1:39 am - Friday, February 28 2020
Home / Food / Adventures In Local Food / HOW TO GROW HUGE LEMONS INDOORS




Written by guest blogger, Kimberlee Bastien from The Old Walsh Farm in Coverdale, New Brunswick.


Photo Credit: Kimberlee Bastien

I have a secret to share about lemon trees. They don’t just produce delicious lemons. They also produce tiny, delicate white blossoms that give off the most delectable, sweet, citrusy floral perfume.

And despite what you may have read online in other articles, in my experience, they are EASY to grow indoors – if you grow the right variety and treat it well and don’t mind waiting up to 9 months for the fruit to ripen. That’s right. NINE looooonnnngggg months!

Note: This is the reason for the green lemon in the above picture. I wish it was an exotic green coloured lemon from a faraway land, but no. It’s an unripe one. I just couldn’t wait 9 months to share this post with you.

Before I get into the details of how to grow a lemon tree indoors, here are four reasons why you should have one.


Welcome to my lemon orchard/sunny reading nook. The big, tall tree is a Ponderosa lemon tree, which produces lemons the size of a grapefruit. The smaller pot contains a Meyer lemon bush. It doesn’t produce large lemons, but unlike the lemon tree, it produces lemons year round. Photo Credit: Kimberlee Bastien

I had no idea lemon trees gave off such a wonderful, fresh lemon aroma and now I couldn’t imagine not having this spectacular scented treat in my home. And not just once a year. My two lemon trees like to bloom several times a year. It’s like having your own all natural scented plug in. But better. Because you get to eat lemons!


Or at least that is what I’m led to believe because I’m still waiting for my ONE, humongous lemon to turn yellow so I can harvest it. I have had this tree for a year and although there are other small ones beginning to grow, this is my first fully grown lemon. It’s the size of a grapefruit and weighs roughly two pounds.


Look at the size of this Ponderosa lemon! It is the same size as a grapefruit – maybe slightly bigger. If only it would turn yellow soon. Nine months is a long wait. Photo Credit: Kimberlee Bastien

But it’s still green.  Apparently, it can take up to 9 months for them to ripen, which they do from the inside out. Why is my lemon so big? It’s a Ponderosa lemon, which is supposed to have an intense lemon flavour making them excellent for juicing (read: lots of homemade gourmet lemonade) and cooking or just squirting into your evening tea.

Each lemon also has an abundance of lemon skin for zest. Fresh lemon blueberry muffins, anyone? Or maybe lemon cheesecake? Or lemon zest pasta? The point is you will have the freshest lemons on hand for whatever recipes you invent.

I chose the self fertile Ponderosa lemon tree because it isn’t too fussy about soil type and does well in containers or so the tag told me. Fortunately, the tag did live up to its claims.


This is a Meyer lemon bush. It is a much more prolific producer of lemons than my Ponderosa tree, but the lemons are much smaller. Photo Credit: Kimberlee Bastien

I also grow this Meyer lemon bush indoors. No, it’s not a tree, but in comparison to my “one lemon wonder tree”, after one year this little bush has several lemons growing on it and it is supposed to produce year round. Meyer lemons are also juicier and less acidic than a typical lemon.


I’ll be honest. I didn’t have high hopes for my lemon tree experiment. I had read it is really hard to grow lemon trees indoors, but for once something I tried was actually easy. Of course, I had to write this blog post to celebrate this fact – The Old Walsh Farm tried something and it worked and they didn’t injure any body parts (or their animals’ body parts), get stung, cry, or….you get the picture.


Indoor plants seem to be all the rage in décor these days so if you’re going to plant something in your home anyway, why not consider a lemon tree? They are definitely beautiful with their dark, green glossy leaves, lacy pink and white flowers and bright yellow lemons – well, at least in 9 months from now when my lemons turn yellow.


Even Spiderman enjoys spending his down time relaxing beside a lemon tree…and playing Legos. Photo Credit: Kimberlee Bastien

“How To” continued here.

Kimberly Bastien co-owns The Old Walsh Farm in Coverdale, NB. Check out their websiteand follow their adventures in homesteading on Facebook, Pinterest & Instagram

Learn more about Our Food SENB: http://www.nbfoodsecurity.ca/westmorland-albert-food-security-action-network/
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Learn more about The Our Food Project NS: https://ecologyaction.ca/ourfood
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About Ecology Action Centre

This is a blog from the Food Action Committee of the Ecology Action Centre, based in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Join us as we document our experiments with sauerkraut, push for urban chickens, make giant batches of jam, and plant some seeds (both literally and figuratively). For more about what the Food Action Committee is working on, visit our website.


The views and opinions expressed in this content are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of haligonia.ca.


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