Please help me save my Lemon tree

Hello,
I have a Mayer Lemon tree which is around 5 feet tall. I bought it around November last year and since then, the tree produced plenty of loverly smelling flowers that turned into small fruit. The problems started then. The fruit fell off first and then loads of leaves. I was confused as to why this was happening to a healthy tree, kept indoors over winter.
Then the infestation came. It started with what looked like cotton wool on the branches, with sap all over the leaves. Eventually, this turned into scale. I tried to get rid of the small insects, using organic spray, but this didn't seem to help. I read somewhere that alcohol kills them, so I sprayed them with some cheap aftershave. This did kill them all off, but the very last couple of leaves eventually fell off a few days ago.
The tree is now completely leafless and some of the branches have started to turn brown. The scale has gone, but the brown is spreading to most branches. I have tried to cut back some of the dead wood
The tree is in full sun indoors, but I am worried that the brown will spread to all of the branches and the tree will eventually die off.
Please someone help. The tree has turned from a healthy specimen to a bald twig in the space of 3 months. Can the tree be saved?
--
dmdrabble


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dmdrabble wrote:

Lack of light, humidity too low, overwatering, underwatering, inadequate drainage, excess fertiliser....... some combination of the above. Citrus trees are not indoor plants it takes some juggling to keep them going in tubs under those conditions, it isn't always practical to do it. What is the temperature range where it is?

If this happens again act more swiftly to remove the infestation.
I tried to get rid of the small insects, using

Insects often attack weakened plants. Use pest oil with the insecticide for scale.

It is very vulnerable now, fungus or bacterial diseases could take over that you can't beat.

How many hours of sunlight does it get per day in mid summer and in mid winter?

Maybe. Keep it in the sun, make sure the soil drains well, water sparingly and do not feed until there are signs of growth. When the weather warms up if it is still alive new shoots will appear, then feed in moderation and increase the water. Cut of any dead bits. It may re-shoot from below the graft, if so cut that shoot off you don't want it. Feed again in mid summer. Hope.
David
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"a healthy tree, kept indoors over winter"
--

Is it still indoors?

> dmdrabble wrote:
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The tree is still indoors, but I intend to move it to my polytunnel in the next 2 weeks, as soon as the danger of frost has past. I thought that in its week state, if the temperature dropped too low, it would kill it off.
Indoors it gets quite a lot of sun from mid day onwards and the temperature in my flat is around 17 degrees C.
I will keep my fingers crossed.
--
dmdrabble


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I'd try to return the lemon tree to its natural conditions as much as possible, e.g. warm days, cool nights, and as much sun as possible. I've had a denuded orange (with its extremities dying off) bounce back (snails). I'd move your tree to the poly tunnel with a light bulb, perhaps, to keep the night time temp above freezing. In Florida, they use sprinklers to coat trees with ice on freezing nights, so if you can keep the temp above 0C at night, you should be OK. Sunlight and temp are what I worry about. Citrus wants at least 5 - 6 hr. of intense sunlight. I don't grow plants inside, except for over wintering. The humidity aspect came as a bit of a surprise. The average home has 15 - 20 % humidity, so you will need to make adjustments to meet the 30-60 % humidity requirement. This may be easy to do. Either put your plants in a very bright, well-lit bathroom where there already is more humidity, or raise the humidity in another part of the house by grouping plants together, using a humidifier or cool-mist vaporizer, or putting out a few bowls of water that will evaporate and help raise the average humidity around the plants. I presume that this problem would disappear, if the lemon tree was outside.
Good luck, and don't forget to sterilize your clippers after pruning the tree.
--
- Billy

Bush's 3rd term: Obama plus another elective war
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