to get a drop or two of juice.”
If the thought of compost “juice” put you off, chances are you are also concerned about things like flies, rats and mice. A few simple tweaks can eliminate all these things.
If you cover the top of your compost you will not end up with vinegar flies, and if you get the balance of your compost right and avoid meat products, you will eliminate smells and rats and mice will stay away.
“You can also place a piece of chicken wire on the ground and put your bin on top of it so all of the liquids and any microbial activity can still move up and down through the earth, but vermin won’t be able to burrow their way up,” Costa explained.
Another thing to consider, especially if you live in an apartment, is a small, indoor composting system like a bokashi bin.
Latest figures show that in the ACT alone, 37 per cent of the weekly rubbish collection consists of food scraps.
Something like a bokashi bin, which can sit in prime position on your benchtop, or even a balcony worm farm, is perfect for collecting that food waste.
Good compost is a ‘joy’
If you do struggle to get the balance in your compost right, the good news is that everything is redeemable.
“When a compost is singing, you can stick your head in the bin and it will not offend,” Costa explained.
“It will be like a lovely, lush, fruitcake-like smell.
“If you do have an anaerobic compost, all you have to do is add carbon, brown material — shredded paper or some soil, to take up that moisture. As soon as you get air back in there the smell goes immediately.
“When you find the sweet spot and it’s humming, it’s just a joy.”
You can watch Gardening Australia on ABC TV 7:30pm Friday or catch up on iview.
Many people hear the myth that you should never compost citrus scraps like orange peels and lemons. There’s been a debate within the composting community about this topic, but the final consensus is yes, you can compost citrus.
Why the debate? Vermicomposting methods use worms that shy away from citrus since they don’t care to eat the fruit until it decomposes. But, citrus doesn’t harm the composting worms, and they’ll eventually get around to eating it.
For everyone else, adding citrus to your cold or hot composting routine brings benefits. Continue reading to learn about which types of citrus you can compost, what nutrients they add, and the best way to add citrus scraps to compost.
What to Expect From This Article
Types Of Citrus That Can Be Composted
You can compost every type of citrus fruit including:
You can use the peels, rinds, and pulp in your compost pile, which is a bonus for those who like using their juicer frequently or enjoy having fresh fruit every day.
Citrus peels fit into the “green compost” category, which means it’s a source of nitrogen.
Citrus fruits do take longer than other fruits to break down. Only particular bacteria will chew on the d-limonene chemical found in the fruit skin, but it will happen. See when compost is ready for more information on stages and what it looks like.
A bonus of composting citrus fruits is how they heat the pile, which helps speed up the overall decomposition process.
The strong scent that citrus fruit adds to the compost pile can help deter pesky animals and bugs. The oils in the fruit break down fast enough, so they aren’t harmful to the useful insects you want to keep around.
Do Lemons And Orange Peels Make Good Compost?
Lemons and orange peels make good compost material when you incorporate them correctly, which you can read about in the final section below. But generally, lemons and oranges have specific tendencies that can enhance or harm your compost pile, so use them wisely.
Too much lemon waste added at one time will raise the acidity of the heap, setting off a disruption within your compost pile. Bacteria may have a hard time breaking down the lemon bits fast enough, which could lead to an off-putting odor in your compost heap.
On the other hand, certain plants like rhododendrons, azaleas, and camellias love acid-rich soil. Using compost made with lots of lemon and orange waste could work wonders in these areas of your garden.
Oranges introduce nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus into your compost heap. These nutrients aid in the waste breakdown within your pile and help enrich your final compost medium.
What If My Citrus Scraps Are Moldy?
Are you afraid to toss moldy citrus fruit into your composting bin? Don’t worry; rotten citrus scraps are a fantastic addition to your compost pile since they are already starting to break down.
Another point to make is that a properly maintained compost pile should be hot enough inside to kill off any mold spores on the citrus fruit within a short time.
You do have to take extra care with moldy citrus, as it is a very wet waste material. Using additional bulking agents, like wood chips or shredded cardboard, will offset the moisture and keep your compost pile in optimal condition.
You can speed up the decomposing process when you add moldy citrus scraps to the center of the pile on top of dry leaves. Cover the scraps with grass or paper. The extra heat that generates in the center of the heap will break down those moldy citrus fruits in no time.
Best Way To Compost Citrus Scraps
Take the time to break down your citrus scraps into very small pieces, so more surface area has exposure to the bacteria within your compost heap.
Always balance the “wet” waste of your citrus fruits with an equal amount of a bulking agent like dry leaves to keep your compost heap healthy.
Deal with the seeds. Hot composting piles should reach the temperature that will damage seeds and keep them from germinating. See more on compost temperatures and how they affect your piles.
Cold composting piles rarely generate enough heat to kill the seeds in citrus fruits. Always remove the seeds before disposal, or you could find tree seedlings growing in your garden later on.
Do you want to speed up the breakdown process when practicing cold composting methods? Save all your citrus scraps in a lidded bucket and let them sit while they rot out and grow mold. Once you see a healthy dose of mold, toss the contents into your compost pile.
Now that you know it is perfectly safe to compost citrus, you no longer have to toss those orange peels or lemon scraps into the trash that ends up at the landfill.
Yes, citrus indeed takes more time and care to breakdown within your compost pile than other fruits or vegetables. But, you shouldn’t let that prevent you from adding it.
By using the best citrus composting methods you read about above, you can confidently incorporate any citrus scraps to your compost bin.
Enjoy the benefits of the extra acidity, moisture, and nutrients it brings to your compost, and use the finished product to grow beautiful, healthy plants!