Will Grafting Help Dwarf a Fruit Tree

by Ms R
(Sudan)

Hi . I'm trying to grow a fruit tree in a container and hopefully have fruit as well.

I'm in Sudan and there is no dwarf rootstock here. Infact people look at me funny when I ask.

Is it possible to get your fruit tree to act like a dwarf tree if I graft it by air-layering?

I have mango, a lemon, a guava, an orange, a pomegranate and a grape vine. None of them are dwarf. I need them to fruit what do I do?

I have six kids and the fruit would be a blessing.

Plant Guides Answer

If there is no dwarfing rootstock available where you live then grafting is not an option.

You did not mention how large your plants are or how they were grown. Seedlings, cuttings and grafted trees all grow to different sizes and fruit after different lengths of time.

Since you are asking about grafting, I will assume that none of your trees are grafted.

The pomegranate, guava and mango can all be successfully coaxed into fruiting in containers.

The grape vine will need to be properly pruned in order to fruit and you will need to place a trellis in the pot or train it up into a tree.

The citrus trees may never fruit if they are seedlings. Orange and lemon trees grown from seed need to grow quite large before they will fruit. Much larger than they can grow in a pot.

There is an exception to this. The Meyer lemon tree is a natural dwarf and will be small even when grown from seed.

The other problem with citrus seedlings is the length of time they take to fruit. Some can take as long as a decade.

Your children will have all grown up before your first crop arrives!

I hope that your trees were grown from cuttings. If so, they will fruit much more quickly and at a much smaller size.

If the cuttings which your trees grew from were taken from a tree that blooms and fruits regularly, then your trees should begin to bloom and fruit within 2 or 3 years if they are given good care.

Please feel free to ask any other questions you may have as you carry out this interesting project of planting an orchard in pots.

May you be blessed with a bountiful harvest.

Pruning Citrus Trees

Fruit Tree Pruning Instructions

Dwarf Citrus Trees

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Nov 03, 2010
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pomagranate
by: ms. r

Should I leave the pomagranate as a bush or prune it into a tree shape. I really want it for the fruit. So which will give me more fruit. Also, should i remove the suckers. Not that i've seen any, but i've read that it will produce many suckers and i should remove them. if i left them, woun't i get more fruit? This pomagranate was grown from seed about a year ago. It's now about knee high from the ground and it has five branches all growing from the main branch. it's still bush shape. I've piched off the top to promote branching. it's in a large pot, so that i don't have to pot up. As I said, there are no suckers yet or are thoese extra branches the suckers? I thought suckers had to be below ground like a cycas. Thank you so much.

Oct 31, 2010
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Training a Grape Vine Up a Tree
by: Plant Guide

The tree you train the grape vine up should be mature. Also, I don't know if I would train it up a fruit tree as the vine may shade the canopy of the fruit tree and prevent it from getting enough light to bear a good crop.

You can leave the grape in a pot and train it up a tree to keep it from getting too big. You will have to pull the vines out of the tree each year and prune it back.

As for the Meyer lemon seeds. You would need to find some of the fruit for sale in a local market. Meyers are known as "sweet" lemons.

They are not actually sweet but they are not as tart as regular lemons. The fruit is a bit larger and juicer than that of most true lemons.

Oct 31, 2010
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Thank you
by: Anonymous

Thank you very much for your advice. I didn't mention where the plants came from. The plants are all from seed except the grapes are cuttings. They are also all two years old except for the pomegranates which are one year old. I Really liked the idea of training grapes up a tree. I have a two year old mango seedling planted in the ground.

So my next project is to move the grape out of the pot and train it up the mango tree. I am very scared, but I hope it works.

The mango in the pot is a different variety than the one in the ground and I'm happy you said it could fruit in a pot if I take care of it. Where can I get Meyer lemon seeds . Thank you for your advice. Ms r



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