A friend of mine gave me a couple of Kaffir Limes in order for me to attempt
to grow a tree from seed. I did an internet search on Kaffir Lime Seed
Propogation and I didn't learn a heck of a lot of information. I'm in Zone
10 (I believe) in the Tampa Bay area so they should do okay, that way. But
what is the best way to start these? Do I soak the seeds? If so, for how
Anyone have experience with these?
On a whim, I split open a Kaffir Lime and scatterd the seed in potting sol
several years ago. Many seeds germinated and I had about 10 plants. Most of
which are still going, potted and moving in and out of doors in Northern WI and
Nartker @ AOL.com
(1) split the limes from pole to pole to extract the seeds. This
results in fewer seeds cut in half. You will likely get 25+ seeds.
They are seedy little devils
(2) plant as soon as you can. Fresh seed is far more likely to
germinate than old seed.
(3) just about any potting soil, 1/4-1/2 in deep, kept moist and warm
will, in my experience give upwards of 75% germination.
(4) You can probably grow them just fine in the ground where you are.
They have survived 25deg F. with only 5in or so of tip burn here.
(5) My oldest seed-grown plant is about 8 years old. It has never
bloomed. It is in a container, though. Not a great loss as the
leaves are the primary part used in cooking. (Yes the zest is nice,
You'll have to wait about 15 years for fruit. You might try here call
first to see if it's in stock.
They are in St. Pete so they are near to you.
Jene's Tropicals if the links don't work
Is friend a poster in alt.binaries.food? :-) He sent me a couple,
too. It was mighty hard to get them started in my frigid house last
winter, but once I got them warm (baggie with planter mix on a m'wave
plate on top of the cable box), many sprouted. They came along nicely
after it got warm outside, but apparently drowned in hurricane
downpour in late summer. I'm afraid to tell him about this. Yes, just
shuck them out and plant. No soaking required. Good luck.
Bought a kaffir lime in a market in London in 1979, and planted the
seeds. One came up. It's a very small tree, but still going strong,
the leaves are useful for cooking oriental food. However, it's never
flowered. It's in a small pot and lives indoors in the winter.
Slightly off-topic, brought home seeds of something called a "mandarin
lemon" from slices of fruit that came in a cocktail in Costa Rica.
Planted them and one came up, and was flowering within five years. The
fruits set, but are very small.
I treat it as a normal indoor plant. It lives on a south-facing
window-sill, with sun from time to time when it occurs (not a lot of
that here in U.K. in winter). I feed it every two weeks with a water
containing Citrus Winter Feed. (No, I'm fibbing - I look at it once
every couple of weeks and if it looks like it's wilting, I give it some
Seriously, I do treat my citruses rough. I feed them every month or so
with Citrus Winter Feed, but aside from that, I only give them a bit of
water through the winter. Our house is quite cold, about 65F, normally.
In the spring I repot them into bigger pots if they require it, with new
soil, and accustom them to going outside in the garden.
My three other citrus trees were planted from supermarket fruit seeds in
1973, when we were indigent and living in a crappy one-room bedsit - a
grapefruit and two orange trees (I think). They're still with us, they
live in our living-room through the winter with very little natural
light and go outdoors in the garden in the summer. They're all very
healthy and the oldest tree is about 3 feet tall.
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